ATLANTA — Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is expanding its Work Series line of commercial truck tires with addition of two 19.5-inch sizes for Class 4 to 6 trucks and vans and an all-weather drive tire for regional fleet applications.
The tires will be available in June, but Cooper will be previewing them at the Technology & Maintenance Council (TMC) Transportation Technology Exhibition in Atlanta Feb. 24-26.
The new 19.5-inch tires are the All-Steel Drive and All-Steel All Position models in sizes 225/70R and 245/70R, while the All Weather Drive tire will be available in three sizes — 295/75R22.5 LR G, 11R22.5 LR H, and 11R24.5 LR H.
The new 19.5-inch tires are targeted at the growing "final-mile" marketplace, Cooper said, where smaller delivery vehicles are used.
"More and more vans and delivery trucks are on the road in final mile deliveries, and those operations continue to grow exponentially," Gary Schroeder, executive director of Cooper's global truck and bus tire business.
"These customers are looking for highly engineered tires that can hold up for long miles to removal, while providing excellent ride characteristics."
The ASD and ASA tires are designed to withstand punishment from constant curbing, Mr. Schroeder said, due to an extra strip of rubber on the sidewall – a curb bar – that helps ensure the integrity of the sidewall.
The tires also will perform well for vocational trucks such as utility vehicles, bucket trucks, and ambulances, Cooper said. To work well with EMT and ambulance operations, the tires, in size 225/70R, have an N-speed rating – the highest in the industry.
Both tires were designed with low cost of ownership in mind.
"We're out to provide excellent performance, long-tire life, and retreadability, balanced with a very competitive price to give our customers the value they're looking for," Mr. Schroeder said, adding that the tires have reduced rolling resistance as well.
The Work Series ASD features a steel-belted construction, 18/32nds-inch of tread depth in a four rib, open-shoulder design that Mr. Schroeder said helps deliver "crisp" handling for added driving confidence.
Special compounding allows the tire to withstand damage and tread loss from scrubbing, curbing, and rapid starts and stops. For added performance, chevron grooves provide biting edges for excellent traction, while the tire's 3D zig-zag siping interlocks to provide exceptional wet weather grip.
The tire carries the industry's Three Peak Mountain Snowflake certification for all-weather performance and is retreadable thanks to the "highly engineered" steel-belt package. It's warranted through the first 50% of treadwear.
The ASA tire features 17/32nds-inch of tread depth in a five-rib pattern, that's designed for the steer-axle position but also can be used as a drive tire for those running in operations where extra traction isn't required, Cooper said.
Like the ASD, the ASA has scrub-resistant compounding and all steel casing construction for long life. A special curb bar and stone ejectors combine to resist hazards commonly found in urban deliveries, while aisle sipes, near the edge of the tire, help in controlling irregular wear.
The tire also has Cooper's Wear Square treadwear indicators that show the tread depth through five different evolving image icons to help monitor wear and alignment.
The All Weather Drive (AWD) tire has an open-shoulder design with tightly packed center tread blocks that are highly siped, Cooper said, for enhanced traction and interlocked for tread stability while cornering.
Featuring 26/32nds-inch of tread depth and a wide footprint for long miles to removal, the tire has wide snow groves separating the three inner tread blocks from the outside ribs, a design that allows snow to pack in the tire, enhancing traction.
The tread blocks are staggered and zig-zag to promote optimum traction in all weather conditions, while shoulder pockets provide additional traction "bite" in tough driving conditions.
These various design elements combine into what Cooper calls its "Snow Groove Technology," and this is the first truck tire to employ it, Mr. Schroeder said.
It also is Three Peak Mountain Snowflake certified.
To ward off irregular wear and enhance performance, the tire features shoulder tie bars to provide stability to the shoulder ribs, allowing for a good balance of traction and irregular wear resistance. Stone ejectors, located between the tread blocks, help resist stone drilling while helping to maintain casing integrity.
Built around a four steel-belt casing, the AWD tire is highly retreadable and features an industry-leading full replacement value warranty for the first 50% of tread life.
The tires are sourced from Cooper's Qindao GRT factory in China.
These are the latest additions to the range of Cooper-brand truck tires, which the company relaunched two years ago after a decade-long hiatus tied to the phase-out in 2008 of domestic truck tire production.
Cooper introduced three ranges of truck tires in the 2018 relaunch: Pro Series designed to offer balance of fuel efficiency and original tread life; Work Series for balanced fuel efficiency and tread life with scrub-resistant properties; and Severe Series engineered to withstand heavy scrub and cut/chip environments.