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We've done it again, six years in a row for Bridgestone.
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Bridgestone and BMW have shared a long-standing partnership together which spans almost two decades. Bridgestone is the choice for supplying tyres to some BMW vehicles - such as the latest 7 series and X1 - and also for exclusive and collaborative ventures such as racing, innovative run-flat tyres and the BMW Driving Experience program.
But with BMW’s recent expansion into electric vehicles, the partnership has grown even further, with Bridgestone supplying tyres for use on both the BMW i3 and i8 models. The key criteria for BMW when choosing the right tyres was finding the best combination of safety and performance in all conditions.
The BMW i8 features cutting edge technology and a hybrid electric drivetrain which consists of an electric motor located in the front axle powering the front wheels and a petrol turbocharged engine powering the rear axle. Individually, the front electric motor produces 96kW of power and 250Nm of torque, while the 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine produces 164kW of power and 300Nm of torque at the rear wheels.
The combined power output is 266kW of power and 570Nm of torque, and helps the i8 accelerate 0-100km/h in just 4.0sec. Despite how quick the i8 is, it only consumes just 2.1L/100km - far less than nearly any current supercar. For the i8, the best tyre performance possible was crucial and Bridgestone was chosen as the exclusive supplier.
Bridgestone developed the perfect tyre to match the supercar spec of the BMW i8 that would help provide high levels of grip but also low rolling resistance and excellent efficiency. The result was the Bridgestone Potenza S001 high-performance specification tyre specially developed for the i8’s characteristics.
In total, four different tyre specifications were approved to be fitted, including:
Front: 195/50 R20 Potenza S001-I 93W XL
Rear: 215/45 R20 Potenza S001-I 95W XL
Front: 215/45 R20 Potenza S001 95W XL
Rear: 245/40 R20 Potenza S001 99W XL
An optional Bridgestone Blizzak LM-32 winter tyre is also available for increased performance in hard winter weather conditions.
It’s little wonder Bridgestone was chosen as the choice of partner to supply the best tyre for the BMW i8 given the success of the both brands in the automotive industry both on and off the racing track. The challenge of delivering a car and tyre package that could be both performance-driven and efficient is just another achievement for the long standing partnership.
What other motorsport partnerships are legendary? Let us know in the comments section or join the conversation on Facebook.