FEATURES: In Gear: Seeing Red

September 26, 2005
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Have you ever been doing a sweet burnout and had the suspicion that something was missing? We have, and we discovered the answer: color. Kumho now has addressed this problem with the Ecsta MX-C, which has an added chemical compound that produces red smoke during high-temperature, um, experiments. (They've also produced a blue-smoke version, and yellow is on the way.) The idea came about as a way for drift team Enjuku Racing, sponsored by Kumho, to stand out during Formula D competitions.
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The tires, which use the excellent Ecsta MX ultra-high-performance rubber as a starting point, must be offered to the public in order to be homologated for drift competition. As of this writing, there's only a single tire, just one, available for sale anywhere (255/40YR-17 at Tire Rack), but the company hints that a real production run is coming. The price is $1995, versus $144 for a run-of-the-mill Ecsta MX. We fitted two of the tires to a 2005 Pontiac GTO and did a few burnouts and donuts, with the result pictured here. We think this was the best tire test we've ever done. (Click here to see a video of the ECSTA MX-C in action.)

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