Michelin has just launched the new Michelin Pilot Sport 5, and it looks to be a very interesting, but perhaps not what we expected, update!
First up, some general information to clear up some confusion online. This tyre is not a replacement for the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 AND 4S. The Michelin Pilot Sport 5 (PS5) directly replaces the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 (PS4), and while there's been no official announcement about the replacement of the Pilot Sport 4 S (PS4S), it is likely this will be replaced at some point in the future.
The "non-S" version of the Pilot Sport summer tyre range has always been aimed at smaller wheel sizes, and is slightly less performance orientated than the "S version". As an example, in Europe the Pilot Sport 4 was available from 16" to 22" wheel sizes, and aimed at the segment of cars and SUVs which need less ultimate performance, and a little more comfort.
This is the segment of user the PS5 is aimed at.
The Pilot Sport 4 S, in Europe at least, started in 19" for most of its life and went up to 23", offering slightly improved dry and wet grip and handling, at the expense of a little comfort and rolling resistance. The differences were small, but they existed.
North America is a slightly different market, and they had almost no sizes of the PS4 instead having the PS4S in 16" and above. According to the press releases it's likely that North America will have a little more availability of the PS5, especially while we're globally waiting for the replacement of the PS4S.
Tyre Reviews will first be testing the PS5 in March against all it's premium rivals, including the new Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 6, but there are some key things we can learn from the press releases and data floating around online. Or more to the point, some of the lack of data...