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Tech Review—Atturo Tire AZ850DR Drag Radials

Posted By: Steve Turner
Tech Review—Atturo Tire AZ850DR Drag Radials
Written by Steve Turner
Photography courtesy of Atturo Tire
Making huge power is an accomplishment, but all that power is wasted at the drag strip when there isn’t enough traction to support it. For pure race cars, there are race-only slicks are up to the task, but for those vehicles balancing street duty and on-track performance, a drag radial is a dual-purpose tire is what the drag-racing doctor ordered. A new player in that world is the AZ850DR from Atturo Tire.
“Atturo’s very first product was a high-performance tire offered in staggered sizes targeting the emerging market of performance SUVs,” Michael Mathis, Founder and President at Atturo Tire, said. “We built sizes that were only available from OE brands, offered at a more affordable level which outperformed their price point. From there, we began to find other segments where there was an opportunity to duplicate that formula.”
Already a player in the high-performance tire game, the company responded to the modern muscle car market’s insatiable need for traction. Its traditional street tires performed well on these cars, but the drag strip is a different animal — especially when there is huge power and torque on tap right off the showroom floor.
“Atturo had begun to receive very positive feedback from Mopar owners using our AZ850 ultra high-performance tire. This created the opportunity to address additional vehicles and the types of tires these cars could utilize,” Mathis explained. “There is a real shortage of options in the street-legal drag radial tire market. The lack of competition keeps prices too high and prevents some consumers from being able to participate in the segment at all. It is a real opportunity for us to live up to our slogan of keeping performance within reach.”
Designed as a complement to the company’s popular ultra-high-performance AZ850 tire, the drag radial version was built to compete with others on the market at an affordable price point. To do so, the company developed a compound that is suited to street and strip environments.
“The AZ850 is an ultra-high-performance tire that is built to maximize traction for handling, braking, and grip. The primary difference in the compounds is the DR is much softer and designed to hold its heat levels longer,” Mathis said. “Heat is normally the enemy of a tire, but in this application is necessary. Proper break-in is important, along with putting some heat into them prior to a first run. Once those are done, the compound will work great for a series of runs.”
In addition to a compound built for balancing traction and treatable concerns like wear, noise, and wet traction, this tire features a unique tread pattern that puts rubber contact patches where they are most needed to plant the kind of power that modified muscle machines are capable of producing.
“It may be counterintuitive, but it is the shoulder part of the tire tread that is most important for grip at launch,” Mathis explained. “We designed the AZ850DR to have the widest shoulder section of any DOT drag radial to maximize performance. Once the launch is done, the wide center tread helps maintain straight-line stability.”
As you might suspect, a compound and tread pattern designed to improve straight-line traction makes for a softer tire that will wear more quickly than a street-only version. That said, these drag radials are designed to deliver on both counts, but any tire’s wear rate ultimately comes down to how it is used
“Reasonable tread wear is all a reflection of the driver’s right foot. We’ve put several thousand street miles on these, including multiple runs at the strip before hitting the wear bars,” Mathis said. “Each vehicle and driver will get different results, but like any tire, if you care for them, they will give you the best mix of performance and durability.”
Atturo launched the AZ850DR for 18-, 19-, and 20-inch wheels in sizes ranging from 315/40R18 to 335/30R20. They will support staggered fitments when paired with the traditional AZ850 ultra-high-performance tires. However, there are more fitments on the way to service a wider swath of performance cars.
“Yes, the AZ850DR range will get several new sizes later this year with more to come,” Mathis added. “Our initial focus was on the modern muscle car to complement the AZ850 line. We are adding sizes for Corvettes along with more traditional DR sizes such as 275/60R15.”
With a wide range of sizes and a traction-first design, the AZ850DR presents another viable option for those who need plenty of drag-strip traction in a streetable package. Moreover, Atturo Tire is committed to ensuring these tires are also reasonably priced, which is a great attribute for a wear item that will need regular replacement.
“In our testing, the AZ850DR was equal to or faster than other major brands of DOT drag radials,” Mathis said. “We’d invite drivers to check them out and be pleasantly surprised at how fast you can go for a lot less money.”
* DOT Compliant but designed with modern muscle cars in mind, Atturo Tire’s AZ850DR drag radial is based on a tread compound engineered to deliver maximum traction on the street and at the drag strip.
* With a tread design highlighted by an extra wider center, dual wide channels, and directional shoulder grips, the AZ850DR is built to maximize straight-line traction. The center tread is designed for straight-line stability and improved on-center feel, particularly at the higher speeds seen on the race track.
* Built with larger shoulder treads than are typical to improve traction when a vehicle launches, this Atturo drag radial also benefits from wide dual channels that reduce noise on the street and at the strip. 
* The Atturo Tire AZ850DR is currently available in a range of 18-, 19-, and 20-inch fitments that support staggered fitments when paired with the company’s ultra-high-performance AZ850 street tire up front. Later in 2024, the company will expand its drag radial offerings with more sizes, including a 15-inch fitment.

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