Aston Martin's Rapide E to Use Noise-Cancelling Tires From Pirelli
Pirelli is using special technology to make Aston's first EV much quieter than gasoline-powered cars of the past.
This month, Aston Martin made its plans public to sell an extremely limited-production Rapide E electric sedan. Tire manufacturer Pirelli followed up that announcement with the new P Zero line tires that it is developing specifically for the new Aston. The chief features of these special P Zeros will be a low rolling resistance to maximize the car's battery range, and a noise-cancelling system within the tires to keep peace and quiet inside the driver's cabin.
Pirelli states the measurements of the Rapide E's tires will be a 245 millimeter width rubber fitted up front, with 295 millimeter tires out back. This staggered width setup is fairly common for high-powered rear-wheel-drive cars. More interesting is the fact that the front and rear tires are meant to perform their own jobs on the Rapide E. According to Pirelli, the Aston's wider rear tires are made of a compound designed for maximum traction and road-feel, while the front tires will instead prioritize efficiency and grip in the case of wet weather conditions. Aston Martin plans for these four tires to propel the Rapide E to 60 mph in less than four seconds, and carry it more than 200 miles on a battery's charge.
All four of the P Zeros will include Pirelli's noise-cancelling technology, first developed in 2013 for use on Audi's RS6. Pirelli created this system to reduce noise that is transferred from rolling tires to the car's interior. The company says that tires without the tech naturally create vibrations as they compress along terrain. These vibrations then travel into the car through the suspension and steering column.
Pirelli describes the noise-cancelling system as "A device made of polyurethane and fitted to the inside of the tyre allows the Pirelli system to absorb these vibrations and limit their transmission to the inside of the vehicle. The Pirelli Noise Cancelling System can lower noise by 2-3 decibels, thus cutting the overall noise level in half."
While the noise-cancelling tech was first developed for use with internal combustion cars, it may be better suited to electric vehicles, like Aston's Rapide E. The silent nature of electric motors compared to traditional engines means that the loudest part of an EV is usually its tires. The addition of quieter rubber is a logical next step as luxury hybrid and electric cars become more popular.