Falken has announced that its strongest and quietest ultra high performance tire, the Azenis FK453 is to go on sale in the UK. For the first time, it will offer a Y speed rating (for 186mph or 300km/h) version. A replacement for the Japanese firm’s FK452, revered by many car enthusiasts for its blend of performance and affordability, the Azenis FK453 will be available in a total of 62 sizes, including a 20” version, to fit sports and performance cars such as the VW Golf GTI, BMW 1 Series M Coupe, Porsche 911 and Audi RS5.
To ensure the tire was appropriate for European roads and climate, Falken used its engineering team based in Frankfurt to develop the specification. In addition to testing on European public roads and private proving grounds, engineers also gained feedback from Falken’s racing drivers at the Nürburgring who tested the tires. The resulting “NUR-Spec” design incorporates a more warp resistant casing and additional nylon-reinforced cover ply to increase high-speed stability. This construction is complemented by a rounder tire shoulder, optimizing pressure deployment on the tread area.
In contrast to the previous FK452, dry handling has been improved by 25 percent whilst handling on wet surfaces is enhanced by 30 percent, delivering useful gains in control for lane changes and higher speed cornering. A combination of tread pattern and compound changes has led to eight percent reduction over the FK452 in braking distance on wet surfaces. To break the water film and deflect the water more effectively than conventional tread patterns, Falken has implemented three central tread grooves and staggered sipes integrated into the first tread bar on the tire shoulder. In line with its other new products such as the ZE914, Falken has increased the silica proportion. The strain characteristics of silica offer a larger contact area and better grip for the same tire diameter, resulting in stronger interaction with the road surface.
To achieve the lower noise levels now expected by consumers, even those running low profile tyres, Falken introduced phase-shifted tread bars. The rounder shoulder contributes to the significantly lower rolling and pass-by noise.
The FK453 has already made its motorsport debut; Falken’s UK drift team is using the tire in a bid to retain the championship its driver Matt Carter secured last year.
The new AZENIS FK453 range will comprise 62 different sizes (25 to 50 series) making it applicable for a significant number of cars
225/50ZR17 98Y XL Audi A4, BMW X1, Volvo V70
215/45ZR18 93Y XL Mitsubishi Lancer, Volvo V50
235/45ZR18 98Y XL Alfa 159, Mercedes C 63 AMG,
225/45ZR19 96Y XL Infiniti G Coupé
265/40ZR18 101(Y) XL BMW M3, Porsche Boxster/Cayman
265/35ZR19 98Y XL Audi RS5, BMW 1 series M Coupé, Mercedes SLS AMG, Porsche Cayman
245/30ZR19 89Y XL Audi A3/A4, Alfa 147/GT, BMW 1 and 3 series, VW Golf/Passat
255/30ZR19 91Y XL Audi A3/A4, Alfa 147/GT, BMW 1 and 3 series, VW Golf/Passat
285/30ZR19 98Y XL Mercedes CLS 63 AMG/SL 63 AMG
295/30ZR19 100(Y) XL Aston Martin V12, Audi R8, Porsche 911
305/30ZR19 102(Y) XL Audi R8, Porsche 911
295/25ZR20 95(Y) XL BMW M3, Porsche Cayman