Nokian Line and zLine SUV: tested by rezulteo
Nokian has always been categorized, and rightly so, in the Nordic and winter tyre specialists category. Over the past few years, the Finnish tyre manufacturer has proved that its summer range delivers similar performance. We were given the opportunity to check this by testing two new products: the Line and zLine SUV.
Nokian is currently renewing its summer range for 4X4s/SUVs. In 2015, the range will include the Rotiiva AT , the Rotiiva HT, the Line SUV and the zLine SUV. The latter two being the products that could be sold in greater quantities since they are designed for small and medium sized SUVs for the Line and large SUVs for the zLine.
Line SUV: offering versatility
The Nokian Line SUV is a tyre focused on versatility for drivers looking for a safe and durable product. Built for vehicles such as the Toyota Rav 4 or the BMW X1 (available for rim diameters ranging from 15 to 18 inches), the tyre has been designed to be used in urban traffic and on rough roads alike.
The casing and structure of the Line SUV have been specially developed. Special attention has been paid to the tyre’s durability, and in particular, its sidewall reinforced with aramid fibres; a choice that also ensures greater longevity, steering precision and responsiveness.
The tread has been designed to promote water evacuation (Aqua Groove technology) and stone removal, while the rubber compound helps achieve low values for rolling resistance.
zLine SUV: durability and performance
The zLine is the logical step forward from the Line. Developed to equip large SUVs (available for 17 to 22 inch rim diameters), it is clearly geared towards driving pleasure and performance.
The zLine features the technical solutions adopted for the Line with adjustments to comply with its sportier specifications.
As a result, the sidewalls have also been reinforced to offer maximum protection against impacts and cuts which SUV tyres are often confronted with. The aramid used for the Line and zLine sidewalls is a compound also used in bullet proof vests. A guarantee for durability…
Reinforced blocks on the stiff shoulders of the tread are designed to promote grip in all conditions, not forgetting the safety dimension, particularly on wet roads.
Neither has the zLine neglected longevity and fuel efficiency with a tread compound developed in accordance.
Tested on Finnish roads
Nokian invited us to an area near Helsinki to see how these two new tyres handle.
For once, we started by testing the sportiest one, the zLine. A test, which began with a few laps of a twisty and hilly track, punctuated with avoidance manoeuvres on low grip areas. In these conditions, the tyre is very precise, and on the whole, stands up to the abusive treatment. The tight corners and alternating terrain made it possible to assess the tyre’s grip and responsiveness. However, the tyre sometimes seemed a bit noisy when driving fast.
Aimed to demonstrate the Line’s versatility, the test session alternated between driving on motorways, minor roads as well as on dirt tracks in Finnish forests. While leaving a positive overall impression, the test was a bit short to be able to evaluate the tyre in more demanding conditions.
Once again, Nokian confirms its deliberate attempt to change the hierarchy among premium tyre manufacturers. And the least that can be said is that the Finnish brand ensures it has the technological resources to offer high quality products. Wait for the first test results to see whether these ambitious tyres live up to their promise.
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