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Michelin has updated its Energy range of tyres with the XM2+, promising better stopping distances and performance be it new or worn.

17 Jul 2019


When it comes to tyres, there never is a clear-cut way to distinguish a pair that's better than the next.

According to Michelin, the Energy XM2+ lasts up to 25% longer compared to other premium tyre brands
Manufacturers claim improvements in areas of grip, longevity and efficiency with every new tyre that's launched.

And at a consumer level, there is rarely a chance to test a tyre out to prove these improvements are worthy of consideration.

So when launching the XM2+, Michelin put in tests and figures to prove that its tyre isn't just a marketing gimmick - it really is performing as advertised.

The working class hero

Aimed at mass market cars like the Honda City and the Toyota Vios, the Michelin Energy XM2+ is the French rubber maker's latest product in its Energy tyre range.

A new full silica compound is used in the Michelin Energy XM2+, which allows it to perform well be it new or worn
The successor to the Energy XM2, the XM2+ is developed with a focus on performing well be it when new or worn.

For the XM2+, a new full silica rubber compound has been formulated, which claims to improve grip levels throughout the life of the tyre.

With the strengthened bonding, it means that wear is also minimised up to 25%, leading to longer mileage. These improvements also improve its stopping abilities be it new or worn, in the dry or wet.

Hence, it boasts shorter braking distances in the wet, of up to 1.5m against premium competitors. This is a bold claim, so to prove its point, Michelin devised some tests to prove that the XM2+ is indeed what it claims to be.

The rain master

A wet weather braking test was devised for us journalists to test out how well the Energy XM2+ performed against its competitors
A Honda City, fitted with new Michelin XM2+ tyres, had to brake to a complete standstill from 80km/h.

New tyres of two other competitor brands, Competitor A and Competitor B, were also tested to form a comparison.

Braking distances were then measured using Racelogic Performance GPS data boxes, which provide accurate distance and speed information. Mind you, these systems are used in motorsports too - so they are as accurate as it gets.

Braking hard from 80km/h, the differences were clear. Under our hands, we managed to stop at 29.8m. Competitor A stopped at 30.7m, while the worst performing Competitor B stopped at 35.5m.

While the XM2+ clearly won the first test, the differences against competitors can be considered marginal. As expected for new tyres, they will perform well. But what happens when they're worn down? After all, it isn't every day that we will run new tyres on our cars.

Data from the Racelogic GPS box showed the worn Michelin Energy XM2+ stopped just 0.4m longer compared to new ones, at 30.2m
Performance good both new and worn

The next test was with worn tyres, right till the thread wear indicator.

This would be the ultimate test, as not many would expect worn tyres to perform comparably. Surprisingly, the completely worn XM2+ didn't falter.

The Honda City ground to a halt at 30.2m - just 0.4m away from the newer tyres.

The other competitors didn't fare so well. Competitor A managed to stop at 32.4m, not too shabby for a completely worn tyre. Competitor B on the other hand didn't even manage to stop in the wet segment, coming to a full stop only on the dry segment at 40.1m - a rather scary experience.

Your stopping superpower

Despite being completely worn, the Energy XM2+ performed well through the gymkhana course
Rounding off the exercise was a short gymkhana course, where the worn Energy XM2+ were pitted against worn Competitor B tyres - the worst performer during the braking exercise.

The Michelin Energy XM2+ again emerged on top, completing the course a full three seconds ahead of its competitor at 28.01 seconds.

With these tests, Michelin's bold claims on the stopping abilities of the XM2+ in the wet have held true.

It too is no surprise then that the XM2+s marketing tagline is 'Your Stopping Superpower', as it indeed performs well when new and worn.

In Singapore, the Michelin Energy XM2+ is available in sizes ranging from 14 to 16 inches, with up to 40 different sizes, with more available in the future.

To find out more about the Energy XM2+, head to Michelin Singapore's official website here.
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