Continental imagines retreadable tires made from recyclable materials 

Updated Sep 09, 2021 | Same topic: Automotive Industry Updates

It’s made from rice husks, dandelions, and plastic bottles. 

Tires. They’re a crucial part of a car since they’re responsible for directly delivering the car’s power to the ground to create forward propulsion. And without them, your vehicle is just a lump of steel that you can sit in. In spite of that, the way we use tires hasn’t changed much in the past decades: once they wear out, we buy new ones. That’s not really sustainable, nor is it environmentally friendly. 

A picture of the Conti Green Concept

David O'Donnell, Continental's Global Head of Passenger and Light Truck Tires, together with the Conti GreenConcept

To this end, Continental has come up with the Conti GreenConcept which the tire manufacturer debuted at the 2021 Munich Auto Show. It is lighter than any existing tire in the market, but more than half of the materials used to make the Conti GreenConcept come from renewable sources.  

Specifically, Continental made this prototype from plants and recycled materials. These include silicate from rice husk ash, vegetable oil, and natural rubber from dandelions. It also uses recycled materials like recycled bottles through the ContiRe.Tex technology. This process turns your non-biodegradable Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle into polyester, which is then used as a casing for the said tire. 

A picture of the Conti GreenConcept

A closer look at the Conti GreenConcept's treads

For those unaware, the usual process of making your run-of-the-mill tire involves crude oil, which results in a far larger carbon-footprint. And as mentioned, the tire only weighs in at 7.5 kilograms, plus it has about 25 percent less rolling resistance than the best label “A” tires under the European Tire Label System. 

What the latter means is of course better fuel consumption, lower carbon emissions, and more miles out of your car. According to Continental, it might even be capable of extending an electric car’s range by six percent. The best part, of course, is that it is retreadable up to three times. That might be a more economical alternative to buying new tires outright.

Currently, the Conti GreenConcept is in line with Continental’s immediate plans to become carbon-neutral by 2022. So hopefully, we’ll be seeing this retreadable, environmentally friendly tire on roads soon.

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Cesar G.B. Miguel

Cesar G.B. Miguel


Cesar Guiderone B. Miguel was born and raised in Iligan City, Lanao Del Norte. He graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts in English degree from Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology. He previously worked as a freelance writer for various websites, as a member of the Iligan City Disaster Risk Reduction Management's training staff, and as a medical sales representative.


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