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It's a bird! It's a plane!'s Llanta Man!

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Faster than an ultra-high-performance tire! More powerful than an impact wrench! Able to leap tall SUVs in a single bound! It's Llanta Man (Spanish for Tire Man)-and he's coming to save the day (or at least your vehicle) at Uniroyal-brand tire dealerships in major Hispanic markets in September.

Michelin North America Inc.'s new Uniroyal cartoon superhero will appear in a 12-page Spanish-language informational comic book, available for free in dealership waiting rooms, to help educate Hispanic consumers about tire and automotive maintenance.

The ``Llanta Man'' character is the alter ego of Uniroyal Hispanic spokesperson Ricardo Rodriguez-Long, according to the tire company. Mr. Rodriguez-Long is an automotive expert and editor of Auto a Fondo, a Spanish-language automotive magazine, and he manages a truck dealership in California.

The brochure is produced in the style of a ``historieta,'' a Hispanic-style comic book popular in Latin America and Hispanic neighborhoods in the U.S. Initially, the brochures will be available in dealership locations in Miami, Houston, Las Vegas and Tucson, Ariz., and expand to other markets after the first of the year, according to a company spokeswoman. It also will be downloadable on the Uniroyal Spanish language Web site,

The brochure offers tips on how consumers can save money through tire and automotive maintenance, such as checking tire pressure and oil levels.

The tire company will provide brochure display holders for dealerships to put on their service counters or in waiting rooms, and dealers can insert their own coupons in the brochures, the company spokeswoman said. The comics will be supported with public relations and local advertising. She said Michelin also is considering customizing future brochures to include individual dealership information.

The brochure is an extension of Uniroyal's Hispanic marketing campaign, Manejando Ahorro El Casa (Driving Savings Home), launched last year with Mr. Rodriguez-Long providing tire and automotive advice to consumers through appearances on Spanish-language TV, radio and publications. The campaign has tallied more than 30 million consumer media impressions this year, according to the company. The campaign focuses on the Uniroyal brand due to its name recognition in Latin America and the U.S. Hispanic community.

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Previous | Published February 1, 2019

What issue concerns you most heading into 2019?

The threat of more tariffs.
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