Uniroyal RainSport 3: test session
To evaluate the performance of its RainSport 3, tyre manufacturer Uniroyal invited us to the Valencia race track, in Spain. A deliberate choice intended to show participants the consistency of this new tyre.
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Behind the wheel of a Mini JCW Challenge
Various workshops were proposed. The first took place on a kart track behind the wheel of a real racing car, the Mini John Cooper Works Challenge.
Different steering angles are required to negotiate this particularly twisty track which alternates hairpin bends and tight corners.
The aggressive vehicle design, the abrasive surface and the highly technical track put the tyres to the test. For a touring tyre, under these very (too?) demanding conditions, the RainSport 3 performs extremely well. On the whole, the tyre leaves a positive feeling and is responsive, even if it is not designed for trackdays.
On the track
To get an idea of this tyre’s potential in real conditions Uniroyal suggested we drive round the specially configured Valencia track. The track was divided into sections alternating wet and dry areas. The RainSport 3 excels in these conditions. Even if it is not as precise as the ContiSportContact 5, dry handling is good and it delivers a top quality performance. The RainSport 3 demonstrates precise handling and consistent regularity on all vehicles provided for the test (Golf 7 GTi, Seat Leon TFSi 180 hp, Mercedes GLA etc.).
The wet performance of the RainSport 3 was largely expected, and did not disappoint. Its efficiency is quite impressive and despite a significant depth of water, the tyre clears its way through with a certain insolence to give the vehicle a reassuring stability. Entering corners is precise, and even when an exaggerated driving style is adopted, the tyre plays its role to perfection, limiting over and under steering effects.
According to Uniroyal the RainSport 3 is more fuel efficient than its predecessor, handling is better and braking distances are reduced by 8% on wet roads.
Although we did not get the chance to evaluate its progress, we were able to assess the safety aspect and the consistent performance of this tyre which positions itself as a key player in its segment.
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