Camber Ridge, LLC is partnering with Teton Capital, LLC to launch a new $60-million state-of-the-art facility for vehicle tire characterization, which will begin operations in 2016. The facility aims to offer all the advantages of testing real tires on real surfaces, but with the precision, environmental control and repeatability of a laboratory environment.
The new facility is located in Charlotte, North Carolina, in the midst of the region’s growing automotive research and manufacturing cluster. Unlike traditional tire testing laboratories that use stationary test equipment, Camber Ridge will test tires on a unique indoor test track—a paved 0.5 mile oval—using specially developed test carriages that are propelled along a guide rail system.
Operations will begin with Camber Ridge’s Genesis tire test carriage, a 9,000N capacity force and moment testing rig intended for passenger vehicle and light commercial tires up to 34-inch diameter and at speeds up to 65 mph. Initial running will be on dry reference surfaces at a controlled ambient temperature but the facility is being designed for phased introductions of additional paved surfaces, water testing and other controlled conditions.
Camber Ridge will be a resource for tire manufacturers, OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers who need to assess the performance of tires in relation to vehicles and road surfaces, rather than simply comparing tire-to-tire.
Teton Capital is a private equity firm with a history of investing in automotive related industries, as well as banking and consumer products.