GM and Michelin have demonstrated a prototype airless tire with puncture protection.
An interesting development was called Uptis - Unique Puncture-proof Tire System ("Unique, puncture-proof tire system").
Of course, Uptis is far from the first such development. Michelin has previously demonstrated Tweel tires. Tires of this design are not afraid of a puncture, they are not afraid of uneven wear and at the same time they do not need to be constantly pumped up. Due to some design features, the risk of aquaplaning is reduced. Since in theory such a tire will be more reliable and last longer, the negative impact on the environment is reduced. There is also no need to constantly carry a “spare tire” with you, which takes up a lot of space, and it has a lot of weight. Interestingly, the Tweel was also tested by the military, and received positive feedback as a result.
However, the samples shown earlier could only be used at low speeds and were not suitable for use on ordinary passenger cars. In addition, when driving, an increased noise level arose, and the vibration increased. It is also not entirely clear how such a tire will behave in conditions of very dirty roads.
But apparently the developers managed to solve all these problems in the case of Uptis. The new tires will be tested under various conditions on Chevrolet Bolt EV electric vehicles. If everything goes well, then in 2024 their mass production will begin. For which cars Uptis tires will be produced, it is not yet reported, but it is obvious that these will be the creations of the General Motors concern. At least the new versions of the Bolt EV.
By the way, Uptis will be just a godsend for autonomous cars that can drive around the clock, without the risk of a puncture. After all, such a car will not be able to replace a tire on its own.