Trailer Trial Prompts Alcaline to Favour Michelin
Following a year-long trial using Michelin’s X One MaxiTrailer tyres, pan-European haulage company Alcaline has decided to adopt an all-Michelin policy for the fleet and will specify the tyre as original equipment on all new trailers it purchases. The first units to be so equipped and delivered to Alcaline are the 15 Schmitz Cargobull tri-axle trailers that will enter service before the end of 2009.
The trial directly compared a set of Michelin tyres fitted to a Cargobull tri-axle trailer with the Dunlop tyres fitted to numerous other trailers in the Alcaline fleet. Michelin reports its tyres have so far covered 176,569 kilometres and have 9 mm of tread remaining. Used primarily on trunking routes between Kent and Italy, the tyres are projected to cover a further 78,000 km before requiring regrooving in-line with Michelin’s Four Lives tyre policy.
“We are a 24-hour business operating across Europe, so tyre-related breakdowns can have a massive impact on our service and also affect our costs,” noted Alcaline fleet engineer Mick Richards. “We made the decision to trial the Michelin X One MaxiTrailer tyres as we were experiencing damage, casing failures and heavy wear on other makes of tyres fitted to brand new trailers as original equipment.
“We approached Michelin to see if they had a solution and arranged for a set of X One MaxiTrailer tyres to be fitted to a new curtainsider,” Richards continued. “Over the course of the 12-month trial these tyres were considered to be the best we’ve ever bought. Damage has been eliminated thanks to the robust sidewalls and we are recording exceptional mileage performance.”
Designed by Michelin to deliver up to 50 per cent more mileage than Michelin’s equivalent 385/65 R 22.5 XTE2 tyre, each 455/45 R 22.5 X One MaxiTrailer tyre benefits from InfiniCoil architecture, one of the key innovations of Michelin Durable Technologies. This technology consists of a 400 metre steel cord wrapped continuously around the crown of the tyre, and Michelin explains that this arrangement offers unrivalled robustness, greater longevity and even wear. Compared to a 385/65 R 22.5, the tread band is also 120 millimetres wider and has 35 per cent more usable rubber in the tread, which together with InfiniCoil is said to be responsible for increasing each tyre’s mileage potential by up to 50 per cent.
“The performance we have seen from the X One MaxiTrailer tyres has been staggering, but the benefits don’t just stop there,” adds Richards. “The low rolling resistance associated with Michelin tyres improved fuel efficiencies for our fleet, whilst the improved shock absorption is helping to reduce trailer maintenance times. Overall, the trial has been such a success that we have adopted an all-Michelin policy for the fleet and are actively specifying X One MaxiTrailer tyres as original equipment on all new trailer purchases.”
The Michelin X One MaxiTrailer tyre is primarily available for fitment as original equipment on new trailers manufactured across Europe, and its low profile design typically allows for a five to nine cubic metre increase in load volume when the tyre is fitted to most conventional or mega volume trailers. Michelin further claims the X One MaxiTrailer offers an increased, consistent tyre footprint that delivers greater vehicle stability.