Sports car enthusiasts have never been so spoiled for choice given how the offer in this sector has grown over the past months.Sports tyres, ultra sporty tyres and semi-slick tyres have become sub-segments of the market, which is perfectly illustrated by the tyres recently launched by Goodyear.
If we were to make a comparison with a range from another tyre manufacturer, these tyres respectively correspond to the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S, Sport Cup 2 and the Sport Cup 2 R.
Objective: road and track
The sports car market has changed considerably. In just a few years, the levels of power have increased and the race for performance now drives all market segments, bringing a new type of constraints for tyres.
First of all, the more general use of turbo engines means that, by the way they deliver power and torque, they are likely to torture tyres. Then, the increased size of vehicles and aesthetic constraints has resulted in car manufacturers choosing larger rim diameters…
Not forgetting the search for ultimate performance. Indeed, several brands (Honda, Porsche, Renault, Lamborghini…) legitimise the performances of their vehicles by communicating their track lap times. An exercise where tyre quality is decisive.
And it is precisely with the aim of adapting to this market change that the Eagle F1 has been developed in these sizes.
Eagle F1 Supersport: mainly for road use
Although the Supersport is mainly intended for road use, it cannot be compared with the Asymmetric 5. It is a step ahead in terms of sportiness, and has the same ability to occasionally venture onto the track. Claims confirmed by it featuring in the UUHP (ultra ultra high performance) category of tyres.
To show us the capabilities of this new tyre, Goodyear invited us to a test drive on the Ascari race track in Andalusia, with as test cars, the very dynamic Alpine A110 (252 hp) and the Ferrari 488 GTB (670 hp).
The driving areas were strategically chosen to highlight the natural qualities of the tyre and its accessibility. Indeed, Goodyear has benefited from its experience in motorsports to propose a tyre offering precision, a fast response and a real sporty feeling. It also inaugurates a new tread compound to provide versatility, and tread blocks designed for sporty handling and maximum wet grip. The shoulders and structure have been redesigned to deliver precision, stability and a high overall performance.
Eagle F1 Supersport R: mixed road / track use
The R is the radical version of the Supersport. This means that it goes a step further in terms of performance, and as a result, it is more suitable for track use, potentially overlooking versatility.
To achieve this performance, its tread pattern has been redesigned to deliver optimum grip and it uses a different compound with resin. The contact area has also been optimised to propose the best possible contact with the surface.
We were given the opportunity to test this tyre on the hilliest and most technical part of the Ascari race track behind the wheel of a Porsche GT3 RS (520 hp). The demonstration is particularly impressive since the tyre seems to be in perfect harmony with this 911. Precision is complete, and lateral grip and traction are pushed to a very high level.
There is no doubt that these few laps of the track made us realise that the Supersport R is going to become a very serious competitor on the semi-slick market and is at the same level as the top tyres in this category.
Eagle F1 Supersport R: mixed road / track use
The RS model defines the most extreme tyre of the series. A radical semi-slick tyre designed for track use, but which is also road legal. Logically, it is mainly used on dry surfaces, since it is radical and not really designed to deliver versatility.
Available in a limited number of sizes, the RS is designed for the most powerful vehicles in today’s automotive market.
Compared with the R, its rubber compound is even more efficient and its tread pattern even closer to that of a slick tyre.
We did not get the opportunity to test this tyre, but the fact that Porsche validates its performances on the 911 GT2 RS and GT3 RS is a serious guarantee of credibility.
For who? For what?
The Goodyear Eagle F1 Supersport is available in 37 sizes for 18- to 21-inch diameters, covering most sizes for current sports cars (Porsche, Mercedes AMG, etc.).
The Supersport R is now available in 10 sizes for 18- to 21-inch rims, and is suitable for vehicles such as the BMW M4 CS or the Seat Leon Cupra R.
The Supersport RS is only available for 20-inch and 21-inch rims.
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