Bridgestone launches new super-flexible tyre

Tyre specialist Bridgestone has launched a new range of tractor rubber that is designed to work in the field and on the road without having to alter the pressure.

The new VT Tractor range has a more resistant casing than a standard radial tyre, which allows it to be run at lower pressure in the field to reduce soil compaction.

The idea is to inflate the tyre to about 0.8 bar, which is less than the 1 bar you’d usually run a flexible sidewall tyre at. According to the boffs at Bridgestone this can increase lug area by up to 25% to expand the footprint of each shoe and reduce soil compaction.

More lugs pressing against terra firma has obvious traction benefits too, particularly during cultivation work, and could potentially increase work rates and trim fuel consumption for buyers.

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The designers have also fiddled with the lug layout. The longer grips are designed to reduce slip and scuffing during fieldwork and provide a smoother ride on the road. The flexible sidewall should also soak up more shocks from bumps at high speed.

Obviously if you’re doing lots of road work then it pays to pump the tyres up a bit more, or shoe the tractor on something a little cheaper, but for shifting between fields it’s ideal, particularly given the road speeds that modern tractors are capable of.

The new VT tyre range is available in size from 28in to 42in and will be branded with the Bridgestone logo.

It signals a change of tack from the company, which has traditionally sold all of its agricultural tyres under the Firestone banner. However, with its sights set on the premium market, Bridgestone has decided to put its own name on the high flexion tyres. Rubber from either brand will still be manufactured at Bridgestone’s plant in Puente San Miguel, near Bilbao in northern Spain.

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