About cars: GM and Michelin to launch air-free tires by 2024

In the future, getting a flat tire may no longer be a problem.

Airless tires might be coming sooner than we think. Since they seem to be more practical as they eliminate the problem of running flat, GM and Michelin showcased a prototype of Uptis (Unique Puncture-proof Tire System), a Michelin-made tire intended for passenger cars.

The concept is similar to Tweel and other air-free concepts but Uptis comes as a mix of composite rubber and resin embedded fiberglass lets it operate at highway speeds. The previous concepts tend to work only when you’re slowly putting around. It’s not as visually appealing as conventional tires, but Michelin claims it’s just as comfortable.

The Michelin Uptis Prototype is tested on a Chevrolet Bolt EV Wednesday, May 29, 2019, at the General Motors Milford Proving Ground in Milford, Michigan. GM intends to develop this airless wheel assembly with Michelin and aims to introduce it on passenger vehicles as early as 2024. (Photo by Steve Fecht for General Motors)

GM will begin testing the Uptis in Michigan later in 2019. The finished version is expected to be available for production cars as soon as 2024.

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