Continental Sime Tyre Sdn Bhd (CST) has recently added the Continental ContiSportContact 5 (CSC5) to its range, making Malaysia the first recipient of this new ultra-high performance (UHP) tyre in the Asia Pacific region. On the shelves since April 2011, the tyre was officially launched yesterday at the Sepang International Circuit.
From its predecessor tyre, the CSC3, Continental claims that the CSC5 is able to provide markedly reduced braking distances, reduced rolling resistance (by 10%), and improved fuel mileage (by 13%). The simultaneous improvement of rolling resistance and outright grip is thanks to what Continental calls its BlackChilli Compound rubber formula.
When developing the tyre, Continental found that the vibrations of the tyre are significantly different when braking and cruising. The BlackChilli compound reacts to the higher natural frequency of the tyre at high braking and ‘switches on’, absorbing heat and providing more grip. At the lower frequencies during cruising, however, BlackChilli ‘switches off’, and this contributes to lower rolling resistance, which leads to what everybody wants today – lower fuel consumption.
There is a great emphasis from Continental on how the CSC5 is able to shorten stopping distances in the dry and wet, and perhaps it was just as well then that the heavens opened their taps as we were about to set out to test the CSC5s on the SIC’s North Track in our BMW 325i test cars. Each test driver had the opportunity to go a few half-laps around the North Track, but not before a couple of braking exercises taken out of the BMW Driver Training handbook.
The first of two braking exercises was a simple sprint down the straight line and jam-braking at the marker cones. Second exercise is brake, steer, and avoid, where similar to the first exercise, you sprint towards the marker cones and jam the brakes, but this time you are required to steer your car to the adjacent lane at the same time. In these two exercises, the cars stopped and steered with reassuring confidence, but let’s not forget to credit the BMW’s strong brakes and chassis setup as well.
Indeed, the 325i’s superb chassis balance and feedback allowed us to get a good feel of the CSC5’s grip levels. At the tighter turns, there was progressive understeer that was very easily correctable. Due to the wet surface, the DTC system was triggered almost every time at Turn 1, Turn 2, and Turn 4, but there was never any loss of composure. There were no hairy moments whatsoever, but whether the CSC5 or the 325i’s chassis had the bigger contribution to that is anyone’s guess.
Engineered in Germany, and fully imported from Europe, the CSC5 is suitable for use in high performance cars, and sporty SUVs like the BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne. As of now, the CSC5 is available in 15 different sizes for the Malaysian market with more sizes to come in due course. The tyres are currently available at selected Continental Ultra High Performance dealers. Prices start from RM600 per piece upwards.
Size range – cars: (UPDATED: 27 June 2011)
205/50 R 17 W XL
215/50 R 17 W XL
225/50 R 17 Y XL
205/45 R 17 W XL
215/45 R 17 W / W XL
225/45 R 17 W
225/45 R 18 Y XL
235/45 R 18 Y XL
245/40 R 17 W
225/40 R 18 Y XL
Size range – SUVs:
235/55 R 18 V
255/50 R 19 Y XL
275/45 R 19 Y XL
275/40 R 20 Y XL
275/45 R 20 Y XL