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Michelin, Sumitomo Announce Massive Distribution Partnership

22 ntwWith shared vision of expanding their tire wholesale distribution footprints across the U.S. and Mexico, with faster deliveries of more products to more customers, Michelin North America Inc. (MNAI) and Sumitomo Corporation of Americas (SCOA) have joined forces in a 50-50 partnership.

Vipal praises Select Tyres for investing in the 'green industry' for tyre retreading in Europe

19 Vipal solarA Chelmsford company has been able to reduce electricity costs by capturing solar energy, among other benefits

Point S opens the first branded locations in India

15 Point S India - Opening in Kochi KeralaLeading Independent retailing group Point S opens its first retail stores in India.

New 2018 Jeep® Wrangler Features Goodyear Wrangler AT Adventure with Kevlar

12 2018-jeep-wrangler-oe-fitmentAKRON Ohio, December 2017 - The 2018 Jeep Wrangler - unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show - will be fitted with two sizes of Goodyear's Wrangler AT Adventure with Kevlar.

Continental becomes official partner of Tour de France

11 continental-tour-de-france• Continental to supply tyres for all official support cars and motorcycles on the Tour from 2018 to 2022

Davanti Tyres appoints new Marketing Manager

7 Emma Mercer Davanti Marketing 10013Davanti Tyres a UK based tyre brand, which now operates across 22 countries since its launch in 2015, appoints Emma Mercer as their new marketing manager.

THE NEW VW POLO CONTINUES ITS SUCCESS – WITH FALKEN TIRES

24 falken 1RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA – Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. (SRI)(CEO: IkujiIkeda) is pleased to announce that FALKEN has been selected as an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for the sixth-generation Volkswagen Polo.

Available October 2017, the brand will supply its premium tire models AZENIS FK453, SINCERA 832AECORUN, ZIEX ZE914A ECORUN and winter tire EUROWINTER HS449 for factory fitting.

“The range and attributes of our tires complement the broad requirements of the VW Polo. From tires for drivers seeking a sporting ride through to tires for drivers whose priorities are energy efficiency and mileage, we will deliver tires to suit every application,” comments Christian Stolting, Key Account Manager OE at Falken Tyre Europe GmbH. “We offer an extensive portfolio of tires that regularly convince independent testing organizations as well as being praised by drivers themselves and we are naturally delighted to hear that this has been underlined by VW. We see the decision as confirmation of our consistent high performance in both development and production.”

Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure wins "Tyre of the Year 2017" award

22 wrangler-at-adventure-488879 1Spanish magazine 'Neumáticos y Mecánica Rápida' magazine has named the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure as the best 4x4/SUV tyre of 2017

November 2017 - The Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure has received the prestigious 'Tyre of the Year' award from renowned Spanish magazine 'Neumáticos y Mecánica Rápida'. With this award, the tyre continues to carry the legacy of the award-winning Wrangler family.

During this 18th edition of the 'Neumáticos y Mecánica Rápida' awards, different tyre manufacturers competed in the following five categories: touring car, industrial vehicle, motorcycle, 4x4/SUV and agricultural. After a fierce competition, the winners were selected by a jury of automotive journalists, workshop managers and also by popular vote.

This award acknowledges Goodyear's pursuit of excellence, commitment to continuous innovation and improvement, and endorses its high standards of quality within the SUV and off-road segment. The choice of the jury confirms the Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure's optimal performance in any situation, both on and off road. Additionally, the tyre is praised for offering excellent grip and traction, low external noise, excellent mileage and a high resistance against punctures and cuts in the sidewall area.

"Receiving an award in the fastest growing segment is an honor", said Mike Rytokoski, Chief Marketing Officer at Goodyear Europe. "Goodyear Wrangler has an exciting heritage in making the best off-road tyres. Winning 'Tyre of the year 2017' illustrates our technical leadership in this important segment.

With this win, the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure sets a new benchmark in the 4x4 / SUV category, after the Goodyear EfficientGrip SUV received the same award in 2012. However, this has not been the only accolade awarded to Goodyear by 'Neumáticos y Mecánica Rápida' magazine.

Last year, the Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 took home an award in the touring car category. Equally impressive, its predecessors, the Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2, won an award in 2012 and the Eagle F1 Asymmetric won an award in 2008. In addition, the EfficientGrip Performance was also chosen by'Neumáticos y Mecánica Rápida' magazine as 'Tyre of the Year 2014' in the touring car category and, back in 2015, the FuelMax was awarded a prize in the industrial vehicle category, proving Goodyear to be a leader in both the touring car and truck segments.

Apollo OE now a supplier to VW & Ford in Europe, more OE approvals in pipeline

15 Vredestein  trac5From being a replacement market focused company in Europe, Apollo Tyres is now expanding supplies to the European Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) in the passenger car tyre segment.  

Apollo brand, Vredestein, has been selected as a fitment on the Volkswagen Polo, SEAT Ibiza and Ford EcoSport. Supplies have already commenced to these OEMs.

Apollo’s new Hungarian facility will play a key role in Apollo Tyre’s OE approvals as well as supplies to the major car OEMs. Commenting on the development, Neeraj Kanwar, Vice Chairman & MD, Apollo Tyres Ltd said, “By entering the supply chains of world-leading carmakers such as Volkswagen, Ford and SEAT, Apollo Tyres embarked on an important journey with European OEMs.

He further indicates more OE approvals in pipeline and stated, “These are the first few, there are several other OE approvals in the pipeline for our passenger car tyres. OE approvals are a testimony of our high quality products and our focus on superior design.” Volkswagen Polo will be offered with Vredestein Snowtrac 5 (winter tyre), Sportrac 5 (summer tyre) or Quatrac 5 (all-season tyre) as standard fitment. The range for the SEAT Ibiza will consist of the Vredestein Sportrac 5 and the Quatrac 5, while the Ford Ecosport will be fitted with the Vredestein Sportrac5 tyres. 

Continental Maintains Successful Path: Strong Growth Continues in Third Quarter

14 sales-ebit 488025 1Continental successfully continued its dynamic growth in the third quarter of 2017. The technology company presented its business figures for the first nine months on Thursday, confirming its annual targets: "We are steadily continuing our successful path. After nine months, we increased our sales by 9 percent to 32.7 billion Euros. Our adjusted EBIT margin is 10.6 percent. We are therefore completely on track and will comfortably achieve our annual targets," said Continental's Executive Board chairman Dr. Elmar Degenhart.

Degenhart expressed his delight over the strong sales growth: "We have put our money on the right horses with our technologies for safe, efficient and intelligent mobility. We closed the third quarter with sales growth before changes in the scope of consolidation and exchange rate effects of 8 percent. This means that we once again grew much faster than our reference markets. For example, the global market for passenger cars and light commercial vehicle production grew by just 2 percent."

Degenhart expects the successful path to continue in the final quarter: "The fourth quarter will be another strong one, both in terms of sales and earnings."

"In the third quarter, we generated an adjusted operating margin of 10.4 percent of sales. This is very decent, as we achieved this despite the negative effects that have already impacted us this year from rising raw material costs," said CFO Wolfgang Schäfer on Continental's earnings development.

With regard to the comparison with the same quarter of the previous year, Schäfer pointed to the low baseline of the previous year, which was reduced by ?450 million by several isolated items.

Schäfer gave more detail on the confirmed sales forecast for fiscal 2017: "We continue to expect sales of more than 44 billion Euros before exchange rate effects. We can now make a good estimate of the influence that various currencies will have on our total sales for the year. Taking these exchange rate effects into account, we expect sales of around 44 billion Euros." The DAX company last raised its sales projection before exchange rate effects for the year as a whole after the first six months of the fiscal year.

The company's growth momentum is demonstrated in particular by the steady growth of incoming orders in the Automotive Group: "Compared to the same period of the previous year, the order intake after nine months has grown by 20 percent to total more than 30 billion Euros," explained Schäfer.

In the third quarter, products from the fields of electronics, software and sensor technology made a particular contribution to the Automotive Group's growth. "Their share is growing continuously. They accounted for about 50 percent of the Automotive Group's sales in 2012 - now the figure is at above 60 percent and rising," said Schäfer.

"The Rubber Group increased its sales further in the third quarter despite a weak market environment. That is remarkable. The price increases for tires and industrial products from the first half of the year have generated their positive effect. At the same time, the earnings in the third quarter were burdened by more than 100 million Euros from increased cost of raw materials," Schäfer explained. Continental continues to estimate the negative effect of rising raw material prices for the Rubber Group in fiscal 2017 at 450 million Euros. The recent development of raw material prices will not take effect until fiscal 2018.

"The winter tire business is off to a good start," reported Schäfer. He is also pleased with the latest winter tire, the WinterContact TS 860. It once again earned outstanding scores in tests by all major automobile clubs in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

The ContiTech division has also grown strongly again. Schäfer is content with the integration and performance of the surface specialist Hornschuch, which the company acquired in March 2017: "Hornschuch is meeting all of our expectations completely."

In the first three quarters of 2017, Continental achieved free cash flow of 472 million Euros and was thus 712 million Euros short of the previous year's figure. "We reconfirm our forecast of achieving free cash flow of around 2 billion Euros before acquisitions at the end of the year despite the high capital expenditure required for securing our strong growth. In the fourth quarter in particular, we expect a sharp decline in working capital, which after nine months expanded by 660 million Euros year-on-year due to our excellent growth," Schäfer explained, adding that the growth in working capital was the main reason for the decline in free cash flow after nine months.

With regard to net indebtedness, he said: "We expect net indebtedness at the end of the year to be on a par with the previous year." The Continental Corporation's net indebtedness amounted to 3.3 billion Euros after nine months of 2017. It increased by 500 million Euros compared to the 2.8 billion Euros at the end of 2016. Reasons for this include the distribution of the dividend of 850 million Euros for fiscal 2016 in May 2017.

In the first nine months of 2017, capital expenditure on property, plant and equipment and software increased by 12 percent year-on-year to 1.8 billion Euros. As a result, the capital expenditure ratio amounted to 5.5 percent after 5.3 percent in the comparative period of the previous year.

Research and development expenses increased by just under 9 percent year-on-year to nearly 2.4 billion Euros after nine month of 2017. In relation to consolidated sales, the ratio of research and development expenses came to 7.2 percent, as in the same period of the previous year.

The gearing ratio fell to 21 percent at the end of September 2017 (same date in the previous year: 24 percent). The equity ratio amounted to 42 percent compared with 39 percent in the previous year.

As at September 30, 2017, Continental had a liquidity buffer of just under 5.2 billion Euros, comprising more than 1.5 billion Euros in cash and cash equivalents and more than 3.6 billion Euros in committed, unutilized credit lines.

As at the end of the third quarter of 2017, the corporation had more than 233,000 employees, over 13,000 more than at the end of 2016. In the Automotive Group, the number of employees rose primarily in production and in research and development. Overall, there was an increase of more than 7,400 employees here. In the Rubber Group, further expansion of production capacity and sales channels, as well as the acquisition of the Hornschuch Group, led to an increase of more than 5,700 employees. Compared with the reporting date for the previous year, the total number of employees in the corporation was up by almost 14,700.

In the first nine months of this year, the Automotive Group achieved sales of 19.8 billion Euros. The adjusted EBIT margin was 8.2 percent (same period of the previous year: sales of 18.1 billion Euros, adjusted EBIT margin of 5.6 percent).

After the first three quarters of 2017, the Rubber Group generated total sales of 13.0 billion Euros. The adjusted EBIT margin was 15.1 percent (same period of the previous year: sales of 11.9 billion Euros, adjusted EBIT margin of 17.6 percent).

Apollo Tyres and Rubber Research Institute of India gets patent for special grade ENR

13 Apollo-patent 1This special grade ENR will replace the synthetic and expensive S-SBR

The continuous efforts of Team Apollo Tyres and the Rubber Research Institute of India (RRI) resulted in the invention of a special grade of Epoxide Natural Rubber (ENR), a rubber compound for tyres, which was patented by Govt of India vide patent no. 287630.

The R&D Team at Apollo Tyres, led by Dr Arup Kr Chandra, along with RRI, has developed this special grade of Epoxide Natural Rubber. This ENR is not only capable of substituting the expensive Solution- polymerised Styrene Butadiene Rubber (S-SBR), widely used for high performance car tyres, including winter tyres, it also provides a sustainable solution to the company’s future high performance tyres.

Lauding the efforts of Dr Chandra, and the team involved in this innovation, Daniele Lorenzetti, Chief Technology Officer, Apollo Tyres Ltd said, “As a company, Apollo Tyres has always been proactive in its approach towards technology, sustainability and other environmental issues. This innovation is a result of our commitment to replace synthetic materials with green and more environment friendly naturally occurring materials. I would like to congratulate the entire team involved in this, including the scientists from Rubber Research Institute of India, for this invention.”

The increased focus on R&D, which is one of the two pillars of growth for Apollo Tyres, along with the need to develop environment friendly raw materials, led to the company collaborating with Rubber Research Institute of India, to develop such a special grade material. As of now, Indian tyre manufacturers rely on the imported S-SBR, which is not only expensive, but also not environment friendly, for their high performance car tyres.

Smithers Rapra anticipates robust growth in global wheel market of 8.7% per year to 2022

10 future-of-global 1The wheel industry continues to evolve and has for many years; the main story had been the substitution of aluminium for steel in many applications.

This continues to be the case, but in recent years lighter materials have been gaining, though limited to certain niches on account of cost and other factors. Smithers Rapra’s latest report, The Future of Passenger, Commercial and Speciality Vehicle Wheels to 2022  [https://www.smithersrapra.com/market-reports/tire-industry-market-reports/speciality-vehicle-wheels-to-2022] estimated the global wheel market at $81.7 billion in 2017, up from $64 billion in 2012 and anticipates a robust growth of 8.7% per year through to 2022, when the market will approach $124 billion.

One of these new materials, carbon fibre, has been growing rapidly in value terms, and will continue to do so. Magnesium, though not new, will also find increased favour in some niches, although also limited by cost. Even in currency terms, aluminium will continue to dominate, remaining well above 60% of the market. Steel’s decline will continue, and it is expected to be overtaken by carbon fibre, which is seen growing at nearly 30% per year.                                  

The highly diverse global wheel industry as defined in this report is very broad and touches on almost every area of economic activity where ground transportation of people and goods is a factor. The market is mainly accounted for by the light vehicle segment, which consists of cars and light trucks mainly for passenger but also some commercial use. Throughout the historical and forecast period, its share is around 72%.

From the regional perspective, the distribution of the global market for wheels resembles trends that of vehicle production (and also OE tire demand) to some extent. Asia-Pacific is by far the dominant market; however, value growth in all regions through 2022 is expected to accelerate from the 2012–17 pace. This is supported by generally growing or recovering regional economies, and steady increases in raw material input prices (primarily steel and aluminium).

Compared to the tire market, wheels has a much more fragmented and balanced industry structure. Manufacturers are somewhat segmented according to materials used and enduse segment served. A few larger companies are broadly active, but many specialise in one or two materials or end uses. The fast-emerging carbon fibre segment is an exception, and is so different that the companies are for now entirely separate and specialised. The companies producing passenger, commercial and speciality wheels are very diverse in terms of the mix of end uses, materials and regions served. Most companies are small, privately owned, and specialised, but several are large public companies operating in two or more end uses, and typically all regions. Even many of the smaller companies are global in reach. But very few are active across all the wheel types. Some of these have been growing by acquisition, a trend which should continue. Already, Superior Industries has acquired Uniwheels (March 2017). Earlier, Maxion acquired Hayes Lemmerz (2012) and Fumagalli (2009).

The Future of Passenger, Commercial and Speciality Vehicle Wheels to 2022’ [https://www.smithersrapra.com/market-reports/tire-industry-market-reports/speciality-vehicle-wheels-to-2022] takes a global view, in light of the diverse and interconnected supply chains that characterise the vehicle and wheel industries in every region. Perspectives from all lifecycle participants are taken into account, from raw material suppliers, to OEs, manufacturers, distributors and marketers, motorists and fleet managers, and government.

A new generation of Traxion tyres from Vredestein

9 Traxion-Optimall 1Netherlands based Vredestein has announced the launch of the 'next generation' of their VF (Very High Flexion) range for the upper tractor segment with the all new Traxion Optimall tyre following years of extensive research into the particular needs and benefits of tractor manufacturers and users.

The Traxion Optimall will be officially introduced at the Agritechnica trade show in Germany later this month and becomes the only one of Vredestein's VF tyres that allows a lower inflation pressure in the field and also ensures up to 15 per cent larger footprint.

A new age of personalisation from Trelleborg

7 YourTire 09At the forthcoming Agritechnica Show in Europe, Swedish based Trelleborg will be launching their new Online service – YourTire which enables customers to personalise their Trelleborg radial tractor tyres.

Using the YourTire online configurator tool customers can add their trading name or logo to their new tyres for complete 'originality'. On the Trelleborg stand at the show High Power agricultural tyres will be on display complete with sample names.

For the first time ever, this year will see half of all new cars rolling off the production line equipped with some form of connectivity solution, which means that by 2020, around 250 million connected cars will be on our roads all around the world. "Whe

3 STARCO logoEuropean based Starco – now part of the Kenda Group will be introducing two new tyre and wheel solutions at the Agritechnica Show in November.

The Starco HT Pro is a low profile 10 inch tubeless complete wheel solution that is seen as a reinvention of the company's Haytedder wheel and incorporates an innovative tyre pattern for better performance, enhanced stability, easier maintenance and improved reliability in the field.

Whilst the Starco HS Flotation for agricultural equipment is a premium 17 inch tyre solution for farm implements that can work hard in the field and move fast on the road.

Continental pioneers holistic vehicle connectivity for smart mobility

2 continental pp cloudterminal 487530 1For the first time ever, this year will see half of all new cars rolling off the production line equipped with some form of connectivity solution, which means that by 2020, around 250 million connected cars will be on our roads all around the world.

"Where vehicle connectivity was once simply an added feature, it is now becoming a key technology for intelligent mobility of the future. This is why we are focusing on holistic connectivity for a seamless online connection, and developing the entire vehicle into an open system," says Helmut Matschi, member of the Executive Board at Continental and head of the Interior Division.

"Holistic connectivity concerns all aspects of a connected vehicle - from the in-vehicle electronics architecture, through the seamless connection, to the services and the interaction between driver and vehicle. Today we are developing the building blocks for all areas of holistic connectivity. In doing so, we are shaping future mobility."

Updates: wireless, seamless and for the entire vehicle

"Wireless software updates for the entire vehicle electronics constitute a central building block for holistic connectivity," says Matschi. But for Continental, this is not simply about demonstrating how this capability can be implemented in vehicles securely and reliably.

Continental has teamed up with Carnegie Technologies for a solution that enables the seamless and disruption-free transition between different wireless networks (mobile telephony, Wi-Fi or satellite systems). To send data packages containing as much data as possible from the cloud to the vehicle and back, the solution can also combine data lines, for example, from the passengers' mobile devices as a means of pooling transmission capacities.

In a collaboration with Inmarsat, Continental is also using satellite communication - in addition to mobile telephony and Wi-Fi - to provide vehicle manufacturers and drivers worldwide with the best-possible network connection at all times.

Infotainment of the future: directly from the cloud

Holistic connectivity will also make in-vehicle infotainment smarter and more flexible. With the cloud terminal, applications that were once directly integrated in the head unit will now be moved to the cloud.

This ensures that the system is always up-to-date and that new functions can be added at any time, allowing vehicle manufacturers to simply roll out the applications across different models and vehicle classes.

The twist is that Continental has created a development framework within the cloud that uses standard development tools and therefore does not require developers to have any specialised automotive software expertise.

As such, Continental is opening up the connected car to a broad developer community, creating the basis for a number of exciting functions. The cloud terminal also acts as the driver's digital assistant, analysing the driver's habits and providing appropriate personalized functions.

NEW BF GOODRICH TYRE RELEASE TO COINCIDE WITH DAKAR'S 40TH ANNIVERSARY

4 bfgoodrich competitionTo celebrate the Dakar's 40th anniversary edition BF Goodrich has allegedly pushed out the boundaries once again to provide all its partners with a competition tyre that is capable of coping with all the potentially possible conditions, irrespective of the type of (two and four-wheel drive) and the driving style.

BFGoodrich tyres arrive in Europe...at last!

1 BFG Truck PhotoSo far BFGoodrich commercial vehicle tyres are currently available in all markets around the world (except for Europe) with sales of over 1.6 million units a year.

Goodyear and NASCAR Extend Historic Relationship

27 nascar-sponsorshipGY• Goodyear Remains Exclusive Tyre Supplier Across All Three National Series

• Renewed Multi-Year Agreement Extends Six Decades of Partnership

Hankook Tire wins accolades at IDEA 2017

30 M-HankookConceptTires-3Hankook Tire has been awarded "Bronze" and "Finalist" for its innovative, futuristic concept tyres at the International Design Excellence Awards 2017.

Team De Rooy wins Rallye OiLibya on Goodyear Truck Tyres

27 123 oilybia-rally podiumTeam De Rooy takes all truck podium places on Goodyear Offroad ORD tyres

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