Tuesday saw us invited by Michelin to test their new Track Connect Cup 2 tyres at the famous Silverstone GP. The innovative Track Connect system provides live data about the pressure and temperature of each tyre whilst providing recommending pressures and adjustment information.
These special Cup2 tyres use in-built sensors to constantly relay the performance back to the driver’s Smart phone. Combined with the Track layout and lap time information it can help improve the driver’s performance and tyre life while on track (and road) by keeping the tyres in their optimal range.
The event saw us join up with multiple championship winning driver, Oliver Webb, to test the real world benefits around the circuit. We took along some of our development cars in our 991.2 Carrera T and our Nissan GT-R.
Once you have input the vehicle and circuit information into the system you simply need to drive the car a short distance to register the sensors. The App then gives you recommended tyre pressures based on the circuit layout and weather conditions. In the case of the Porsche this meant running 2.1 bar in the left hand tyres and 2.3 bar in the right hand tyres. The Smart phone is mounted on the windscreen with the secure mount (provided with the kit) and this makes it easy to check on the tyre conditions while driving.
On circuit the App clearly displays the pressure and temperatures of each corner in four coloured boxes. As the pressure/temperature improves the boxes change colour and eventually turn green when in the optimum range. After some installation laps you can return to the pits where the App recommends the adjustments required to further improve their performance.
Along with the lap timer and league table you are able to replay the lap and monitor the time it takes to get the tyres up to temperature and crucially it shows you when the pressure or temperature begins to raise too quickly. This is great for limiting your runs to get the maximum performance from the tyre and limit the tyre wear.
Those that have already experienced the Michelin Cup 2 tyres will already know how good these tyres are but the Track Connect option adds a real benefit to Trackday users. Both cars worked really well on the Cup 2s despite being very different in their handling, weight and power delivery. Oliver was particularly impressed with the Carrera T’s chassis balance and GT-Rs raw power. Michelin had technical people on hand to talk us through the Track Connect system and were keen to take our feedback and suggestions on-board.
Overall the Track Connect system worked well and was like having a full time Michelin technician on hand to advice on the tyre performance. The system will be especially useful on cars without Tyre Pressure monitoring displays but both experts and novices alike will find the range of information really useful.
Special thank you to RMA Trackdays for the circuit time and for providing another well run event.
We’re looking forward to trying Track Connect tyres on more of our cars very soon.