I would assume that in production the sides would be encased.
But...If a car manufacturer designs a car around these,does that mean that you are stuck with this type of tyre.Also,one would assume that the equipment to fit them will also be different,so are you tied to a limited number of outlets (eg;Audi,Mercedes,BMW etc dealers) only?
The idea for these was dropped a couple of years ago, they were to noisy, the ride was poor and you'd need to match specific ones to the cars weight, the production versions would have had sidewalls, the open ones were for the press.
you dont need special equipment to fit them as the tyre is part of the wheel, you replace the whole lot when its worn out.
I guess with how things are at the moment. Alot of people struggling financially, it does seem to pump up the mood somewhat. You never know, things might take a sudden turn and it may end up being a goodyear. So no need for anyone to feel deflated or out of balance.
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