With the pandemic situation continuing to place 2021 motorsport series in doubt, racers are preparing to get involved in Esports. While digital competition has been a growing trend for several years, interest in digital motorsport spiked in response to the suspension of series across Europe in 2020. A leading Mini Challenge competitor, Dan Zelos is looking forward to his return to the track on 16 January, as the championship’s official eSeries commences. Zelos is supported by Davanti Tyres; the UK tyre brand will also boast a presence in the competition as Zelos pilots his Davanti-branded Mini around virtual versions of every circuit on the 2021 calendar.
The Davanti tyre brand has been supporting emergency services in the UK and Poland by supplying tyres and training to certain ambulance and complex hazard services.
First, while the pandemic has reduced miles driven across the UK, off road expert Edd Cobley has been training key workers to be ready to respond to complex situations – all on Davanti Terratoura tyres.
Davanti Tyres is opening a European Development Centre at Applus+ IDIADA. The brand, owned by the UK’s Oak Group, says the centre will “spearhead its next-generation tyre design.” Davanti has previously used the Spanish facility, located in the northeast of the country near Barcelona, in the development of its tyres. It says the facility will allow its research and development team to experiment more with innovative new designs and materials, speed up new product development, and enhance ongoing testing and improvement of its existing range. General manager Peter Cross calls the move “the biggest step Davanti has taken since we brought our first tyre – the DX390 – to market.”
Davanti and Evergreen have joined premium brands in hailing 2020 as “a big year for electric vans.” The trend towards electric vehicles in the light commercial sector has gathered pace as van manufacturers announced new models. Meanwhile the Covid-19 pandemic served to underline the importance of delivery drivers to the economy. Delivery giant UPS placed an order for 10,000 electric vans over the next four years. Currently in the UK, there are 10,300 electric vans registered. Davanti, the Oak Group’s tyre brand, and Evergreen for which its wholesale arm serves as UK distributor both say they are prepared for the electrification of the van parc with their current products.
A subsidiary of Volvo- and Lotus-owner Geely, London Electric Vehicle Company has awarded Davanti Tyres its first OE approval. Davanti’s DX440 light commercial van tyre has earned 100 per cent OE approval for the company’s VN5 electric van, which has now entered full production.
Oak Tyres is marking 40 years in business – and of consecutive years of “sales growth” in 2020. The independently owned company, which is a founder member of Grouptyre, says that its sustained progress is down to its service-led philosophy: “If we provide a better service than our competitor, great things will happen” – its guiding statement since its establishment in 1980. Today, Oak has become one of the largest independent tyre wholesalers in the UK. It has more than 500,000 sq ft of warehouse space across its Haydock, St Helens, Manchester, Leeds and Tyne and Wear sites. In the last decade in particular, Oak’s distribution of two successful brands from the Far East – Landsail and Evergreen, both exclusively distributed – has supported impressive market penetration for both. Since 2015, Oak has established its own global private tyre brand, Davanti, which at the last count is present in more than 60 countries.
For the fourth year in a row, Michelin can be found at the top of Tyres & Accessories’ 2020 UK social media ranking. Indeed, such is Michelin’s dominance in the annual table, only Goodyear (in 2012) and Dunlop (in 2016) have done enough to overtake the UK arm of the French tyre brand since our research began in 2011. In both cases, Michelin still managed to take second place.
The Mini Challenge returns this weekend for its second set of races since its Covid-delayed start at Donington Park (1-2 August). The JCW field is linked to the British Touring Car Championship, both as a support series for the first time in 2020 and by virtue of its switch from Dunlop rubber to European sister brand Goodyear, which supplies the BTCC. The move to Goodyear, in the final year of its 2017 penned Dunlop supply deal, signifies the continued realignment of the Goodyear brand within motorsport. Having already returned to the international stage with top-flight series like the FIA World Endurance Championship, Goodyear wants to expand its presence in national series too. The Mini Challenge JCWs run on a variation of Goodyear’s new Eagle F1 SuperSport slick tyre range. The company stresses the strength of this move for the development of competitors looking to make the step up to the headline BTCC series.
British auto designer Sterling Automotive says global demand has increased for unique car customisation. The custom car brand, which is partnered and supplied by UK-based Davanti Tyres, accentuates British design heritage, with leatherwork, metalwork and 3D-printed body panels created at its Blackburn headquarters. “As a new business, the pandemic did throw up some significant challenges for us to navigate,” said Carl Williamson, managing director of Sterling Automotive. “But fortunately we were able to launch our first vehicles – our reimagined Jeep Wrangler and our fresh Audi Q8 project – before it struck. Those vehicles really captured a lot of attention globally and we’re now seeing this translate into firm interest from both clients and the wider car community.”
Formula 1’s Portuguese grand prix will take place at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimão for the first time on 23-25 October. The rescheduled 2020 F1 season has put the circuit in elite company, with Silverstone (31 July-2 August and 7-9 August), Spa (28-30 August), Monza (4-6 September), the Nürburgring (9-11 October) and Imola (31 October-1 November) all hosting competitive racing in challenging times. UK brand Davanti Tyres is the official tyre partner at the track, a position it has held since 2017. “This is an incredible achievement for the team at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve,” said Davanti general manager Peter Cross.
Davanti marked its fifth anniversary with its first international dealer conference at the end of February. The tyre brand hosted more than 150 attendees by Everton Football Club’s Goodison Park, where it’s development director Gary Cross took the opportunity to announce its upcoming products, including range extensions and what might be called the second generation of Davanti tyres given the new naming conventions first introduced in the Wintoura winter tyre and Terratoura all-terrain 4×4 tyre ranges. Davanti sales director for UK and Ireland Sean Maddocks also presented observations on tyre markets, the development of the brand’s global dealer network over the past five years, and its commercial partnerships including the renewal of its official brand partnership with Everton FC.
Davanti Tyres has appointed Najib Chakhtoura sales director for the Middle East and Africa, in order to establish a “permanent presence” in the region. Chakhtoura is tasked with developing relationships with new and existing distributors to increase the brand’s global reach and sales volume. He previously held senior roles developing premium brands across the UAE, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Kuwait and North and East Africa. Chakhtoura will establish a new regional office for Davanti to introduce the brand into new territories across North, East and West Africa, the Gulf States and the wider Middle East.
Vehicle customiser Sterling Automotive Design has signed a new partnership with Davanti Tyres. Blackburn-based Sterling is a new design house specialising in reimagining iconic vehicles with British style. Their work includes bespoke full-vehicle, premium customisations and lighter-touch enhancements to external bodywork or upholstery. Sterling brand director Doug Topott said fellow British brand Davanti shares “a similar ethos” to the company.
North West 4×4 Response has made Davanti its tyre partner. The crisis support charity will fit the brand’s all-terrain Terratoura as its official tyre. North West 4×4 Response volunteer drivers use their own 4×4 vehicles to provide access for midwives, firefighters, food and supplies to communities that are difficult to access.