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Reports about tubeless and airless tires have been around for quite a while now and it might become a full consumer product as soon as 2024 according to a new report.

GM and Michelin both of which are big players in the automotive industry are now working together to create the world’s first consumer airless tires as soon as 2024.

The good advantage of an airless tire includes durability and of course its resistance to puncture. Airless tires can also do more considering their structures, unlike their aired counterparts which often find climbing rigid surfaces a big challenge.

Michelin Uptis tire
These airless tires rely on flexible plastic vanes to achieve their compliance with varying road surfaces and driving dynamics. Michelin

Objects such as nails and sidewall cuts will become less of a challenge and tire inflation won’t be a challenge that you constantly have to face every now and then.

There are a lot of things that having an airless tire can end. One thing though is the durability of the tires and how long it can hold up before it falls apart and unusable.

But by the look of things, Michelin and GM have experienced engineers who would have considered those questions as well and are willing to create an absolutely powerful tire that can function for as long as possible.

Uptis tire and nails
Big deal. Nails in an airless tire are virtually meaningless. Michelin

Uptis tires also have a green angle: The promise to scrap 200 million fewer tires worldwide each year by eliminating sidewall cuts and accelerated wear due to improper inflation. This environmental benefit will accrue regardless of which companies crack the code for airless tires.

Aspects I’ll watch on the road to the airless tire include:

  • What will these weigh? The increasingly electric car world is lardy enough already.
  • How do they drive? Driving purists will rend their vestments as they did over automatic transmissions and electric power steering, but the rest of us are open to better ride quality. 
  • Are they quietTire contact is the main cause of noise that emanates from freeways and inspires all those ugly sound walls.
  • Will these be fully compatible with today’s wheels or best suited to new ones designed for Uptis ? 
  • Can existing auto safety systems like ABS and stability control work properly with Uptis tires? 
  • How well will they shed snow, especially if it packs into the vanes and becomes ice?
  • What will they cost?

Modern-day tires are as old as cars themselves and its safe to assume this to being an overdue leap to the future.