Hanover, October 2020. With more than 2,850 kilometers of broken asphalt, rough gravel and desert sand lying in their path, the drivers in this year’s TransAnatolia Rally already had tough terrain to contend and tricky weather conditions too. But then came the coronavirus pandemic, making life even harder for the participants in the tenth edition of Turkey’s most important motor sport event – one of the most exacting challenges for teams and equipment in global rally raid competition. From the start in Istanbul, via Bolu Abant, Haymana and Karadag, to the grand finale in Sile, the route took in seven stages from the north-west of Turkey to the far south of the country and back – in temperatures rising to 45 degrees Celsius. When all was said and done, the General Tire team of Kerim Tar and co-driver Onur Sirimoglu took victory in the Raid category. “Given the variety of surfaces we were racing on, the quality of the tires was as important for our success as the quality of the vehicle itself,” says Kerim Tar. “The demanding nature of the routes and the really extreme conditions made it essential that we could rely on our equipment one hundred percent. The Grabber AT3 allowed us to push our car to the maximum at every moment of the race.”
The new all-terrain tire from General Tire can not only handle the type of extraordinary test presented by the TransAnatolia, but also deal with everything a modern SUV, pick-up truck or off-road vehicle will throw at a tire on a day-to-day basis. The Grabber AT3 offers a combination of exceptional off-road ability and excellent road manners in all weathers. The large number of gripping edges in its innovative tread allow the Grabber AT3 to interlock with loose surfaces, transferring drive and braking forces to the surface below to the best possible effect. The open shoulder of the tread ensures efficient self-cleaning and delivers added traction in mud. Aggressive shoulder blocks that reach into the sidewall of the tire combine with stacked deflection ribs to prevent the sidewall being damaged by stones, rocks and other debris. The Grabber AT3 is produced in 41 sizes – from 15 to 22 inches – and approved for speeds up to 240 km/h.
General Tire was not only involved in the TransAnatolia as a sponsor and tire supplier, it also assisted the drivers with mechanical expertise during the event. “In these difficult times, it was important for us to support the event to the best of our ability,” says Hüseyin İşsever, Brand Manager General Tire. “The drivers who signed up for this remarkable challenge had the chance to experience at first hand the special abilities of our tires at the limit of what is possible – on, but especially off, the beaten track. It gave them a sense of the boundless capability we are looking to express with our slogan ‘Anywhere is possible’.”