​Scorpion: safe driving even in wet conditions

Here is how the new SUV tyre prevents aquaplaning and enables vehicle control in rain.

Home Road Cars Tyres ​Scorpion: safe driving even in wet conditions

The warm season doesn't always bring full days of sunshine. It is in fact during sudden downpours or days of bad weather that the right tyres allow you to travel safely even on wet roads. The new Pirelli Scorpion summer tyre for Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) can help drivers overcome these situations, as it has been designed taking into account the heavier weight, high centre of gravity, unique mechanics and driving dynamics of this type of vehicle, which differentiates it substantially in manoeuvres, compared to the more traditional sedans or station wagons.


Rain and wet roads increase the risk of aquaplaning. This phenomenon is caused by the force exerted by water under the tyre and can lead to the vehicle being lifted, preventing the driver from performing any driving manoeuvres. This is a condition of potential risk for the safety and control of the car, not only because of the very limited, if any, possibility for the driver to steer it, but also because of the lack of foresight when it occurs.

It is mainly thanks to the tread design, optimised through virtual modelling with the corresponding footprint, that this dangerous phenomenon is prevented. In fact, the new Pirelli Scorpion summer tyre features a new asymmetric tread pattern characterised by particular stiffness, an innovative block design and a new compound, allowing to improve braking on dry (7%) and wet (7%) surfaces compared to the previous Scorpion Verde. The values of the European wet brake label for this tyre are all in the A or B class, promoting greater driving safety.

The compound of the new Scorpion plays an important role because it contains a new generation of synthetic rubber that helps to ensure the right balance between the different characteristics of the product: low rolling resistance, excellent braking performance in wet conditions and uniform tread wear throughout the life of the product. Though the compound of the new Scorpion originates in the technological experience already applied to the new Cinturato P7 tyres, it has been made more rigid to cope with the special qualities of this vehicle type. In fact, it is enriched with silica, specific resins with the task of increasing grip and functionalised polymers – innovative elastomeric materials that improve interaction with the silica itself.

These polymeric materials have the ability to change their behaviour depending on the operating temperature. This new compound has a form of "mechanical intelligence", thanks to a better distribution of the silica particles and the interaction between them, which allows it to vary its behaviour according to driving conditions and temperature, providing the driver with a very wide window of ideal operation, both on dry and wet roads. Moreover, the innovative Scorpion compound was developed using a process patented by Pirelli and derived from its experience in motorsport, a process that allows to maximize the homogeneity of the components of the compound, thus favouring longer tyre performance on different road surfaces, especially in wet conditions where driving conditions become more critical.


Safe driving means being able to rely on tyre grip when cornering in wet conditions or when braking and in typical emergency manoeuvres such as sudden steering. It is always the tread that we ask to accomplish this task through the combination of its design and its footprint on the road, with the interaction between the stiffness of its structure and its compound. Following Pirelli's Eco-Safety approach applied to the dynamics and weight of SUVs, a special reinforced tyre structure has been adopted in order to aid controllability in emergency manoeuvres (such as avoiding an obstacle or sudden braking); this reinforced structure is able to withstand the high load transfers on the tyres, facilitating correct pressure distribution in the footprint and allowing for a balanced and controllable dynamic response of the vehicle, particularly in situations of wet or damp road surfaces.