Saturday, July 20, 2024

Hankook confirm same specification of tyre to be used in 2024

Despite having faced plenty of criticism from the drivers this season, ABB FIA Formula E World Championship tyre supplier Hankook have confirmed that changes won’t be made to the tyres for Season Ten, which will be the South Korean manufacturer’s second season as the all-electric championship’s tyre supplier.

Hankook replaced Michelin this season for the start of Gen3 and have certainly endured a challenging start to life in the series, following several complaints at every round so far this season. Drivers have often complained about how little grip Hankook’s compound gives them, with the general consensus amongst the field being that the tyre is too hard.

This has been evident most notably during the opening minutes of any session this year, with the tyre squeal in particular having been deathening. As a result of the tyres being so hard, the Gen3 cars are currently unable to perform to their maximum. Softer tyres would improve lap times considerably, given that the drivers would be able to take several corners much faster than they have done this season, due to the lack of grip.

Hankook’s European Motorsport Director Manfred Sandbichler isn’t currently too concerned with the criticism being directed at the tyres, and was pleased to confirm that “next year’s season will be the same tyre”.

“It’s always easy to say the tyre is hard, the grip level is not enough,” Sandbichler told Autosport

“Think about what we are doing here now in Gen3 – we have a new car, we have everything new, so that means everybody has to learn.

“When you change something essential like the tyres, there’s always a big impact for the whole championship.

“But as long as you deliver a safe product, a quick product and a product which shows the same performance from the first until the last lap I guess there’s nothing to complain [about] seriously. This is a driver’s job to complain.”

A key reason as to why new tyres won’t be introduced next season is because of a recent fire at one of the company’s factories in South Korea, which has caused disruption to it’s production of tyres across the world.

The fire scorched the factory in question back in March but will thankfully have no impact on their agreement with Formula E, with Sandbichler confirming that the company will have “no problems” supplying tyres for the second half of the 2022/23 season.

“Luckily the Formula E tyres are not impacted in the fire at our factory,” added Sandbichler.

“For this year’s season we have no problems at all because the tyres for this year’s season are already produced. For Formula E no issues at all.”