PlayStation’s Gran Turismo franchise has a new ‘official tyre technology partner’ – Michelin. In this capacity, the tyre maker will share experience gained in real-world race series.
The multi-year collaboration was announced on 23 August, prior to the start of the 2019 FIA Certified Gran Turismo Championships at the PlayStation Theater in New York City. Michelin was also ‘official tyre supplier’ to the weekend’s game.
The relationship between Michelin and PlayStation begins with free downloadable content on Gran Turismo Sport. This is available to users by October 2019; the Michelin-themed download features:
• A new Michelin section on the Gran Turismo Sport ‘Brand Central’ virtual museum. This introduces players to Michelin’s history in global motorsports, performance and innovation.
• Tyre technology by Michelin available in the ‘Tuning’ section of Gran Turismo Sport, applicable to the game’s established hard, medium and soft formats.
• On-track branding elements and scenography from many of the world’s most celebrated motorsports competitions and venues.
Racetrack to road – and gaming
Michelin uses its involvement in motorsports around the world as a laboratory, collecting vast amounts of real-world data for tyre modelling and simulation. It transfers technologies to tyres for roadgoing cars, including many that appear in Gran Turismo. Michelin will share this knowledge openly with Sony. The aim is to offer Gran Turismo players a new dimension of strategy and competition linked to tyre selection and performance, drawing them ever closer to the pit-level decisions that race teams evaluate on every track.
“This relationship is a perfect match, connecting the most successful virtual driving experience with the global leader for high-performance tyres,” said Scott Clark, executive vice president of the Michelin Group’s Americas region. “Michelin leads the industry in tyre simulation. Michelin develops and tunes virtual tyres on virtual vehicles before the tyres are even produced, with extremely accurate translation to real tyres on real vehicles. Combining this technology with real motorsports data will enable Sony to bring more tyre strategy into the game, and in the longer term, also helps more people understand the critical role that Michelin tyres play in optimising vehicle performance.”
“The FIA Certified Gran Turismo Championships is founded on a technical base established through 25 years of automotive physics simulation within Gran Turismo, and the unique automotive culture it has achieved over the years. With its passion for motorsports and solid engineering knowledge, having Michelin, the world’s leading tyre brand, come on board as an official tyre supplier of The Championships and technical partner helps us continue our vision of bridging the gap between virtual and real racing. The partnership also further highlights these events as the future of motorsports,” said Kazunori Yamauchi, series producer and president of Polyphony Digital Inc.