Continental Tyres launched its new Generation 6 tyres, the UltraContact UC6 and ComfortContact CC6, in China yesterday. These new tyres expand the company’s range of rubber doughnuts designed specifically for Asia Pacific markets, and join the SportContact 6 as Continental’s latest-generation tyres.

The UltraContact UC6 opens up a new product line between the entry-level ComfortContact and mid-range MaxContact tyres, offering balanced handling and braking performance and improved safety.

Wet-weather performance is improved through the use of Aqua Channel surface sipes and Aqua Drainage tubes positioned in the centre of the tyre tread – where the risk of aquaplaning is higher. These accelerate the evacuation of water into the main grooves, much like a rain pipe in a roof gutter.

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Continental UltraContact UC6

There’s also a chamfered Diamond Edge in the tread pattern which reduces the “rolling-in” effect of the pattern blocks under braking, distributing pressure equally and maximising the contact area – the result is reduced stopping distances both in the dry and the wet.

The compound itself has also been improved, with a self-adapting material containing two types of specially-developed polymers. The shorter grip polymers have more chain ends, which absorb more energy – that energy is transformed into heat, resulting in higher grip and shorter braking distances. Meanwhile, the longer mileage polymers are entangled and strongly connected to each other, ensuring higher mileage.

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Continental ComfortContact CC6

At the other end of the spectrum is the ComfortContact CC6, which prioritises comfort and high-mileage. The unique tread pattern is thanks to the Harmonic Comfort Chamber, which reduces the typical rolling tyre sound. Based on the Helmholtz resonator, the chamber uses air going in and out to cancel unpleasant noise frequencies.

Grooves are another source of road noise, and Continental combats this using a 0 dB-Eater, positioned in the grooves to break up noise waves into smaller waves, reducing the overall sound level. The compound also makes a difference with special softeners that allow it to better adapt to the roughness of a road surface, reducing vibration and hence road noise. Strong locking molecular connections – with polymers bonded with a durable sulphur network – resist wear and contribute to a longer tread life.