Continental has won a new tyre supply deal for BMW’s latest 5 Series. The tyre manufacturer will supply the SportContact 7 for sporty driving, the energy efficient EcoContact 6 Q summer tyre, and the WinterContact TS 860 S winter tyre after its products were approved for the entire series, including the all-electric i5.
The -17.1 per cent decline in battery electric vehicle registrations in November may have been a result of supply chain issues, but analysts argued that the setback on the electrification of the UK car parc also underlines the need to continue addressing issues affecting consumer demand. Jamie Hamilton, automotive partner and head of electric vehicles at Deloitte, said: “In a month where we’ve seen significant announcements in the UK supporting electric vehicle (EV) production, the decline in sales of battery electric vehicles in November is a reminder that we also need to think about demand and the underlying charging infrastructure that’s required for consumer adoption.”
The UK new car market grew by 9.5 per cent in November to reach 156,525 units, according to figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). In the market’s best November for four years, registrations almost returned to pre-pandemic levels, down just 96 units (-0.1 per cent) on 2019.
Apollo Tyres is celebrating the achievement of its latest Vredestien Quatrac all-season tyre, after the product secured second place in the 2023 Auto Express All Season Tyre Test. Developed for mid-sized family cars and SUVs, the Quatrac was given a ’Recommended’ rating alongside the winning Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-3, having proved its all-round performance in all conditions – it was top in braking on snow and in the wet, while it only dropped one place in the dry braking test, emphasising its safety credentials. Overall, it was just 0.1 per cent behind the winner. The Quatrac could also be called a value champion, acquired for a price around 20 per cent cheaper than the winning tyre.
On 20 November, Michelin’s Shanghai factory held a groundbreaking ceremony for its expansion project. Michelin plans to increase the production capacity of high-performance, high-value radial passenger tyres at the Shanghai plant while also achieving efficient, clean and flexible production.
Firestone has launched the new Roadhawk 2 Enliten summer touring tyre. The Bridgestone brand says the new model offers “best-in-class wet grip” as well as longer mileage and a greater than 10 per cent reduction in rolling resistance, optimising fuel or energy consumption, based on internal testing on size 225/55 R17 101W. The integration of Bridgestone’s Enliten technology, which reduces material consumption and tyre weight, as well as using the new NanoPro-Tech high-silica compound for greater wear resistance, ensures the Roadhawk 2 Enliten is an “EV-ready tyre”: a tyre suitable for fitment on vehicles using and electric or conventional combustion engine powertrain. The new tyre will be available from January 2024 in 17-21” sizes to cover 90 per cent of the market. After the addition of 16” sizes in 2025, the range will comprise 112 size variations. The Firestone Roadhawk 2 Enliten is the successor to the Roadhawk summer touring tyre.
Apollo Tyres will launch Vredestein’s new Ultrac Pro ultra-high performance summer car tyre in spring 2024. The manufacturer said the tyre will target both “advanced handling capabilities and superior driving comfort” at what it calls an “accessible price”. The development tyre is currently in its final phase of real-world testing. The manufacturer will bring the tyre to market in a wide range of 18-24” sizes, compatible with a broad spectrum of sportscars, supercars and high-performance saloons, hatchbacks and SUVs. The Ultrac Pro is Vredestein’s first all-new UHP summer tyre since the Ultrac Vorti in 2012.
October’s new car market grew by 14.3 per cent to reach 153,529 registrations, 7.2 per cent above pre-pandemic levels and marking the best performance for the month since 2018, according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The 15th month of consecutive growth was driven almost entirely by large fleet registrations, which grew 28.8 per cent to reach 87,479 units. Private demand was stable at 62,915 vehicles, a 0.3 per cent increase, while the much smaller business sector saw registrations fall -15.2 per cent to 3,135 units. With the sustained increase in new car registrations, overall vehicle uptake is now up 19.6 per cent in the first 10 months, with the market currently enjoying its best year since 2019.
Nexen Tire is “restructuring” the prices of its summer and all-season tyres. The new price list will be valid for the European market, including the United Kingdom and Turkey. The “necessary structural price adjustment” is effective from 1 October 2023 and applies to all orders placed from that date.
Recently, Linglong revealed the latest situation of its Serbian factory. It is reported that for the business needs of the Serbian company, Linglong recently added a credit guarantee of approximately 18 million euros to the subsidiary. As of 30 September 2023, the total assets of the Serbian factory were about 7.94 billion yuan (about £893 million; €1.026 billion).
Giti Tire, the manufacturer of the GT Radial and Runway tyre brands has signed another exclusive distribution agreement with UK wholesaler Micheldever Tyre Services (MTS). The new four-year deal, which covers passenger car, SUV, 4×4 and light truck tyre segments in the UK and Republic of Ireland replacement markets, will run until 2026. The partnership commenced in 2010, meaning the latest EDA will take the relationship between the companies to 16 years. MTS has agreed to continue the expansion of the GT Radial Performance Centres (GTPCs) dealer programme, while jointly promoting Runway across its larger independent network. The distributor will also remain closely involved in product development.
Tyre retailer BA Bush & Son has expanded into a new county, opening a new commercial branch on the Bridge Trading Estate in Ipswich, Suffolk. As a result, the expanding company now has sites in Lincolnshire, Yorkshire (North, South and East Riding/ Humberside), County Durham, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. The company also has sites in Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire through its share of GT Wholesale.
Davanti Tyres has launched its first semi-slick track tyre, the Protoura Race. The tyre, designed to offer the power and handling to achieve podium results, was tested at Applus IDIADA and Calafat Circuit in Spain, as well as at the UK’s Formula One host circuit, Silverstone. Its features include a directional tread pattern for superior wet control, enhanced carcass strength for more driver feedback and control under high cornering forces experienced on race tracks; a new compound to provide the grip required for faster acceleration and harder braking; and a road-legal, semi-slick tread design to allow amateur racers to drive to and from the track. Davanti adds that the tyre will be available in sizes between 13” and 18”.
Sgcarmart, purportedly Singapore’s car sales platform, has a new online marketplace, Sgcarmart e-Shop. Available as a new feature on the platform today, automotive suppliers and distributors can now list, price and sell their inventory of car tyres to consumers online.