Pirelli Safety Wheel System

SWS, the first tire that re-inflates itself, now for SUVs

It is called the Safety Wheel System (SWS™) & it is not exactly new: the system, designed for motorcycles, was already a reality in 2004. What is new today is that it can be seen working on a motorbike involved in dynamic tests for the first time.

The SWS™ interacts with a possible anomaly in inflation pressure in a completely revolutionary way: due to the air contained in a custom-made tank integrated into the rim, part of air pressure lost inside a punctured tire is replaced.

In this case, too, the activation of the mechanism is by a sensor fitted inside the rim. When the sensor registers a loss of pressure, the tank's air release system is activated via a connecting valve between the tank & the tire cavity. The air loss is also shown on a visible warning display fitted to the motorcycle.

Now, the SWS™ system is being given its world preview on the first prototype of an SUV rim. The mechanism has the same basis as that of the motorcycle, with the obvious difference that the tank's capacity is greater. In this case, the pressure-reading sensor that registers a loss of pressure is positioned on the tire valve. Different from the motorcycle & clearly oriented towards original equipment, the SWS™ system for SUVs is also of great significance on the replacement market, as it can be used with both conventional & Run Flat tires.

The advantages of the SWS™ system:

  • Natural deflation. The system compensates the natural loss of pressure, constantly & continuously, ensuring the tire remains devoid of anomalies. Both on motorcycles & the SUVs, the capacity of the tank permits the maintenance of an optimum pressure for a period of 9-12 months.
  • Puncture. The system enables the tire to be re-inflated, rectifying the puncture in part & delaying a total loss of air. In that way, deflation time is lengthened, notably improving safety & providing more time & space in which to bring the vehicle back into a safe situation. The advantage is especially evident on a motorbike, reducing the possibility of falling off as a result of the longer interval of reaction ensured; the same is the case for SUVs, especially if the puncture takes place at high speed.