The Michelin Brand Experience returns to the Sepang International Circuit following a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19.
This time around, the main stars of the three-day extravaganza were the Michelin Pilot Sport 5 as well as the Michelin SUV+. We had a go during the first day of the Michelin Brand Experience to, well, experience what both the new Pilot Sport 5 and Primacy SUV+ had to offer.
To highlight the capabilities of its two new tyre offerings, the Michelin Brand Experience was basically divided into four different categories – road comfort test, wet braking, gymkhana, and on-track performance.
The combination of four was selected to highlight not only the comfort of the Pilot Sport 5 and Primacy SUV+, but also how much they’ve evolved over the years as well as how well they perform in a multitude of different driving scenarios.
We set off on the first part of the day with the noise and comfort test. The testbed was a couple of Toyota Fortuners fitted with the Michelin Primacy SUV+ as well as a set of rubbers from its closest competitors.
It was a short drive around the outside of the Sepang International Circuit, but it was enough to showcase the Primacy SUV+’s comfort and quietness using a sound level meter or decibel meter. At 30km/h, the Michelin Primacy SUV+ was on average 5dB quieter than the competitor. At one point, we even registered closer to 10dB.
It might not look like a lot, especially at such slow speeds, but you can basically imagine the gap in comfort and tyre noise once it reaches highway speeds.
Next, we were brought to the wet braking test segment where we got to test out both the Pilot Sport 5 and Primacy SUV+ in terms of braking performance in the wet. Fitted to a bunch of Mercedes-Benz vehicles (courtesy of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia) the test was simple – drive as fast as possible and brake as hard as possible upon reaching the wet portion of the straight.
On average, the brand new set of Michelin Pilot Sport 5 managed to brake to a complete stop at around 25 metres. That’s 5 metres shorter than its closest competitor. What’s even more amazing was the fact that the tests were replicated using a different set of used tyres for both the Michelin and the competitor, and the result was around 27 metres for the used Pilot Sport 5 and over 36 metres for the used competitor brand.
The same can be said about the Primacy SUV+ which managed to outperform its closest competitor by about 2 metres when tested as brand new and used. Unsurprisingly, the Pilot Sport 5 outperformed its competitors in both the low-speed gymkhana session as well as the on-track high-speed handling segment.
In essence, Michelin was able to ‘evolve’ the Pilot Sport 4 into the Pilot Sport 5 by offering the same levels of grip and performance for both wet and dry conditions but also increasing its longevity as well maintaining that performance until the end of the tyre’s life cycle.
It’s a similar story for the Primacy SUV+ and both of them come with the Premium Touch sidewall design to further elevate its style to match with premium vehicles like the Mercedes-Benz models presented during the Michelin Brand Experience.
In short, both the Michelin Pilot Sport 5 and Primacy SUV+ excel in style as well as substance. If you’re looking for a set of rubbers that perform great in different driving conditions but you also want something that looks luxurious, you can’t go wrong with these two.