Ford recalling Focus compacts
DETROIT-Ford Motor Co. will mail letters to a number of Focus compact car owners next month as part of a ``customer satisfaction program'' to replace the rear wheel seals on the vehicles.
The seals may experience surface corrosion-and not seal properly-in areas where salt is used on roadways in the winter, the car maker said, possibly weakening the wheel bearing and causing the entire wheel structure to wobble.
Approximately 279,646 Focus vehicles, model years 2000 and 2001, sold in the U.S. and Canada are affected. ``We're not blaming the seal,'' a Ford spokesman said. ``We're blaming vehicle development testing or the lack thereof.''
Bergey's licenses Marangoni system
FRANCONIA, Pa.-Bergey's Tire Service has signed a licensing agreement with Marangoni Tread North America Inc. to use the company's Ringtread retreading system.
Franconia-based Bergey's is the eighth retreader in the U.S. and the ninth in North America to adopt the Ringtread system, according to Bob Miner, vice president of marketing and sales for the Italian-owed retreading equipment and materials manufacturer.
As its name suggests, the Ringtread system involves the application of a circular-shaped precured tread to a buffed tire casing prior to vulcanization in a pressure chamber.
Bergey's is a 77-year-old dealership with seven commercial and three combination commercial and retail tire service outlets and two retreading plants in Pennsylvania.
Petro Centers adds Yokohama
FULLERTON, Calif.-Petro Stopping Centers, which operates 54 corporate and franchise truck stops across the U.S., has added the Yokohama tire brand to its offering of commercial truck tires.
Currently, Yokohama tires are available in all 36 corporate Petro locations and will soon be available in some and possibly all of the 18 franchise outlets, said David Latimer, vice president of Petro lube operations.
The partnership with Petro is part of an aggressive plan by Yokohama to grow its fleet service, the tire maker said. In addition, the Petro outlets also will service all Yokohama national accounts.
``Yokohama's goal is to continue expanding our leading customer service network for our commercial customers,'' said Jim MacMaster, executive vice president, business division. ``Petro's reputation for prestigious service and its national reach are a perfect fit for Yokohama and our customers.''
Petro added the Yokohama brand after receiving requests for the tires from fleet customers who said they ``ran really good,'' Mr. Latimer said. Besides Yokohama, Petro also offers Bridgestone, Firestone, Kelly and Michelin truck tires.
Petro Stopping Centers, founded in 1975, said it provides food, fuel and service to more than 100,000 truck drivers daily in the U.S.
BFS recalls Brazilian tires
SAO PAULO, Brazil-Bridgestone/Firestone do Brasil is recalling approximately 40,000 Firestone Steeltex AT light truck tires in a consumer satisfaction program, according to the company.
The company said the tires, all size P265/75R16, have suffered more than a dozen tread separations, but these have resulted in no known deaths or injuries. The tires were all Brazilian-made and intended for original equipment fitment on Brazilian-made Ford F-250 and F-350 pickup trucks,
They will be replaced by Steeltex tires with ``an enhanced tire compound'' that the firm expects ``will be better for the Brazilian marketplace,'' said a Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. spokeswoman.
U.K. retreaders on selling block
NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE, England-British retreaders Colway Tyres Ltd. and Motorway Tyres Ltd. have gone into receivership. The businesses are being offered for sale as going concerns by financial services firm KPMG International.
With annual sales of $9.5 million, Colway of Durham, England, retreaded tires for passenger cars, light trucks and 4x4 vehicles, with a capacity to process 1.7 million units a year. Colway last year retreaded about 1 million tires for both domestic and export markets.
Ohio, Phoenix use RMA info
WASHINGTON-Officials of the Ohio Turnpike Commission and the City of Phoenix will include information from the Rubber Manufacturers Association's ``Be Tire Smart-Play Your PART'' tire safety campaign in their latest safety programs, the RMA reported.
The Ohio Turnpike Commission will distribute RMA materials in its ``Safely Down the Pike'' auto safety campaign, while the City of Phoenix will distribute ``Be Tire Smart-Play Your PART'' brochures to city workers to promote tire maintenance on city vehicles.