Cooper Tires uses Australia’s harsh terrain as a testing ground for its current range of tyres and new prototypes. Tyres are rigorously tested to research and analyse specific attributes such as grip, strength and mileage. The test results and feedback from Australia’s Cooper tyre specialists are then sent back to Cooper in America for further analysis and design improvements are made to ensure the tyres can withstand the most extreme conditions you can find in Australia.
When Cooper Tires began the development of a replacement for the popular all-terrain tyre, the Cooper A/T, we wanted to make sure the new ATR model would perform better than its forerunner. A Nissan Navara was fitted with a prototype set of ATR tyres and sent across Australia from Byron Bay to Cape Cuvier, and then back again via the Gunbarrel Highway, the Pilbara Region and the Simpson Desert. Testing showed that the new ATR performed faultlessly in all conditions, giving more grip off-road and 26.7% more mileage than the Cooper A/T.
With the release of the new A/T3, further testing was conducted to improve on the ATR. The range of the test categories were Flint Cut and Chip, Wet Handling, Wet Braking, Dry Handling as well as Dry Braking. The results are in and the A/T3 has excelled in each area not only against the ATR but also against competitor brands.
Marty Degyansky, Cooper Tires’ International Technical Manager, came from America to experience Australia’s harsh outback terrain first-hand. After his return, the S/T-C anti-cut and anti-chip compound tyre was designed. Cooper Tires gave it the proven outback tread design of the Sure Trac (S/T) tyre, but made selective changes to the compound to increase cut, chip and lug tear resistance by up to 90% and added additional under-tread reinforcing to resist stone and rock penetrations.
Cooper Tires’ Light Truck Product Manager, John Pecoraro, joined Australia’s Cooper 4WD tyre specialists on a trip from Adelaide to Uluru via the Flinders Ranges and the Oodnadatta Track to evaluate the outback’s extreme conditions in person. A year later, four identical Toyota Land Cruisers were fitted with Cooper’s S/T-C and two prototype S/T replacement tyres and driven over the same routes to evaluate the performance of each compound and tread pattern.
Cooper Tires’ engineers returned once again with almost finalised designs and three different compounds. This time, even more vigorous testing was completed in the harshest conditions of the Australian outback. Never before has such rigorous prototype-testing for an All-Terrain tyre been completed in Australia.
In addition to these real-world tests, Cooper completed more than 2 million kilometres of test track, road and laboratory testing to ensure the S/TMAXX is Cooper’s best ever heavy duty all-terrain tyre.