Like owning a vehicle with uncomfortable ergonomics, having noisy tires is an experience most drivers want to endure only once.
Maybe the previous owner of your vehicle was long overdue for an alignment, or proper tire rotation protocols were not followed (both errors can dramatically increase tire noise). Whatever the cause, you’re determined not to repeat history.
Good news! Modern noise-reducing tire technologies can introduce peace and quiet back into your daily drive.
Most road-oriented tires score very well in terms of comfort and road noise. However, certain tires are imbued with technology that really drops the decibels. Here’s a look at some of the latest noise-reducing technologies from leading tire manufacturers.
- Pirelli Noise Cancelling System (PNCS)
Straight from the birthplace of opera comes Pirelli’s Noise Cancelling System (PNCS). PNCS is aimed at reducing cavity noise, the “vibrations that are generated in the tire structure and inside the car.”
PNCS features a sound absorbing sponge material inside of the tire structure.
Pirelli claims that PNCS can reduce tire road noise by 2 to 3 decibels. While that might not sound like much, in the world of enigmatic decibel science, that 2 to 3 decibels means overall tire road noise is just about cut in half.
- Michelin Acoustic Technology
Michelin has employed a technology similar to Pirelli’s, called “Michelin Acoustic Technology.” (When Michelin and Pirelli develop a similar solution, that’s a strong indication of merit, by the way.)
Michelin’s “polyurethane foam solution muffles noise resonance,” making in-car conversation, Bluetooth phone calls, and extended drives more enjoyable and less taxing.
Michelin claims their Acoustic Technology has the added benefit of soaking up noises associated with changing road conditions. In other words, when your quiet highway cruise is disrupted by a road surface apparently engineered for dissonance, Michelin’s Acoustic Technology will work to absorb some of the commotion.
- Hankook Tread Technologies
PNCS and Michelin Acoustic Technology attack the road noise problem within the internal structure of the tire. Precisely engineered tread surface design can also go a long way toward dramatically reducing tire noise.
Hankook is well-known for producing particularly quiet and comfortable tires. Their proficiency in this area is a result of tire tread characteristics that curb sound output right at the source.
The latest tread design technologies include an “Optimized Pitch Sequence” and “Optimized Sipe Design.” (Now available on grand touring and standard touring tires like the Hankook Kinergy ST H735.)
Noise-reducing tire tread technologies are currently more accessible to buyers than the internal foam solution. Early customer feedback on the Kinergy ST H735 has worked to validate Hankook’s tire tread design approach:
We know just how important tire comfort attributes can be over the long-term – find a “Quietness” rating assigned to any tire on TireBuyer.com with sufficient customer feedback:
Between seeking out a tire that’s specifically engineered to reduce road noise, and verifying the success of the technology with real customer feedback, you can all but be assured of peace and quiet on your daily drive.