AKRON—Goodyear has introduced three lines of Dunlop-brand tires for sale exclusively through outlets affiliated with its Gemini automotive service program and other selected Goodyear retailers. The Gemini program encompasses all of Goodyear's approximately 750 company-owned retail stores and about 1,000 independent dealer outlets, and Goodyear has said its goal is to add another 1,000 independent dealer outlets to the program this year.
The new Dunlop lines may be offered to some independent Goodyear dealers who are not Gemini members, said Mark Cherveny, Goodyear's product manager for broad market tires. Decisions about offering the lines to non-Gemini dealers will be made by Goodyear trade area management on a case-by-case basis, Mr. Cherveny said.
The new Dunlop Citation and Citation HP passenger lines and the Pioneer 424 light truck line are available for order now, Mr. Cherveny said.
The Dunlop Citation is an S-rated all-season radial with a UTQG rating of 480 AB and a 60,000-mile limited treadwear warranty. Designed for family cars, it is availble in 20 sizes: 17 whitewall; three blackwall.
The performance-oriented Citation HP features a T speed rating, a UTQG rating of 440 AB and, like the Citation, an M&S rating. It is offered in 19 sizes, with either raised-white-letter or black sidewall styling, the company said.
The S-rated Pioneer 424 features an aggressive, all-season tread design (M&S-rated) and a UTQG rating of 340 AB. Its five P-metric sizes sport outlined-white-letter sidewall styling.
Goodyear gained control of the Dunlop brand in North America and Europe through its "alliance" with Sumitomo Rubber Industries Inc., which was concluded last September.
Then in November, Goodyear announced its "G3" marketing strategy, which positions the Dunlop brand in the middle of a good-better-best hierarchy, with Goodyear as the premium brand and the Kelly brands as the value offering.