The reduction of polluting emissions is not an exclusive concern of vehicle manufacturers, it is very important that all the parties involved in the creation of a car and its components work together.
And tires are the most important components of a car, the ones that keep you in contact on the asphalt, so finding more environmentally friendly materials involves a lot of research work.
Continental has presented the first tires made with Dandelion, or rather, with Taraxagum, within its objective of improving the sustainability of the tire throughout its life cycle. All manufacturers, including cars like Ford, are working with new compounds and the Dandelion is one of the few that is posited as a real substitute for natural rubber.
Rubber extraction is tremendously expensive because the rubber tree only grows in subtropical areas. Manufacturers need to find alternatives as soon as possible. The Dandelion can grow in very varied climates and the potential cultivation areas cover a wide area distributed throughout the world. This would make it possible to expand the number of plantations and bring them closer to the tire factories, which would reduce logistics costs.
Continental is working with the Russian Dandelion plant to replace natural rubber as a component in its tires. Although it is important that they show us the first tires made with Dandelion, the really groundbreaking thing will be the confirmation of the arrival of the first Dandelion crops. This will significantly reduce the cost of manufacturing a tire and therefore emissions in production will also be lower.
How will it affect the price of a tire?
The next step will be to reduce the emissions produced by the use of the tire and therefore manufacturers are working very actively to reduce rolling resistance. This is important for emissions but also because the car's consumption could be reduced very slightly.
The first tires made with Taraxagum, rubber produced by the Dandelion, have already been presented although they are still in the prototype phase but those responsible announced that the first could reach the market in a period of between 5 to 10 years.