Retread supplier Kraiburg Austria navigated choppy 2022 waters successfully to achieve 92 million euro in sales, a figure the company called “satisfactory” and a demonstration of its crisis resistance according to managing director Stefan Mayrhofer. The company registered growth in high-performance compounds for hot cured retreads alongside stable mould cure figures, while developing its business in key Central and Eastern European markets. New Kraiburg products in 2022 included the local public transport focussed K708, the Nordic winter K727 tread, and the 3PMSF-certified K738, which was operational on construction sites and public roads from September. Kraiburg Austria also bolstered its sustainability credentials via its membership of the Global Platform for Sustainable Rubber.
Apollo Tyres wants to build its European market share alongside the development of the commercial vehicle tyre production line at its advanced Hungarian plant. Hosting Tyres & Accessories in the final quarter of 2022, the growing manufacturer detailed its strategic five-year plan to build its presence in Europe’s truck and bus, radial (TBR) tyre market alongside the launch of its EnduMile LHT, a long haul trailer tyre targeting the continent, its first to feature A-grade fuel efficiency on the European tyre label. Apollo is taking measures to double its TBR tyre production output from the Gyöngyöshalász facility, with the target of covering up to 90 per cent of the TBR segment’s total size and specification requirements by 2025.
One year on from its entrance into light vehicle tyre markets, Portugal’s Grupo Alves Bandeira has extended its MatraX tyre range to commercial vehicle segments. The initial MatraX TBR range incorporates 14 patterns and 30 sizes produced at “a technological advanced international tyre building facility.” The new patterns offer a comprehensive range of fitments across axles and applications.
Alongside Bridgestone’s efficient tyre range, the company’s integrated tyre and vehicle maintenance solution Fleetcare represents a complete package for commercial vehicle fleets. The integrated tyre and fleet management programme is an evolution of Bridgestone’s Total Tyre Care, combining Bridgestone’s tyre range and tyre management solutions with fleet management solutions from telematics division Webfleet.
Prometeon has expanded its Pirelli Serie 02 line of commercial vehicle tyres with the addition of a new trailer tyre designed for use on articulated trailers and suited to vehicles carrying particularly large loads and volumes over long haul routes. The Pirelli H02 Pro Trailer is available now in Europe and Turkey in sizes 435/50R19.5 and 445/45R19.5. The specialist commercial tyre manufacturer says the tyre offers a blend of excellent fuel economy and optimised operating costs, helping it to excel on long routes and motorway journeys. The tyre supersedes the previous ST:01 Neverending Super Single, offering all-round improvements, especially in rugged performance, safety, and load capacity.
A four-month academic study at Coventry University, supported by Bridgestone, has demonstrated the scale of the business case for fitting tyres that assist a commercial vehicle’s efficiency. With increasing economic demands being placed on its commercial fleet partners, Bridgestone contacted the Warwickshire university with an invitation to investigate the benefits associated with its premium Duravis and Ecopia tyre ranges. Business Analytics masters graduate Sreyas Sunil Kunnappally embarked on a painstaking project, arriving at this conclusion. His final report is now being revealed for the first time.
The European importer of Indian manufactured xlite and xbrite aluminium forged commercial vehicle wheels, The Truck Hub Group has been placed into creditors’ voluntary liquidation following unsuccessful attempts to sell the business at the end of 2022. The company traded as The Wheel Hub, based in Sharston in south Manchester, having changed its name from MWheels in early 2021. This was one of a number of transformational changes for the company in recent years, with the establishment of a European operation, Wheel Hub GmbH in the Cologne region of Germany, which is “unaffected” by the liquidation proceedings. Further details of the company’s stock liquidation sale can be found here.
Goodyear has unveiled a new partnership with Exclusive Wheel and Tyre Distributors in new go-to-market strategy for Goodyear’s South African truck tyre business. Goodyear South Africa managing director, Richard Fourie says the partnership “forms part of our drive to enhance service and efficiency to customers and underlines our commitment to the sustainable growth of the industry.”
Together with Allianz Partners, Bridgestone EMIA is rolling out a commercial vehicle tyre insurance programme as the first product in a partnership that will co-create new offers and services around each firm’s key areas of expertise. The programme is fully launched in Italy and being piloted in France, Germany, and the Benelux. The tyre insurance programme covers the replacement of flat tyres caused by sharp objects or curb side collisions, which are typically not protected in the case of damage.
A positive first half of 2022 gave way to an increasingly bleak picture for replacement tyre sales according to overall figures published today by European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers’ Association (ETRMA) members. Overall this meant replacement consumer tyre sales were 2 per cent down on 2021. Commercial replacement tyre sales remained largely flat, except for the agricultural tyre market, which was down more than a fifth (-22 per cent), having been in contraction all year. Quarter four saw double-digit percentage falls versus the fourth quarter of 2021 as the effects of war in Ukraine, including spiralling energy prices and a continental cost of living crisis, bit. The European replacement tyre segment’s first half of the year had been relatively buoyant, with double-digit growth in replacement truck and bus tyres the highlight.
Giti Tire has unveiled its first A-grade rolling resistance HGV tyres for the Chinese market with a new original equipment deal for the Mercedes-Benz Actros. The Giti GAR206 and Giti GDR207, in size 315/70R22.5, have been fitted at Daimler’s Beijing automobile plant since 23 September with the first deliveries reaching customers in November.
The British Truck Racing Championship put Giti Tire on centre-stage as a special feature on the premier British motoring show Top Gear became one of the company’s 2022 highlights. The manufacturer is the Official Partner and Exclusive Tyre Supplier to the BTRC, while Team Oliver, of which it is a sponsor, provided competitive success, finishing third overall. Giti’s involvement with the series went up a notch in 2022; all competition trucks were fitted with Giti Race-Tuned v1 global competition truck tyres in size 315/70R22.5 for the first time. Giti said that feedback from the teams had been “overwhelmingly positive”.
A special report on a delicate situation shows why the major supplier to the European commercial vehicle tyre market made new supply agreements with contracted OEM partners, and how the period of flux could work in its favour as tender processes commence
Hankook Tire Europe’s intensive expansion of its original equipment truck tyres business over the last half-decade hit significant headwinds at the end of 2021. As a result, the manufacturer made the decision to largely discontinue corresponding deliveries at the start of 2022. Speaking to Tyres & Accessories’ sister magazine in Germany, Neue Reifenzeitung (NRZ), representatives from Hankook’s European headquarters in Neu-Isenburg were clear that the company had not withdrawn from original equipment, but that there has been an interruption, which will be followed by a “restart” in the next two years. This raises the question of how this strategic decision will be received in a shrinking market, while many in the aftermarket are wondering why such a drastic move was necessary in the first place.
Apollo Tyres will enter the European long-haul trailer market with its new commercial vehicle tyre, the EnduMile LHT. The first Apollo truck tyre to achieve an A-grade rating for fuel efficiency on the European tyre label, Apollo says the tyre will be the most durable and lowest rolling resistance truck-sector tyre it has ever produced. The tyre was launched at the manufacturer’s advanced production facility in Gyöngyöshalász, Hungary, where it is to be manufactured. The EnduMile LHT will be available to customers across Europe from early 2023.
With a fresh commercial tyre range now available and the UK launch of its new fleet service offer just months away, there is plenty happening at Prometeon Tyre Group (PTG). To find out more we caught up with Ali Yilmaz, who in July was named commercial director for the UK, Ireland and the Nordic countries.