A good ride always needs to be supported with good tires, with cars going hi-tech; Michelin Tires are exploring the possibilities of a 3D-printed tire for Autonomous cars. That’s right, dubbed as “Vision” these spidery, psychedelic-looking sponges are printed from bio-sourced and biodegradable materials, including natural rubber, bamboo, paper, tin cans, wood, electronic and plastic waste, hay, tire chips, used metals, cloth, cardboard, molasses, and orange zest.
That’s not all, these tires would come with the latest RFID Sensors embedded in to collect data and predict performance and function of the vehicle. The tires would also be adaptive to various terrains- like dirt, snowy, rock etc. Michelin is currently working with a number of external partners and predicts being able to enter into production by 2023.
If cars become fully autonomous, then the traditional design language that has held up for decades goes out the window. Engineers and automakers are already beginning to rethink the vehicle’s interior, removing steering wheels, adding bookshelves, and positioning car seats to face one another. Rather than be left behind, Michelin is contributing to this effort through its reinvention of its tires, both in form and function.