ETRMA joins auto associations in call to ‘save jobs while reducing emissions’
European automotive business organisations and trade unions have called on the European Commission to set out a “bold industrial recovery plan” following the Covid-19 pandemic. IndustriAll Europe, Ceemet, ACEA, CLEPA, CECRA, and ETRMA want a plan to stimulate sales and revive production, while supporting the industry’s “journey towards a carbon-neutral future, based on the Green Deal and Europe’s climate objectives.” The associations want to address fears that the recession will dwarf the effects of the 2008 financial crisis, in which it says 440,000 auto sector jobs were lost.
While much of the tyre industry has helped keep Britain rolling during the coronavirus lockdown, commercial vehicle technicians have played a particularly key role since they have serviced the fleets that have kept the blue lights flashing, the food deliveries moving and much more. In order to gain an inside perspective, Tyres & Accessories spoke with Bridgestone North Region Commercial Business Unit Director Greg Ward who, prior to his promotion into this role in October 2019, served as the company’s commercial sales director, UK and Ireland, for 17 years.
A 2021 edition of the Geneva International Motor Show (GIMS) “very uncertain” and therefore the next edition is not likely to take place until 2022. The news emerged on 26 May after the Foundation behind GIMS declined financial support from the Canton of Geneva because the rescue package stipulated that the even should plan for a 2021 event.
Supercar manufacturer and historic Formula 1 competitor McLaren is expected to cut 1200 jobs, according to UK news reports. The redundancies, which amount to more than a quarter of its 4,000-strong workforce, represent the UK company’s response to the damage inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic on the car sector. Staff reductions are expected to be spread across its road car, F1 and Applied Technologies divisions.
Pirelli: likely increase in car usage as motorists continue distancing
With coronavirus lockdowns lifting around the world, heightened vigilance in social interactions is likely to continue for some time. One effect of this could be an increased use of private cars, as commuters eschew public transport options to limit their contact with other people. The economic reality of this suggests that those in the financial position to drive are even more likely to do so. And in turn these motorists are more likely to drive cars that require the fitment of larger tyres. In its preparation for the launch of the new Cinturato P7 over the last month, Pirelli commissioned a survey of drivers using 18-inch and above tyre sizes. This highlighted the tendency for increased car use in future – especially while social distancing measures are in place. In China, 68 per cent of respondents said they would use their cars more, in Italy the figure was 31 per cent, and in Germany 20 per cent.
Pirelli launches Cinturato P7 performance tyre with ‘intelligent compound’
Pirelli has launched a new high performance tyre for premium cars in European and Asian markets, the next generation Cinturato P7. The Cinturato product line has one of the longest histories in the car tyre segment. The brand, with which Pirelli claims to have “invented the concept of the sporting tyre for the road”, celebrates its 70th anniversary this year. While the P Zero line is Pirelli’s primary focus for the highest performance vehicles, the Formula 1 tyre supplier includes Cinturato branding via the series’s wet weather tyres with good reason. Such is Pirelli’s focus on the ultra-high performance sector, that the Cinturato is positioned as another tyre line for top premium segment cars. Preparations for the launch of the new P7 focused on drivers using 18” and above sizes, while Pirelli’s original equipment focus has also yielded 70-plus homologations for the tyre.
Toni Silfverberg joings Nokian Tyres management team
Toni Silfverberg has been appointed to lead Nokian Tyres’ new Marketing & Sales Excellence team starting 1 June 2020. Silfverberg will be a member of Nokian Tyres management team and report to Jukka Kasi, SVP products and marketing. Toni Silfverberg moves to the position from Nokian Heavy Tyres, where he has been leading sales and marketing globally. Previously Silfverberg has worked in international companies like H+H International A/S and Inion Oy, where he had leading roles in sales and marketing, finance and ICT.
For the first time in nearly a decade, the Goodyear Blimp will take flight over Europe. The Goodyear Blimp operating in Europe will be a Goodyear-branded, Zeppelin NT airship, operated by Deutsche Zeppelin-Reederei GmbH of Friedrichshafen, Germany. This marks the latest chapter in a nearly 100-year relationship between Goodyear and Zeppelin.
BKT launches Liftmax LM 63, adds sizes to its range
Agricultural and industrial tyre specialists manufacturer BKT launched the new Liftmax LM 63 on 14 May 2020. The tyremaker describes its later offering as “a perfect mix of resistance, stability, and comfort.” Meanwhile, BKT will soon release a range of new sizes for its Liftmax LM 81 and Container King tyres.
Kwik Fit warns of ‘1.1 million unroadworthy vehicles’
MOT exemption means many cars will not be checked for up to six months and 49 per cent of drivers receiving an MOT extension will go to the end of the period without getting car tested, according to Kwik Fit’s analysis. However, the leading fast-fit chain also reports that the majority of drivers think the MOT extension should be ended now.
April’s US trailer demand down 99 compared with 2019
Analysis of commercial vehicle trailer demand in the USA conducted by ACT Research has found that April 2020 trailer orders were down 97 per cent compared with March 2020 and down 99 per cent compared with April 2019.
Business welcomes government decision to reopen car dealerships
The government’s decision to include car showrooms in its first wave of of retail reopenings on 1 June has been welcomed by dealers. Sue Robinson, director of the National Franchised Dealers Association stated: “Following our lobbying efforts where we highlighted it was vital to include dealerships in the first wave of non-essential retail reopening, it is positive that the Prime Minister has confirmed the Government intends to reopen car showrooms from 1 June.
Pirelli pitching its tyres as ‘the perfect fit for fleets’
Bearing in mind that Pirelli’s high-performance leading product portfolio is based on an OE-homologation heavy “perfect fit” strategy, it is no surprise to learn that the Italian-based manufacturer is pitching it tyres as “the perfect fit for fleets” as well.