AD #2609 – GM and Michelin Test Airless Tires, BMW Unveils New M8 Coupe and Convertible, Buick Denied Tariff Exemption

June 5th, 2019 at 11:41am

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Listen to “AD #2609 – GM and Michelin Test Airless Wheels, BMW Unveils New M8 Coupe and Convertible, Buick Denied Tariff Exemption” on Spreaker.

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Runtime: 7:34

0:06 China Cracking Down on American Companies
0:36 GM Denied Tariff Exemption
1:15 Merrill Lynch Says Rare Earth Ban Overblown
1:37 Nissan Concerned Over FCA/Renault Merger
2:43 GM and Michelin Test Airless Tires
3:51 Gordon Murray Creates New Supercar
5:49 BMW Unveils New M8 Coupe and Convertible
6:34 SEAT Launches 1st Electric Car

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37 Comments to “AD #2609 – GM and Michelin Test Airless Tires, BMW Unveils New M8 Coupe and Convertible, Buick Denied Tariff Exemption”

  1. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Won’t those “air free” tires be noisy and ride rough, like run-flat tires, only worse?

  2. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Anyone else think about Jim Hall’s Chaparral race car when viewing today’s segment on Gordon Murray’s new Supercar. It is definitely the same idea (of removing air from under the car for downforce). It may be innovative but not the idea in practice.

  3. MJB Says:

    #1, Yeah, I too would be interested to know how much noise they generate. Though, I suspect that if those ‘spokes’ are more rubberized than plasticized, the tire may actually be quiet.

    I wonder if anyone is working on a bicycle tire version (with rounded, half-height sidewalls). This would kill two birds with one stone, as bike tires still require inner-tubes. How long ago was it that inner-tubes became obsolete in vehicle tires? 40yrs+?

  4. Clem Zahrobsky Says:

    We would have had our own rare earths if Obama had not stopped the mining on govt owned land

  5. Lambo2015 Says:

    1 Id be more concerned with how heavy those tires must be. When manufacturers are going as far as to make carbon fiber wheels to reduce wheel weight, those tires with rubber fins where there once was air has to double the weight. However the advantages might outweigh the downside. (no pun intended)
    The larger advantage to this beyond the no more flats or pressure monitoring would be getting rid of the spare tire. Freeing up that space in a compact car is a huge.

  6. Victor West Says:

    Sure, lets dig up our wilderness lands for minerals. All modern mining is dig a huge hole and pile up the waste. NE Oklahoma has an unlivable lead and zinc area from national defense mining.


    2) I was thinking about that and the 1985 Mosler Consulier GTP. The Mosler was mid-engine, with a rear center fan(dual even), and 2200 pounds. 2200 pounds was pretty impressive back when carbon fiber in cars wasn’t even a thing yet. It was also fairly aerodynamic to boot. Sadly HP was only 190HP then which was later updated to 440 in the Raptor version. The Raptor version though came in at 2700 pounds though.

    So I see the new revolutionary Gordon Murray car more or less as an updated Mosler Consulier GTP with the latest materials/engines/and computer technology.

  8. Carl Says:

    Good to see the USA will receive the higher quality Swedish built XC60′s instead of the ones slapped together in China.

  9. Kit Gerhart Says:

    About 1/3 of cars have already gotten rid of the spare tire, using run-flat tires, or, in some cases, a can of fix-a-flat. With years of development, I suppose the air free tires might become almost competitive overall, as today’s run-flat tires are much better than the early ones.

    If air free tires ever get to where they work as well as regular tires, it would be nice, not needing to air up tires every couple months, but I’m not holding my breath on that happening any time soon.

  10. Kit Gerhart Says:

    3 If memory serves me right, my parents’ 1955 Dodge had tube tires, and the 1957 Chrysler I had a few years later had tubeless. I suspect all of the US car companies started using tubeless tires within a year or two of each other.

  11. Lambo2015 Says:

    10 Most new drivers today think innertubes are some a vinyl tube you float down a river on. :-)

  12. ArtG Says:

    3. Tubeless tires for cars proliferated in the mid-50s. My father’s 1956 Oldsmobile had them. It was a big deal then.

  13. Sean McElroy Says:

    @Lambo – You make a good point about weight. But those airless tires don’t have sidewalls. I wonder if the rubber fins equals the same amount of rubber used for the sidewalls?

  14. cwolf Says:

    Wouldn’t mud and snow build-up effect wheel balance?

  15. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Other concerns with the airless tires could be accumulation of mud, snow, even rocks/pebbles/dirt over time. Also a concern may be with temperature extremes; hot would probably drive different from cold, and extreme cold may be dangerous as summer only tires might be in today’s world. These tires still may be a good idea but probably with limitations of use.

  16. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The no-air tires should be good for military vehicles that are being shot at, but are probably a long ways from “prime time” for passenger vehicles.

  17. XA351GT Says:

    So what engine is that Cosworth based on? They always were based on or paid for by other companies That Brabham fan car was dubbed the Super Sucker So will this be the T50-SS ?

  18. Lambo2015 Says:

    14 Yeah I was guessing the actual production version of those tires would have a thin exterior to prevent anything from entering the ribs. I think its only open for people to see how it works.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    17 If it’s based on their most recent F1 engine, it should really scream. The 2.4 liter V8 F1 engines ran to 18,000 rpm, so with the extra cylinders, it would have the same pitch at only 12,000 rpm.

  20. JWH Says:

    #17 – Cosworth Vega was based on the Chevrolet Vega aluminum block with head designed by Cosworth. Not inexpensive at the time.

    Chaparral 2J in 1969 or so utilized sucker fan for ground effects. I remember seeing these at Chevrolet Engineering at the time.

    #11 – I agree primary use for inner tubes is for floating down rivers – One of them is inflated around the cooler for the beverages.

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    20 A lot of motorcycles still use tubes, especially dirt bikes with wire spoke wheels.

    Cosworth did a lot of work with Ford, both for racing engines, and for “hot” versions of various British Ford road cars.

  22. merv Says:

    @3 bicycle tires have been tubeless for quite a few years,on the higher end bikes. in the early 90′s they tried some solid tires made out of some sort of foam-those never worked out

  23. cwolf Says:

    My “69″ MGC has tubes because of the wire wheels. Thank God they are not hard to find.

    I wonder if Airless tires would have to be load rated? Towing a small trailer with a load may have a negative impact on the rear tires. Someone must have though of the many challenges during development.

  24. Kit Gerhart Says:

    22 Solid tires seem to be severely compromised, even in applications that shouldn’t be very demanding. A guy at my condo recently got a new ~5 mph mobility scooter which came with solid foam tires. He says the ride quality is o awful, compared to the similar machine it replaced, which had regular pneumatic tires. The pneumatic tires were somewhat of a nuisance, needing to be aired up fairly frequently, but they worked much better than the solid ones.

    I suspect part of the problem with the solid mobility scooter tires, is that they are probably made to work with the maximum rated weight for the scooter, which would be ~350 pounds, while my amputee friend weighs only about 160. Apparently the tires are only available one way, rather than in different weight ranges.

  25. cwolf Says:

    My “69″ MGC requires tubes due to the spoke rims. Thank God they are still available.

    Would the airless tire have to be load rated? Hauling a trailer with a load may effect the rear tires. These things must have been in mind during development; don’t you think?

  26. Kit Gerhart Says:

    25 The airless tires would definitely have a maximum rating, but maybe should also have a minimum rating to cover the issues like with the mobility scooter in #24.

  27. DonWagner1239 Says:

    Not in today’s show, but I haven’t seen any news in Autoline Daily or any other Autoline news about the electric car from Mullen USA called the Qiantu K50. Their web site: Saw their ads on the Indianapolis 500 and the Detroit IndyCar races (sponsored the aerial coverage). Lots of info at the web site. Quite entertaining show from the opening link. Won’t go into details. Want to reserve one? Pricing starts at $125k, but that doesn’t really seem too be extreme compared to the BMW M8 coupe. Examples of leases shown.

  28. Don B. Says:

    Buick did pre-order Envisions before the tariff hit. Have they run thru that stock?

  29. Larry D. Says:

    “Reid Bigland, head of U.S. sales for Fiat Chrysler and the Ram brand, claims company executives have retaliated against him for cooperating with a federal investigation into the company’s sales reporting practices, and slashed his pay by more than 90 percent, starting in March.”

    I bet this will be discussed in today’s show

  30. Larry D. Says:

  31. Larry D. Says:

    Today and tomorrow I am working with my 3 colleagues to write the accreditation report. One of them lives in Germany and told us that their Green Party (which, remarkably, is, econs-wise, for free markets and lower taxes!) was the TOP party in their recent Europarliament elections.

    So naturally I asked him, given how green Germany’s current policies are, how greener would the Greens be if they formed a government?

    He did give me some examples, including that they would forbid cars (I assume they will still allow pure EVs) from downtown areas (as they do in many Norwegian cities already), and even commit the sacrilege of imposing a Speed limit even on all autobahns! He also told me voters will vote for them because they believe the other parties will oppose this and it will not happen.

    The Greens would also tax heating fuels far more than currently, and those who vote for them don’t care much, because most of them are ages 16-26 (they vote at 16 there!) and have not yet have to pay fuel bills.

  32. ChuckGrenci Says:

    #31 Agree:
    Some of the “Green’s” work is commendable, but as you allude, and with those younger ages of 16-26 don’t realize, that taxing heating fuels which are some of the most regressive taxes, that they can be devastating to the poor. The less advantaged pay the brunt (percentage of their income) for fuel taxes, and where vehicle fuel can somewhat be easier to reduce, when you are talking about heating there is quite a lot less wiggle room in what is required to provide heat; this can translate to staying alive in some cases).

  33. Lambo2015 Says:

    30 Interesting article. I hope he wins his lawsuit and gets a huge settlement. They should send a message to FCA that retaliating against an employee for having morals and doing the right thing will not be tolerated.

  34. Kit Gerhart Says:

    32 Sometimes I wish electricity weren’t so cheap. If it cost more, maybe restaurants wouldn’t be kept at 65 degrees, when it’s 95 degrees outside.

  35. Kit Gerhart Says:

    About an hour ago I heard on the radio (NPR) that the Renault/FCA deal is off, at least for now. I hope it stays that way.

  36. Larry D. Says:

    34 That’s true for almost every econ variable, if its price goes up, sooner (short term) or definitely later, its consumption goes down.

  37. MJB Says:

    #22. That explains it. If tubeless tires have been standard on high-end bicycles for some time, that why mine still have tubes. I’ve never spent more than $150 on a bicycle.