Four years and countless miles of testing later, Nokian Tyres has released the Hakkapeliitta (Hakka) 9, likely the most revolutionary of studded winter tires and one of the most exciting innovations to come out of Nokian Tyres’ White Hell testing centre in Ivalo, Finland.
The company that invented the winter tire announced the Hakka 9 for passenger vehicles and SUV’s would be in North American stores in fall 2017. In western Canada, Kal Tire is the exclusive dealer of Nokian Tyres.
During design, development and testing, Nokian’s newest studded winter tire was “fine-tuned to master extreme conditions” before making its way to Canada.
“One of our starting points was to develop a completely new studded tire that combines balanced longitudinal and lateral (side-to-side) grip with eco-friendliness,” says Juha Pirhonen, vice president of research and development, Nokian Tyres.
What makes the Hakka 9 so unique?
DUAL STUD DESIGN
The Hakka 9’s stud technology features two differnt types of studs so these studded winter tires can handle even the worst winter conditions.
The studs on the shoulders provide best-in-class lateral (side-to-side) grip when drivers are turning on slippery corners. The studs in the centre extend reliable longitudinal (up and down) grip during braking and accelerating.”
“The upper part of the stud body is bevelled, which allows the stud to penetrate even deeper into the ice than before; this further improves braking grip and lateral grip,” says Pirhonen.
REDUCED ROAD IMPACT
While the bevelled hard metal tips of the Hakka 9’s shoulder studs have been designed to distribute the stud’s impact across a wider area during cornering, the tire’s studs have also been designed to dampen road contact.
Nokian’s new Eco 9 Stud Concept uses a pocket of air in the lower range to act as a cushion and reduce stud impact.
“This technical innovation offers improved, precise handling under slippery conditions.”
FROM DRY ROADS TO BLACK ICE
Nokian says even though Hakka 9 studded winter tires can help keep vehicles on even the iciest roads, it also performs on snowy and even dry roads.
Two uniquely Nokian winter tire technologies come into play: snow grip boosters act as sharp, biting edges on tread blocks for snow grip in both directions; and aggressive deep snow grooves on the shoulder dig into the heavy and hard-packed snow.
Since a lot of winter driving takes on bare roads, Nokian fitted the Hakka 9 with a tread pattern that’s rigid and unified at the bottom so more grooves make contact with the road.
The rubber compound of this studded tire also plays an important role: grippy, crystal-like silica combines with tear-resistant canola oil, natural rubber and a new Green Elasto Proof biomaterial that keeps the rubber soft and elastic at low temperatures—year after year.
Drivers will also appreciate Nokian’s standard driving safety indicators to show how much tread is remaining, and the new winter safety indicator, which shows when the manufacturer recommends the tires be replaced.
“Leveraging 80 years and millions of miles driven on Hakkapeliittas, our team developed the safest, most comfortable winter tire,” says Tommi Jeinonen, president of Nokian Tyres North America.
The Nokian Hakkapeliitta 9 is designed for small family cars and SUV’s alike and covers 52 sizes from 14 to 20 inches.
Not sure if your driving needs suit studded winter tires or another type of winter tire? Talk to Kal! Our winter tire experts are available in-store or online to answer your questions and guide you to the tire that suits your needs best! Or, if you’re convinced the Hakka 9’s for you, purchase and book your install appointment online!