Nokia, Finland – Nokian Tyres is opening a new technology centre for summer and winter tires in Santa Cruz de la Zarza, Spain in 2017, the Finnish tire-maker announced 20 Sept.
Nokian to build technology centre in Spain
The €16-million test centre will be completed in two phases, with construction scheduled to start in early 2017 and final completion in 2019.
Nokian will be buying the land for the centre, which will include a 5km oval track that encloses the area.
“This oval track with banked curves enables us to test our summer and winter tires with high speed ratings at speeds of up to 300 km/h,” said marketing and communication vice president Antti-Jussi Tähtinen.
There is, he noted, a demand for tires with a high speed rating especially in central Europe and North America - both areas where Nokian is seeking to grow its market position.
At full capacity the test centre is expected to employ 20-30 persons locally as track & maintenance personnel in addition to the test drivers, who will mainly be the same as the ones carrying out the winter properties testing.
Nokian currently tests its summer tires in several tracks, including Papenburg at Germany, Idiada at Spain and Gerotek in South Africa. The company also has a Nordic testing centre, Ivalo Testing Centre, which spans over 700 hectares in Finnish Lapland.
Nokian claims that it uses over half of its R&D spend on product-testing.