Hankook Winter i*cept RS3: New Edition of the Successful Tyre for Cold Weather

Shorter braking distances on snow-covered roads and improved handling on icy and wet roads: The new Winter i*cept RS3, is the enhanced successor to the multiple award-winning Winter i*cept RS2. By using the latest technologies, all features of the new model surpass its successful predecessor to offer even greater levels of safety in everyday life. The Hankook Winter i*cept RS3 is therefore an excellent choice for all common compact models and compact SUVs.

The Hankook Winter i*cept RS3 is available in the European market in 71 dimensions, from 14 to 17 inches, including four options with emergency run-flat properties (HRS = Hankook Runflat System).

Snow-covered roads can pose a challenge for both drivers and tyres. By using new micro edges, the developers were able to increase the shoulder area of the Winter i*cept RS3, thereby improving both traction and lateral grip when cornering on snow. The new inverted V-tread and new 3D sipes also provide more stable braking performance and shorter braking distances on snowy roads. Thus, compared to the previous tyre, the winter i*cept RS3 offers up to 4% shorter braking distances on snow-covered roads. In addition, minimising block movement with the use of sawtooth 3D sipes has also played an important role in improving grip and braking performance.

For greater safety on icy roads, the developers also improved the tread stiffness of the Winter i*cept RS3. Internal tests show that the tread blocks are 1% stiffer horizontally and 3% stiffer vertically compared to the Winter i*cept RS2. Drivers also benefit from significantly more grip even on ice.

Improved aquaplaning technologies

Moreover, the Winter i*cept RS3 makes use of various technologies to achieve effective tyre drainage, resulting in a high degree of driving stability, even on wet, muddy or slushy roads. As well as the wide V-shaped tread grooves, the individual blocks on the surface are also criss-crossed with small grooves. This allows water to quickly drain away and noticeably reduces the risk of aquaplaning. The new, overlaid W tread pattern also helps with this, as well as offering better steering control in the rain.

With the new generation of the “Aqua Pine Compound,” developers were able to reduce braking distances on wet roads. Traditionally, the use of all-silica compounds comes at the expense of tyre mileage. However, the new material mix, which is based on natural resins, overcomes this trade-off, achieving a reduction in abrasion and an increase in braking efficiency. The Winter i*cept RS3 therefore enables up to 7% shorter braking distances on wet roads, while offering up to 10% more mileage than its proven predecessor. The new material mix also provides an improved connection between the tyre and the road, thereby reducing slippage and increasing mileage.

Multiple awards for predecessors

The new Winter i*cept RS3 was developed as an improved version of the previous Winter i*cept RS2, which received a “highly recommended” rating in the Auto Zeitung 2020 winter tyre test. In the same year, the Winter i*cept RS2 also received the highest rating from Auto Express and ADAC for its excellent handling characteristics, strong traction and very good properties on both dry and wet roads.

“Offering tyre products that ensure driver safety on the road is our top priority. This is why we are continuously investing in research and development so that we can always offer the latest technologies on the market,” said Sanghoon Lee, President of Hankook Tire Europe. “That is why we are confident that the new winter i*cept RS3, will also meet the high expectations of our customers.”

So that it is able to offer top quality winter tyres, Hankook Tire operates its Technotrac test facility in Ivalo, Finland. At the site, the company has the ideal conditions for extensively testing the results of its research and development work under various winter conditions – a perfect basis for developing and manufacturing tyres that work perfectly on ice and snow.