Dayton president to retire in '99 NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Tom Crofutt, president of Bridgestone/Firestone Inc.'s Dayton Tire Co. division, will retire at the end of this year.
Mr. Crofutt, 57, began his career at Firestone's Memphis, Tenn., plant in 1963. He was appointed salary supervisor at the plant in 1975 and department manager in 1977.
In 1983, Mr. Crofutt transferred to Firestone's Des Moines, Iowa, plant as manager of the heavy duty truck and tractor tire departments. He became production manager of the Oklahoma City facility in 1984, then plant manager in 1989.
Mr. Crofutt was appointed vice president of manufacturing and development of Dayton Tire in 1991 and has held his current position of president since 1995.
CGT gains Taurus, Sable OE fitments
CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Ford Motor Co. has selected the Continental brand as original equipment for the Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable.
Ford will fit the Continental TouringContact AS on all Tauruses and Sables manufactured at the auto maker's Chicago plant. Continental already fits the Lincoln Navigator and Lincoln LS.
``This fitment will provide our dealers with additional selling points for the TouringContact AS tires they stock,'' said Chris Dickson, CGT vice president of passenger/light truck replacement sales and marketing.
The tire is exclusive to North America. It is M & S rated for all-season performance and T-rated for speed capacity to 118 mph.
Cooper sales hit record in 3rd qtr.
FINDLAY, Ohio—Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. reported a 15.2-percent increase in earnings to $34.6 million for the third quarter ended Sept. 30.
Citing strong sales in its tire and automotive operations, the Findlay tire maker's sales jumped 10.7 percent to $531.9 million, an all-time record for the third quarter, the company said.
Operating profits from Cooper's tire segment climbed 14.6 percent from the 1998 period to $45.3 million. Sales from the tire operations rose 9 percent to $424.3 million.
For the nine-month period, earnings surged 16.9 percent from last year to $103.9 million. Sales reached $1.5 billion, a gain of 8.3 percent from 1998.
Sales for Cooper's tire operations reached $1.1 billion for the nine-month period, a 7.3-percent increase from 1998.
Carlisle acquires Cragar wheel biz
PHOENIX—Carlisle Tire & Wheel Co. has agreed to acquire Cragar Industries Inc.'s specialty steel-based wheel assets and has signed an exclusive licensing agreement.
Under terms of the agreements, which weren't disclosed, Carlisle will be granted an exclusive license to manufacture, market, distribute and sell Cragar's line of steel-based automobile and light truck wheels. Carlisle also has the right to extend Cragar's line into other vehicle wheels such as golf carts, ATVs and other motorized vehicles.
On Sept. 30, Cragar licensed its wrought aluminum wheel business to Weld Racing Inc. and currently is looking for a partner to sign a licensing agreement for its one-piece cast aluminum wheel business, President and CEO Michael Hartzmark said.
Titan, Catterpillar sign LSW deal
QUINCY, Ill.—Titan International Inc. has signed a deal to build its LSW tire and wheel assemblies for Caterpillar Inc.
Titan CEO and President Maurice Taylor Jr. said on Oct. 19 the company will supply the LSW units for skid steer loaders manufactured at Caterpillar's Sanford, N.C., facilities.
The LSW assemblies feature a shorter tire sidewall with a larger wheel to maintain the same outside tire diameter as conventional designs. The units will be marketed as Caterpillar LSW products. As a result, Mr. Taylor said Caterpillar will make a push into the tire business and Titan can supply under a very credible name.
Ricardo Martinez leaves NHTSA
WASHINGTON—Ricardo Martinez, the emergency room physician who has served as administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration since 1994, has left the agency to accept a senior position at an Internet health care firm in Atlanta.
No successor has been named, but the agency has appointed Rosalyn Millman as deputy administrator.