ATLANTA — Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. unveiled its latest commercial fleet technology, the ContiConnect digital tire-monitoring platform, at the North American Commercial Vehicle Show earlier this week in Atlanta.
The company said the technology is an efficient solution for remote tire monitoring, allowing fleet managers to monitor tire pressure and temperature data for the entire fleet via a single Web portal, every time trucks return to the fleet yard, saving inspection and maintenance time.
Conti claims ContiConnect helps fleets lower costs and increase uptime by saving maintenance time; protecting tires from long-term damage; reducing tire-related breakdowns and tire wear; and improving fuel efficiency and safety.
By identifying and resolving tire issues upon return to the fleet yard, the technology protects the tire from long-term damage, ensuring maximum miles and improved casing retreadability, Conti said.
The tire sensors can identify air loss, one of the major causes of tire failure, before it would be noticed in a pre- or post-trip inspection, Conti claimed, helping to reduce tire-related breakdowns on the road. Verifying proper tire inflation guarantees the highest possible fuel efficiency to save fuel costs, reduce tire wear and help prevent blowouts.
"ContiConnect is the starting point for Continental to become a profound partner for tire-related data services," said Nikolai Setzer, member of the executive board at Continental A.G. and head of the global tire division.
ContiConnect does not depend on a telematics or over-the-road connection, the company said. Tire data are collected via sensors, which are mounted on the inner liner of the tire to prevent damage from kerbing, eliminate theft and ensure the sensor can detect tire temperature and pressure accurately without being influenced by heat from braking systems.
As trucks enter a fleet's yard, the yard reader station secures data from the sensors and transmits them to the ContiConnect Web portal via a cellular network.
In the portal, the fleet manager can access low pressure alerts, track data over time and view reports and analytics for all tires with sensors. The platform features customizable text and email notifications, so the fleet manager, maintenance supervisor or other personnel can receive immediate alerts when low tire pressure or high tire temperature is recorded.
Tire sensors can be retrofitted to a fleet's existing tires through a simple process. Select tire models are also available direct from the factory with sensors mounted to the liner during tire production.
Continental offers a range of digital tire monitoring systems to fit a fleet's individual business needs. Conti said the ContiPressureCheck tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) is simple to install and displays real-time tire pressure and temperature to the driver via an in-cab display, along with alerts if issues are identified. This helps protect drivers from top tire-related safety concerns.
The tire pressure monitoring system offers data integration with multiple telematics providers. Integration allows tire data to be seen in both the providers' in-cab displays and back-end portals.
"This is a great solution for my regional application, and I would definitely recommend it to others," said Bob Herr of regional food service distributor Feesers Inc. "I'm saving casings and time, and I no longer have to depend on my drivers to check tire pressure."
Feesers' commercial fleet was among a group of participants in a no-cost beta trial of the solution, Conti said. Other applications ranged from regional haul to construction to waste transport.