The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company has officially opened its new manufacturing facility in Dudelange, Luxembourg, an operation it calls a “first of its kind” for the company. The inauguration on 5 May follows a US$77 million investment in industry 4.0 digital manufacturing processes at the site.
With the latest SMMT data naming the Tesla Model 3 as the most popular new-car in December as well as the second most popular in 2021 – no-one can deny that the era of electric vehicles is well and truly upon. However, while internal combustion engines (ICE) have generally separated engine, wheel and tyre, electric vehicles are bringing these vital mobility components closer together than ever.
Once the 50:50 merger Peugeot S.A. (Groupe PSA) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) is completed, the new group will be called Stellantis.
According to the companies, Stellantis is rooted in the Latin verb “stello” meaning “to brighten with stars”.
Production at several Toyota factories in Europe has been suspended as a result of the coronavirus and its social and economic impact upon the region, and other facilities will be shuttered by the end of this week. Toyota Motor Europe (TME) says it decided to halt production for a number of reasons linked to the safety and security of its employees and stakeholders. In particular, it has needed to respond to short-term uncertainties in sales, logistics and supply chains resulting from lock-down measures implemented by various national and regional authorities.
The Sailun Group is investing around RMB 1 billion (£110.6 million) to boost passenger car tyre capacity at its factory in Dongying, Shandong Province to 27 million tyres a year. This growth will take place as part of Sailun’s ‘HP Tire Expansion Project’ and is considered a “necessary guarantee for the group to impact the domestic mid/high-end OE market.”
Following the news that Fiat-Chrysler (FCA) is warning that it could halt production at a European plant in a matter of weeks as a knock-on effect of the coronavirus, market analysts are predicting that such concerns and their impact “will spread rapidly”.
The short story is that internal OE demand is likely to be much harder hit than external exports. According to NBC, China could suffer the loss of 1 million vehicles worth of production due to the suspension of production for at least an extra week in the so-called “motor city” of Wuhan, which is located at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak and has a population of 11 million people.
Construction work on a project to expand STARCO’s operation in Poland officially commenced last week. STARCO says the addition of new warehouse and fitting facilities at the Mielec site, around 50 miles east of Krakow, will increase floorspace from 2,500 to 5,500 square metres. The new facilities should be operational early next year.
Following on from the launch at last year’s SIMA show of the Agriflex+ 389 VF, Alliance Tire Group (ATG) released further agricultural tyre lines during 2017, including the Alliance 128. The Yokohama Rubber-owned tyre maker also announced its intention to intensify its activities with OEM customers and has appointed a dedicated original equipment team.
In recent times, Starco has focused upon transforming its organisation from a national market set-up to a segment-based structure. Tyrepress.com talked to Starco CEO Richard Todd about this restructuring at Reifen 2016 and will cover it in detail at a later date (and in the July 2016 issue of Tyres & Accessories magazine), and also met Thomas Ballegaard, the man tasked with setting the structures of this new, segment-driven Starco.
A new organisational structure is being rolled out for Starco’s original equipment business in Western and Northern Europe. The company’s national sales entities will adopt a cross-border, segment-driven approach that will focus more strongly upon current customers and new, larger customers. Starco explains that this new structure’s adoption is being driven by market demands for specialised knowledge, strong supplier partnerships and cross-border mobility.
Heuver Tyrewholesale sees good opportunities for Aeolus brand commercial vehicle and earthmover tyres with OEM customers in Germany, and to help further its Aeolus activities in the original equipment segment has hired Guido Becker as account manager. Becker will concentrate on looking after the wholesaler’s Aeolus customers from within the tyre trade, freeing up Helmut Haak, who joined Heuver Tyrewholesale as account manager for Southern Germany in 2012, to focus on Aeolus within the OEM segment.
The European car industry is lobbying to delay the introduction of a tough new emissions testing regime designed to combat fears that carmakers are playing the system to boost their efficiency ratings. European cars are as much as 30 per cent less efficient than their manufacturers claim, according to the International Council on Clean Transportation, as carmakers take advantage of an archaic testing system that they want to keep in place for at least seven years.