As long as I can remember, (and in fact for far longer than I can remember), tires have been the same general shape and size. Sure, as tire technology has improved, manufacturers have offered larger wheel sizes with lower sidewall profiles, but a tire has pretty much always been a cylinder that works most effectively when a car is going straight. This allows the tire to rest evenly on its sidewalls, which for all time have been the same size.
Enter the Optima Sports “CamberTire,” a tire that is not shaped like a cylinder, but rather like a cone. Its outer diameter is larger than the inner diameter, meaning it has either 2, 3, or 4 degrees of integrated camber (depending on the model), allowing you to run lots of camber in a track or street car without any of the normal side effects of camber, such as increased inner tire wear. It looks a bit silly on the car, but Optima Sports and its founder John Scott promises that his invention will revolutionize the way tires are designed. According to them, the CamberTires offer increased lateral grip, improved braking, steering feel, and efficiency. They say the tires also wear more evenly than standard tires, even while drifting, and provide increased ride quality and fuel efficiency. That’s all nice, but the question is, do they work? We took two Mitsubishi Evo’s to the Hyundai Proving Grounds to find out.