Michelin is using sunflower oil in its new Primacy MXM4 luxusry passenger tire. The oil helps increase traction at low temperatures for braking and handling in wet conditions and improves performance in snow. The company's research shows that the use of sunflower oil in the tire formulates braking distance by two car-lenghts, or up to 19 feet, compared to a leading competitor's tire.
"Farmers don't necessarily think about tire manufacturers as an end user when they plant sunflowers," says Michael Burroughes, director of marketing for ag tires for Michelin North America. "The incorporation of sunflower oil to enhance traction on the passenger vehicle tire side is another example of how Michelin as a company continues to invest in research and technology to improve tire innovation. Sometimes you don't have to look much further than your kitchen for inspiration."