Forgive the cheesiness, but this new product truly reinvents the wheel.
The tire’s design is quite elegant, consisting of a rubber strip strapped to a 29-inch carbon fiber hoop and held under tension. this can be adjusted to increase or decrease the tire’s firmness and the size of the contact patch. It’s the equivalent of adjusting air pressure in a conventional tire.
The strip itself is made from two layers of rubber, with the inner layer attached to the tension-adjusting rods. The space between is filled with elastic cushions, which give the tire flexibility.
Airless tires have been tested on cars, and they’re even an option on the Polaris Sportsman WV850 H.O. ATV, but this appears to be the first time they’ve been tried on a bicycle. The Energy Return Wheel is still undergoing testing, so it’s unclear whether it will end up on the street anytime soon.