is becoming an evermore complex operation.’ Further-
more, Haupt sees a trend towards using organic raw
materials in order to ensure greater sustainability in the
development process.
The challenges of the future
Besides the increasing demands already mentioned,
Haupt expects one thing in particular in the future: further
legal provisions. ‘It won’t be long before the issue of
tyre labelling explodes. For every tyre, in a similar way to
refrigerators, we are compelled to state the fuel efficiency
class, wet grip class and rolling noise class, together with
the corresponding values. Unfortunately, these labels
look different from one country to the next, which
presents us with a demanding task.’
External rolling noise reduction will soon also be specified
by the EU. That is a particular challenge for a sports car
manufacturer with wide tyres. ‘At Porsche, this means
that we will have to reduce the noise of the tyres by
three or four decibels over the coming years – a huge
challenge which once again necessitates technological
changes in the tyre industry, because the tread and the
compounds will have to be modified. As a result, I am
also convinced that, in terms of performance, there will
no longer be any scope for developing further major en-
hancements in future.’
It is clear to us that the challenges faced by Haupt and
his team are diverse. The sphere of activity in which they
are operating is subject to constant tension, so his follow-
ing statement comes as no real surprise: ‘It all involves a
great deal of work. Yet the real art lies in bringing every-
one together, both internally at Porsche, e.g. to coordin-
ate the control systems and chassis, and among the
Porsche employees and tyre manufacturers. There is
increasing complexity; people have to communicate
with one another – and that takes place at an incredible
speed these days.’
As we take our leave, Michael Haupt gives us a piece of
good news to take back to the HF MIXING GROUP: ‘I do
not envisage that we will see a rubber-free tyre within
the next six to eight years.’
We wish to thank Michael Haupt for talking to us and
giving us an interesting insight into his work!
Alternative engines are even finding their way into high-performance vehicles (pictured: the Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid).
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