SEMA, DAY ONE: The future is now for Yokohama

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Yokohama Tire Corp. introduced what it calls "the future of the all-season tire" at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas.

The new Avid TRZ (for "Three Ride Zones") is designed for "uncompromised" performance on snow-covered, wet and dry road surfaces, according to the company.

1. The tire´s "inner zone" provides winter traction. Yokohama developed and tested this zone in the snow and ice of North America, Japan and New Zealand. It features a new silica compound, cross grooves and "Adaptive Sipes" that change shape as the tread wears.

2. A "middle zone" provides water evacuation. Sipes and grooves on the tread face sweep water into four deep circumferential grooves that expel water quickly, says the company.

3. The "outer zone" is engineered for dry grip and cornering. Yokohama says two continuous circumferential ribs help ensure the Avid TRZ will stay in constant contact with the road. When cornering, the shoulder and second row blocks "act as one continuous block," which helps give the tire its gripping capability and provides it with extra stability.

The tire has an asymmetrical tread pattern and is backed by an 80,000-mile limited tread wear warranty. It will be available in 23 sizes beginning in January 2005.

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