Michelin to invest in Okla. plant
ARMORE, Okla.-Michelin North America Inc. said it will invest $56 million through 2003 to upgrade equipment at its Ardmore facility.
The four-phase project will enable the plant to produce Michelin brand tires to meet consumer demands in the fastest growing market segments, Michelin said. Uniroyal and BFGoodrich brand tires are currently made there.
The project's first phase is scheduled to begin this year and be completed in 2003, Michelin said. An initial $10 million investment is complemented by a $2.7 million earmarked for a single piece of tire-building equipment.
The remaining three phases will be completed at a later, as yet unspecified time, as the market dictates them, Michelin said.
The latest influx of capital follows investments of $18.2 million the company made last year and $21.5 million in 2000.
Tire Barn joins ACCC group
MEMPHIS, Tenn.-Tire Barn Warehouse has joined the American Car Care Centers (ACCC) group as a member distributor in Indiana.
Family-owned Tire Barn was founded in Anderson, Ind., in 1930 as a distributor and retailer of petroleum products, tires, batteries and accessories. Its corporate name is Everybody's Oil Corp. The firm has 21 company-owned stores in Indiana and two in Illinois.
Counting Tire Barn, ACCC has 19 member distributors and more than 1,050 retail locations.
O.K. Tire inks new supply deals
LANGLEY, British Columbia-O.K. Tire Stores Inc. has inked supplier agreements with Continental Tire Canada Inc., Pirelli Tire North America Inc. and Interstate Batteries.
``With the ever-increasing presence of (those) manufacturers at the original equipment level, we felt we needed to join forces with these manufacturers to ensure that we filled the voids that may occur when servicing our present and future customers,'' said Nelson Gray, senior vice president, purchasing, export and development.
The dealer-owned company has 215 independent tire and auto service locations across Canada.
Minis to wear run-flat tires
AKRON-Either Goodyear or Pirelli run-flat tires will be on different versions of the 2003 Mini Cooper when the new car makes its scheduled U.S. debut in March.
Goodyear Eagle NCT 5 EMT (Extended Mobility Tire) run-flats are a summer-tire option on all Mini Cooper and Mini Cooper S cars coming to America, Goodyear said.
V-speed rated versions of the 195/55R15 run-flat are approved for the BMW-made car and are available in 16- and 17-inch sizes. The tires are being developed in Fulda, Germany, and Lawton, Okla.
A Pirelli Tire North America spokesman said the Pirelli Euforia will be fitted on the Mini Cooper S-a special version that comes with 17-inch tires. The Euforia is produced at Pirelli's new MIRS factory in Germany. The tire maker also is fitting the Mini with the P3000E in sizes 175/65R15 and 175/60R16.
RMA taking orders for book
WASHINGTON-The Rubber Manufacturers Association is taking orders for its Tire Industry Facts Book, which is expected to be available in April.
The book contains extensive information on the U.S. tire industry compiled from data supplied by companies which constitute more than 90 percent of the market, according to the RMA. It features shipment and production data for various tire categories: channel, region and brand distribution, natural and synthetic rubber usage, tire plant locations, tire size popularity and North American tire activity.
Annual data are presented after 1985 with prior data presented in five-year increments back to 1929. The Facts Book will be available in both hard copy and pdf software formats for $100. To order, visit the RMA Web site at www.rma.org, or contact the RMA at (202) 682-4800.
BFS, Conti work on run-flat systems
TOKYO-Continental A.G. and Bridgestone Corp. have agreed to work together to develop global standard run-flat systems for installation on standard wheels for passenger cars and light trucks.
Under terms of a deal signed in Tokyo, the firms will cross-license their respective run-flat tire technologies-the Conti Safety Ring (CSR) and Bridgestone's Self Supporting Runflat Tire (SSR) systems. The emphasis will be on developing run-flat systems for use with standard wheels for cars and light trucks, while increasing market penetration of the systems.
However, both firms will continue to work independently to develop run-flat systems and compete in markets for those systems.
Bridgestone has set a goal of producing 1.5 million run-flat tires in Japan by 2005, up from about 100,000 units this past year.