Mary has over 20 years experience as the editor of our Malaysian sister magazine, The Tyreman. Based in Kuala Lumpur, she writes articles for us on the Malaysian and other South East Asian markets.
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“These two highly praised tyre models deploy Advance 4D-Nano Design, the propriety simulation technology of Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd (SRI), which supports the development of new materials for high quality. Low rolling resistance, outstanding safety and durability are the three main requirements that car tyres need to fulfil. To provide progress in this area, the scientists and engineers at SRI, the producer of Falken tyres, conducted pioneering research into the molecular structure of tyres and the Advance 4D-Nano Design is the result of these advanced findings,” said Tyre Specialist ZE310R Moo Chee Fong.
Both tyres, Moo continued, 4D Nano design technology that enables Sumitomo Rubber’s engineers to develop a softer rubber compound for the ZE310R suitable for both Malaysian weather and its road conditions. The new multi-functionality SBR (Styrene Butadiene Rubber) has an increased layer of silica distribution as well as bonding points between the silica and the polymer. There is also a restraint on unnecessary heat generation of the tyre, which provides a strong grip on wet and dry roads, better traction and mileage, as well as other benefits.
This technology, he continued, utilised world-class, cutting-edge research facilities such as the SPring-8 Large Scale Synchrotron Radiation Facility, J-Parc Proton Accelerator and Experimental Facility and K-Computer supercomputer. By co-ordinating them, it was possible to analyse and simulate the internal structure and behaviour of rubber materials precisely and continuously from the nanometre scale to micron scale. The aim is to achieve balanced high performance in terms of the three inherently contradictory key tyre performance traits – fuel efficiency, grip and wear resistance.
“Comparing these two tyres respectively with their rivals from the major brands that were designed using the traditional technology, our products are ahead of them on performance parameters, especially in grip and comfort,” he added.
Head of High-Performance Tyre Ku Seng Yeow said the FK510, which was launched in 2018,
is Falken’s flagship Ultra-high performance (UHP) tyre catering for the premium market segment. It was still one of the most sought after ultra-high-performance (UHP) tyres among the drivers of premium vehicles until today.
“This reflects that SRI is designing products that stand the test of time. Previously, the Falken brand focused on penetrating the market through its economy value. With the successful deployment of Advance 4D-Nano design technology, Falken has become one of the leading brands in product performance in recent years.”
Equipped with Adaptive Constant Pressure (ACP) technology, the FK510 provided consistent pressure distribution across the contact patch. As a result, he said, directional stability, driving dynamics and braking performance were improved. The FK510 was hailed as a ‘wet weather hero’ that was suited to Malaysia’s tropical weather with heavy rainfall, given its shoulder blocks for high-speed cornering and lateral grip, four circumferential grooves for efficient water dispersal and enhanced hydroplaning resistance. The wet grip performance was further enhanced with variable sipe depth across the tread surface for controlled flexibility while maintaining overall block rigidity.
Also improved was driving comfort. Ku pointed out that when driven over rumble strips, the car’s ride was less bumpy.
Available in 105 sizes, covering 17 to 22-inch wheels, the FK510 was fully imported from Japan. It was designed for drivers of performance and premium European and Japanese car brands looking for excellent grip and outstanding performance. To meet the growth of the SUV (sport utility vehicle) market, Ku said SRI expanded its Falken UHP range by making FK510 available as an SUV tyre.
It is worth mentioning that the FK510 impressed the media teams from two major German magazines - Auto Bild and Autozeitung - in 2018. It won a top three place in the large-scale summer test performed by Auto Bild, earning a rating of ‘Exemplary’, while Autozeitung bestowed the tyre a ‘Highly Recommended’ label. Furthermore, the German association of technical inspectors GTÜ (Gesellschaft für Technische Überwachung), a German car inspection body, ranked the Falken FK510 first in its test of 11 different tyre models.
In the 2020 edition of Auto Bild’s annual Summer Tyre Test, the Falken Azenis FK510 in its 245/45R18 guise was placed seventh overall and named one of five 'Exemplary' tyres. The German title noted the FK510's well-balanced performance in wet and dry conditions, consistent handling response, short braking distance on wet pavement as well as low noise emission levels. Again, in the more recent 4/2022 issue, the Azenis FK510 was awarded an ‘exemplary’ rating by German sportscar magazine Auto Bild in its summer tyre test, after placing third in the overall rankings. The FK510s were found to have performed particularly well in the most important area for high-performance tyres – safety - finishing high up the order in both wet and dry braking tests.
“Convincing driving characteristics on wet and dry road surfaces, dynamic handling, precise turning performance, short braking distances are the strengths that the testers at Autobild Allrad attributed to the FK510 SUV in its 2022 summer tyre test. Overall, the FK510 SUV came in at third place in the rankings with a rating of ‘Good’.”
As for the ZE310R, which was called a ‘baby’ version of FK510, Moo said it was targeted at the middle and upper middle market segment. The creation of the ZE310R, he pointed out, was to satisfy the increasing need of performance-oriented and price-sensitive consumers due to the impact of Covid-19.
The ZE310R, Moo continued, featured an asymmetric pattern with optimised block rigidity distribution. Excellent levels of directional handling stability, enhanced all-round grip and the added benefit of even wear were achieved with the Adaptive Constant Pressure (ACP) technology, an ‘intelligently designed tread pattern’ that adapted to all situations to maximise surface area.
“Consumers would benefit from its excellent traction and grip on wet and dry roads, enhanced resistance against aquaplaning, shorter braking distances, improved quietness and ride comfort, good handling and longer wear life, “Moo said.
The ZE310R tyres European version- the ZE310 has won numerous high ratings from third party independent tests.
“In 2018, it ranked 3rd in the Auto Bild 15-inch Summer Tyre Test and was praised for its excellent aquaplaning safety, good steering precision and stable handling in dry, short braking distances on wet and dry surfaces as well as its low wear and relatively low rolling resistance. Then, in a summer 2020 Tyre Reviews Ultimate Summer Tyre Test, it came 3rd in the 205/55R16 category, demonstrating the shortest wet braking distance among rivals, with good aquaplaning, low noise level and competitive pricing also noted by the panel. All these positive comments enabled the tyre to win the title of ‘Highly Recommended’ 16-inch summer tyre.”
The ZE310R sizes are smaller compared to the FK510. It starts at 15 to 18 inches, with H, V and W speed ratings, in the 35 to 65 profile range. Moo said it would complement the company’s high-performance offerings to cater to the middle and upper-middle market segment.
According to Ku, despite the multiple lockdowns during the pandemic, the company not only met but exceeded its sales target for both tyres. This indicated that the company’s social media marketing strategy was effective. “We worked closely with our dealers and helped them post their activities and events on our Facebook page, for example, by featuring their tyre fitment pictures to attract customers. Additionally, we also reached out through product related video clips, live streaming and tyre reviews.”
To gather first-hand information on the products and continue to improve them, Moo added that the company also worked with various car clubs. Working with these clubs provided the company a direct access to car enthusiasts who were its potential customers in obtaining helpful insights and constructive suggestions on tyres as well as introducing its products to the car club members.
“We are glad that we have already invested in digital platforms and executed our digital strategy prior to the pandemic and are now in a position to leapfrog our less nimble competitors,” concluded Ku.
自飞劲轮胎独家经销商--添福胶胎（马）私人有限公司将Azenis FK510 和 Ziex ZE310R Ecorun 轮胎引进大马后，这两款轮胎就此风靡市场。
ZE310R轮胎专家巫志方表示：“这两款备受赞誉的轮胎采用了住友橡胶工业有限公司 (SRI) 支持开发高质量新材料的专有模拟技术 ---先进4D-纳米设计（Advance 4D-Nano Design）。汽车轮胎的三大要求是低滚动阻力、出色的安全性和耐用性。为了在这方面取得进展，飞劲轮胎生产商 SRI 的科学家和工程师对轮胎的分子结构进行了开创性研究，而先进4D-纳米设计技术就是他们努力的成果。”
这项技术采用世界一流的尖端研究设施，他继续说，例如 SPring-8 大型同步加速器辐射设施、J-Parc 质子加速器和实验设施以及 K-Computer 超级电脑。通过协调它们，可以从纳米级到微米级精确、连续地分析和模拟橡胶材料的内部结构和行为。目的是在三个固有矛盾的关键轮胎性能特征方面，实现平衡的高性能——燃油效率、抓地力和耐磨性。
高性能轮胎负责人邱成耀表示，2018 年推出的 FK510是飞劲专为高端市场设计的超高性能(UHP)旗舰轮胎。直到今天，该轮胎在高档汽车驾驶人中仍然是最受追捧的超高性能轮胎之一。
FK510 采用自适应恒压 (ACP) 技术，可在其接地面上提供一致的压力分布。他说，如此一来就能提升轮胎的方向稳定性、驾驶动态及制动性能。被誉为“雨天英雄”的 FK510，相当适合马来西亚热带又多雨的天气，其胎肩块状花纹可提供卓越的高速过弯和横向抓地力，四个圆周胎沟可有效分散水分并增强轮胎的抗打滑能力。通过其胎面的可变刀槽花纹深度，进一步提高轮胎的湿地抓地力和灵活的操控，并保持块状花纹的整体刚度。
完全从日本进口的FK510推出105 种尺寸，涵盖 17 至 22 寸轮毂。它是专为追求卓越抓地力和性能的高性能欧洲和日本汽车品牌的驾驶员而设计。为了满足休旅车（SUV）市场的增长，邱成耀表示，SRI扩大其飞劲超高性能（ UHP）系列，并推出了FK510休旅车轮胎。
值得一提的是，2018年，德国两大杂志Auto Bild和Autozeitung的媒体团队都对FK510留下了深刻印象。该款轮胎在Auto Bild举办的大规模夏季测试中荣获前三名佳绩及“模范”评级，并在Autozeitung的评测中取得“强烈推荐”的评级。此外，德国汽车检查局（Gesellschaft für Technische Überwachung）在其测试的11种不同轮胎中，将飞劲FK510列在第一位。
在2020年的Auto Bild年度夏季轮胎测试中，尺寸为245/45R18的飞劲 Azenis FK510 的总成绩排名第七，并被评为五个“模范”轮胎之一。该德国杂志还注意到了 FK510 在干湿路况下的均衡性能、一致的操控反应、湿地的短制动距离以及低噪音排放水平。在最近的2022年第4 期夏季轮胎测试中，Azenis FK510获得了德国跑车杂志 Auto Bild 的“模范”评级，在总排名中名列第三。 此外，FK510也被发现在高性能轮胎最重要的领域——安全性方面表现特别出色，并在干湿地制动测试中名列前茅。
“令人信服的湿地和干地驾驶特性、动态操控、精确的转向性能、短的制动距离是 Autobild Allrad 2022 年夏季轮胎测试人员对FK510 SUV 的评语。FK510 SUV 以整体‘良好’评分位列第三。”
至于被称为 FK510“婴儿”版的ZE310R，巫志方表示该款轮胎的目标是中端和中高端市场。他指出，在冠病的影响下，追求性价比的消费者人数日益增长，ZE310R 的创建就是为了满足这个族群的需求。
“2018年，它在Auto Bild 15寸夏季轮胎测试中排名第三。评审团对其出色的抗打滑、准确的转向和在干湿路面上的稳定操控、短制动距离及低磨损能力赞不绝口。接着，在 2020 年夏季轮胎评测终极夏季轮胎测试中，它在 205/55R16 尺寸的类别中排名第三，以最短的湿地制动距离在竞争对手中脱颖而出，评审团也注意到了该轮胎良好的抗打滑能力、低噪音和具有竞争力的价格。这些正面评价使该轮胎赢得了‘强烈推荐’的16 寸夏季轮胎评级。”
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