By Gary Gastelu
Air compressor manufactures take note.
Polaris has begun production of a non-pneumatic tire for all terrain vehicles.
The company has begun deliveries of its MV850 ATV fitted with the flat-proof TerrainArmor tires to the U.S. Special Operations Forces, and plans to introduce a retail version soon.
The innovation is more of a wheel/tire combination that features a rubber tread band supported by a polymeric web for structure that is also able to deform like an air-filled tire as it rolls over obstacles to provide cushioning.
Polaris says the tires can take a shot from a .50 caliber round without failing, and one was driven on for over 1,000 miles off-road after it was punctured by a railroad spike. They’ve been tested up to 5,000 miles on ATVs packed with a full combat load.
Earlier this year, the company donated several of the vehicles to the Salvation Army to assist with relief efforts in the wake of the Moore tornado in Oklahoma, and says they performed perfectly while traversing the debris left by the storm.
A Polaris representative tells FoxNews.com that they are working on versions that will fit additional vehicles in the company’s lineup, including some of its side-by-side UTVs.
An official date hasn’t been announced, but he added that consumer sales could begin within six months.