Some tire makers have listings of such tire sizes in other markets, but Goodyear declined to comment on the issue and Continental said it will be introducing a 16-inch rim diameter all-steel-belt tire for the pickup and delivery segment in the U.S. in 2015.
“It's like the vans arrived before the support system was in place,” Mr. Rastetter said. “While that happens, in the past it's been an inconvenience that you couldn't get the type of tire you wanted. But it's never been quite as difficult as it appears today to have the incorrect capacity tire.”
Chrysler claims there is sufficient source of replacement tires for its ProMaster “and in the unlikely event the tires are not in stock at a dealership, they can be ordered,” in response to a Tire Business query.
“We do not expect customers to have this issue. The van has only recently launched and if a customer does not wish to use the Continental tire, a Nexen tire also will be available later this year. Please note, the Promaster has a full size spare.”
“The solution, to me, is really two-fold,” Mr. Rastetter explained. “First is inform tire dealers and consumers alike that their global vehicles is equipped with a very large load-carrying capable tire and that it needs to be replaced with a tire of the same design to provide them with safe and durable service.
“The other thing is to encourage the tire manufacturers that this new opportunity is coming and that in many cases its not much more difficult than accessing some of the tires already on their European lineups menu.”
What tire dealers have to do
Tire dealers will have to shop around for a replacement tire if a van comes into their shops. While there is a time lag for when the OE tire would wear out, there is the immediate concern about replacing damaged tires, Mr. Rastetter said. So far, Tire Rack has not received many customer requests for the Euro-metric commercial tires, he added, but it has the Conti sizes on order.