Summer testing at Pirelli’s Sottozero Centre in Lapland is about to begin as the winter testing season comes to a close. This signifies a new era for the proving ground as the tire manufacturer starts its first batch of summer analyses there. With the growth in product development within the company – notably for all-season and winter tires on both dry and wet roads – Pirelli has had to increase its testing shifts.
For summer use, dry handling and wet handling circuits, each 1,200m-long, have been built. In a nutshell, the Sottozero Centre opened in 2017 and was expanded a year later. Situated in Flurheden, around 900km north of Stockholm, Sweden, it covers an area of 120ha, which includes 250,000m2 of circuits and 1,300m2 of buildings with workshops and facilities for test personnel. The facility inventory includes handling circuits, an open test area, and tracks with inclines of up to 20%. There’s also a 400m straight to test both dry and wet braking.
The tire maker also uses its Vizzola Ticino facility near Milan, which has specialized in wet handling for more than half a century, as well as the new Circuito Panamericano in Brazil.
Tires for different types of vehicles can be developed on site including EVs.