Why are Tire Manufacturers Formula 1 Partners?

The Formula 1 auto racing circuit presents some of the most exciting sporting events in the world. These race car drivers go 300 km/h (or more) for approximately 70 consecutive laps to win the race. Canada is lucky to be one of the many stops of the international circuit with races also scheduled in Dubai, Monaco and Shanghai. Every June, racers and fans flock to Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix weekend. This tradition dates back to the 1960s.

Tires are the only direct contact a car has with the road. It's no wonder then that Pirelli, the official tire manufacturer for the Formula 1 since 2011, creates tires with incredible road grip, braking capabilities and traction. Find out below how these Formula 1 tire technologies end up being  adapted to our (very) normal cars.

The general public (like you and me) do benefit from the sophisticated technologies developed by tire manufactures for the Formula 1. The components of the tires and their design trickle down to the generic tires sold to us. The research and advancements that render Ferrari, Mercedes, Aston Martin, McLaren competitive is then adapted for our Honda's, Toyota's and Kia's, so we can also feel a little bit like race car drivers.

Belairdirect magazine sat down with Orazio Mastracchio, Nafta Motorsport Manager, Pirelli Tire North America & PR Manager at Pirelli Tire Canada, who explained: "The investment we make in F1 research and development enables us to transfer new technologies and production processes to the so-called 'passenger' side. It's comforting for a mother or a father to know that the technology used for the tires of a F1 car is the same as for a family sedan or van."

Firstly, it's important to understand the huge difference between F1 and road tires. F1 tires have a much shorter life expectancy; they are made for speed, and every tire has a type of temperature linked to its use. Pirelli has a range of 9 tires, going from hypersoft to wet, for a perfect match between weather conditions and tire. Formula 1 tires are also much wider, rigid and taller than road tires to grip the road better so they can go faster.

The only real similarity between everyday use tires and Formula 1 tires is that both need a good grip and adherence to the road.



F1 Tire Innovations Used on Our Road Tires Today

  1. Water Evacuation

Our tires have a great capacity for evacuating water because of the F1 technologies. The drainage technologies were transferred to our road tires. This means that aquaplaning happens much less often than it used to. The draining takes care of removing any water that could make your car slip on the road.

We recommend the Pirelli - Scorpion Verde All Season : See the tire

  1. Wet Braking

Wet braking is a technology used in summer tires that allows the car to break properly on wet roads. This innovation goes hand in hand with how tires evacuate water.

We recommend the Pirelli - P Zero : See the tire

  1. Lateral Grip

Having a stronger lateral grip means better fuel efficiency and better traction. This allows cars to develop more power without using more fuel.

We recommend the Pirelli - P4 Four Season Plus : See the tire

  1. High Temperatures

Before Pirelli was the exclusive Formula 1 partner, Michelin made racing tires. They developed tires that  would perform even in the heat. Since the cars go extremely fast, the tires heat up. Michelin ensured the tire's components would stay adherent and grip the road at high temperatures and high speed.

See all the Pirelli tires here.



Of course, even though Pirelli is the official Formula 1 partner, other tire brands have developed similar tires to reproduce them for every day driving. They develop new technologies so tires can perform better in any kind of weather.

Now that you know that some of the Formula 1 tire technologies trickle down to road tires, you can drive your Honda Civic or your Subaru Outback with a little bit more pride. When it rains, you'll know you can brake more easily and that your tires evacuate water more effectively owing to F1 technologies. You can show off your new knowledge to your friends and family. We are certain they will be quite impressed with your car wisdom.

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Traction - dry road

Dry-road traction is a tire's ability to brake effectively and respond well to the steering wheel on dry roads.

Traction - wet road

Wet traction is a tire's resistance to hydroplaning and its ability to provide safe driving in wet conditions.

Traction - snowy road

Snow-covered road traction is a tire's ability to operate on partially or completely snow-covered pavement.

Traction - icy road

Ice traction is a tire's ability to operate on partially or completely ice-covered pavement.


Durability refers to how many kilometres a tire can go before it stops performing.


Comfort refers to the ride quality of a tire and the noise it emits on the road.