Neu-Isenburg, Germany – Hankook Tire has contracted Finnish tire testing company Test World Oy to build its first winter testing facility in Europe, the Korean tire maker has announced.
Sited close to Test World in Ivalo, Finland, the facility will be Hankook’s “exclusive venue” for the expansion of its future winter product testing from December 2016 onwards, said a 10 Dec company release.
The secure proving ground, around 300 km north of the polar circle, will incorporate new test tracks for different test situations and will be equipped with connecting and service roads, according to Hankook.
Preparations for the construction and design work have already started and Hankook expects the entire site to be operational from December 2016.
Hankook premium tires "must be developed and tested within their designated region, reflecting their specific road and weather conditions to fit exactly to the local market needs during the entire year,” said Ho-Youl Pae, head of Hankook Tire in Europe.
“As also a product’s time to market is a key decisive factor nowadays, the new proving ground in Ivalo shall boost effectiveness of our winter testing here in Europe,” the Hankook boss added.
Another project driver, said Hankook, has been the increasingly varying conditions and the uncertain winter in southerly parts of Scandinavia and other Alpine areas over recent times.