GENEVA, Switzerland-Insufficient conductivity of early production series Michelin ``green'' tires is being investigated as a possible contributor to an electrostatic build-up problem on Opel Astra compacts that led to flash fires in Germany in the past three years and prompted Opel to recall 2.3 million cars. The fires all occurred during fueling, and the primary cause of the fires was improper grounding of gasoline station fueling pumps and/or the pavement on which the cars were parked at the time, Opel emphasized.
In two of the nine cases documented thus far, Adam Opel A.G.-General Motors Corp.'s European arm-determined Michelin silica-based technology ``green'' tires fitted to the Astras did not meet the OE specification for electrostatic conductivity, and played a role in the build-up of a static charge.
New tire show to focus on Asia
BROMLEY, England-Tyre Exhibitions, an organizer of Brityrex, the United Kingdom's International Tire and Equipment show, is planning to launch a similar event in Singapore for the Southeast Asia tire market.
The new event, Tyrex Asia, is slated for September 1996 and will include seminars covering all aspects of the tire industry worldwide with particular reference to the Asian markets.
For more information, contact Tyre Exhibitions, Labelex Exhibitions Ltd., 131 Southlands Road, Bromley, Kent BR2 9QT, U.K.; tel. 0181-313-3535. Fax: 0181-468-7472.
Japan's tire sales expected to rise
TOKYO-Japanese tire sales are expected to increase slightly in 1995 for the second consecutive year, according to a Lehman Brothers Inc. report.
Japan's tire market will continue to recover after shrinking from 1990 to 1993, but the comeback will fall short of the country's 1989 production level of 165.4 million tires by more than 15 million units, according to the report.
Lehman expects original equipment tire shipments to increase 1.4 percent to 212,000 tons and replacement shipments to rise 3.8 percent to 383,000 tons from 1994 levels.
Shanghi Tyre to restucture
SHANGHAI, China-Shanghai Tyre & Rubber Co. Ltd., the stock-held Chinese tire maker, is among a group of Shanghai-based industrial enterprises that will be restructured into state-controlled conglomerates but incorporating ``modern enterprise'' concepts.
Details of the conglomerate scheme are still sketchy, but the official Chinese news agency, Xinhua, said the conglomerates will combine loss-making companies with profitable ones in the hope that the resulting enterprises will become strong enough to compete internationally.
The Swiss Bank in Hong Kong said it will take several years for the conglomerate scheme to be carried out and therefore shouldn't affect Shanghai Tyre's performance in the short run.