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Toyo to raise tire prices by 8%

Starting to see a trend here? Just about every major tire manufacturer has announced a price increase, and Toyo is now no exception.

Effective starting this month, Toyo will institute an 8% price increase on their wholesale tires including passenger, light truck, commercial truck, and OTR tires. That 8% is an average number, with certain Toyo lines being increased slightly more or less.

Of course, Toyo has cited the same reasons behind the adjustment as every other manufacturer:

“This price increase is due to the continued rise in raw material costs,” says John Hagan, senior director, sales operations for Toyo Tire U.S.A. “As always, Toyo Tires makes every effort to minimize these increases while still delivering a premium product. We appreciate the continued support and understanding of our loyal dealers and consumers.”

Simple, to the point, and nothing new.

So far Hankook, Cooper, Continental, Federal, Yokohama, Kumho, Goodyear, Falken, Bridgestone, and Michelin have announced price increases on commercial tires. It’s a little too late for wholesale tire distributors and retailers to stock up at this point, but it’s important to stay on top of industry news to maximize inventory levels before these sorts of increases. Stay tuned for the latest.


Filed under: Tire News, Toyo Tires

Toyo Tire Recall

Wholesale tire distributors and tire retailers should pay attention to the latest recall from Toyo, which has just been government-mandated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Luckily the safety recall affects less than 5,000 Toyo and Nitto brand tires. The reason for the recall? These tires were made with an out-of-spec rubber compound that may fail, causing tread sections to detach and lead to loss of control or a crash. The tires being recalled were manufactured at the Sendai plant in Japan during a 2-week period in September 2010. Toyo officials estimate that 588 tires were made with the faulty rubber compound.

Ther following P-metric and metric sizes are included in this safety recall campaign, depending on the DOT Serial number.

Toyo Versado CUV: P245/55R19 103T, P235/55R20 102T, 235/55R18 100V, P255/65R18 109S.

Toyo Versado LX II: 215/60R16 95V.

Toyo Open Country A/T: LT285/70R17 121S.

Toyo Tourevo LS II: 245/45R18 96V.

Nitto Terra Grappler: 255/55R18 109S.

If you own these Toyo tires, inspect them to make sure that they are not affected by this recall. If you are not sure how to perform the inspection, take them to a local tire dealer or tire wholesaler.

Any customers affected by the recall will receive free replacement tires as well as coverage for all expenses related to mounting and balancing the replacements.


Filed under: Tire News, Tire Recalls, Tire Safety, Toyo Tires

Bridgestone set to raise tire prices (again) on April 1st

No April Fool’s joke here – Bridgestone has announced that it will raise prices on wholesale tires yet again on April 1st, 2011. In an announcement, Bridgestone blamed “unprecdented” increases in raw materials and transportation costs. The 8% price hike will affect consumer replacement tires and original equipment tires in the U.S. and Canada.

“While we are always working to balance costs and deliver a premium package of value to our customers, these extraordinary increases in costs related to manufacturing make these price adjustments necessary,” says Larry Magee, BATO’s U.S. and Canada consumer tire president.

Bridgestone last raised prices on its wholesale Bridgestone tires on November 1st. That was also an 8% hike, but only affected U.S. markets.

What does this mean for businesses and consumers? Well, if you were in the market for Bridgestone tires, make sure to buy them as soon as possible. And if you’re an automotive business or tire retailer, make sure to stock up on popular wholesale Bridgestone tires before this hike has a chance to chip away at your profit margin!

Filed under: Bridgestone Tires, Tire News

Hankook Tire Reaches Record Sales in 2010

hankook tires wholesale

Not all tire manufacturers had bad news to report in 2010. Hankook Tire just announced its fiscal year 2010 performance results with global sales an operating profit that have broken the company’s previous annual records. Hankook’s global tire sales topped $4.8 billion USD (11.5% increase year-over-year), and their operating profit was an impressive $523 million (6.7% increase year-over-year). What makes Hankook’s accomplishments so special is the fact that raw materials have been steadily rising in price and forcing manufacturers to re-think their supply chains, pricing, and plans for growth.

So Il Lee, president of Hankook Tire America Corporation, had this to say about the company’s successful year: “In 2010, our company has had another successful, record-breaking year in North America as well as globally. Hankook Tire North America, USA and Canada combined, recorded sales of 12.6 million tires, totaling $1 billion with a growth rate of 21 percent.”

So what did Hankook say was behind their record-breaking performance? Emerging markets drove demand for wholesale Hankook tires while sales in strategic markets in North America, Europe, and Asia remained steady. Hankook has also enjoyed a positive response and surging demand for their Ultra-High Performance (UHP) tires. Global sales for UHP tires alone saw a 42% increase year-over-year.

So where do they go from here? Hankook has set the bar higher for 2011, aiming to achieve $5.4 billion in global sales, another 11% annual increase. Hankook believes that boosted production capacity in their Hungarian plant will make achieving this goal possible. Stay tuned for more news.




Filed under: Hankook Tires, Tire News

Despite price increases, unit tire sales were up for most retailers

2010 was a big year for tire wholesalers and tire retailers alike. Manufacturers raised prices across the board, and automotive businesses worked hard to stay in the black working with smaller profit margins. And yet despite all the doom and gloom surrounding the current economic situation, things do seem to be improving.

According to a “state of the industry” survey coordinated by Modern Tire Dealer, nearly 60% of tire retailers estimated their unit sales were up by an average of 10% in 2010. More than 68% said that their dollar sales were up by an average of 11%.

wholesale tire dealers

If you think that’s impressive, wholesale tire distributors posted even better numbers. More than 70% of tire wholesalers said their unit sales were up by an average of 13%; More than 82% said their dollar sales were up by an average of 14%!

These are pretty surprising numbers considering all of the bad news coming out of the automotive and tire industry these days. When 70% of the retailers and 80% of wholesalers report sales that were no worse than flat in 2010 as compared to the previous year, that’s actually something to smile about.

Only time will tell what 2011 has in store for our industry, but the results of this quarterly survey are certain promising. Check back in a few months for an analysis of the latest survey results.

Filed under: Tire News

Yokohama will raise prices on its light and medium commercial truck tires

Yokohama Tire Corp. has announced that effective January 1st, 2011, it will be raising prices on its complete lineup of light and medium commercial truck tires. In addition to a 6% hike on commercial tire prices and a 5% increase on bias and radial OTR tires, Yokohama also plans to announce additional in-line price adjustments at a future date.

Gary Nash, Yokohama VP of the OTR division, explains, “It’s a very difficult decision, especially in light of these tough economic times. However, by incorporating operational efficiencies with our environmental procedures and the latest technology, Yokohama remains committed to bringing the best products to the market at competitive prices.”

John Cooney, Yokohama director of commercial sales, adds, “As always, we continue to do our best to contain costs. We have avoided increasing prices but unfortunately, find it necessary to have the continued rise in the costs of raw materials, manufacturing and transportation reflected in our product pricing.”

Yokohama’s price hike is part of a growing industry trend among top tire manufacturers. Pirelli, Michelin, BFGoodrich, Bridgestone, Toyo, Falken, Kumho, Hankook, and Cooper have all planned similar increases.

For dealers looking to extend profit margins, now is the time to stock up on wholesale tires and wholesale truck tires at current prices. Once manufacturers adjust their price tags, consumers will be forced to shell out the extra cash.

Filed under: Tire Business Tips, Tire News, Truck/Commercial Tires, Yokohama Tires

Continental introduces new bus and RV tire

While most of the new tires being introduced these days are typically for passenger and commercial truck applications, Continental is making its presence felt in the recreational vehicle and regional bus segment of the market. The company has officially introduced its newest RV and bus tire, the HSR2 SA, which is a specialized all-position tire that will be manufactured at the companies Mt. Vernon plant in Illinois.

According to Continental Tire, the new Heavy Regional Steer tire delivers “maximum fuel efficiency on regional roads through advanced tread design and compounding.”

For companies looking for more mileage out of their wholesale truck tires, the HSR2 SA was verified as a low rolling resistance tire by the EPA SmartWay program (when used in line haul steer positions).

“A standard method of travel in Central and South America, bus and rapid transit is rapidly growing in the North American markets as public transportation systems are added and consumers look for ways to reduce their environmental impact,” said Clif Armstrong, CTA’s marketing director for commercial tires. “By completing our product lineup for bus tires with the HSR2 SA, we have introduced our first regional application bus tire for the Americas that will help fleet managers and even RV drivers control their tire and fuel costs.”

Among the novel features of this new tire are:

  • customized tread geometry designed to aid in water evacuation
  • good wet traction
  • reduced stone retention
  • A five-rib tread design and VAI+ visual alignment indicator system to help ensure even wear

The new Continental HSR2 SA is available now from tire wholesalers throughout North and South America in the following sizes:

  • 275/80R22.5
  • 295/80R22.5
  • 315/80R22.5


Filed under: Continental Tires, Tire News

Nexen opens new tire plant in Korea

buy nexen tiresNexen Tire has continued the expansion of their manufacturing capacity, breaking ground on a second plant in Changnyeong, South Korea. The new tire manufacturing plant will increase the company’s South Korean and Chinese production to 60 million units. The need for the new plant reflects increasing market share for wholesale Nexen tires throughout the world.

Nexen officials say the new plant represents a 1.2 trillion won ($986 million USD) investment. Trial production runs should begin in Q4 2011, with full-scale manufacturing expected to begin in March 2012.

Officials also say that the new plant was designed with eco-friendly goals in mind. Cutting edge technology was used to create an automated process that minimizes waste and unnecessary negative impact on the environment.

The company’s most recent plant, in Qingdao, China, opened for business in 2007 to meet increasing global demand for Nexen high performance, passenger, SUV, light truck, and winter tires. Nexen is headquartered in headquartered in Yangsan, South Gyeongsang Province, and Seoul, South Korea.

Filed under: Nexen Tires, Tire News, ,

Goodyear moving tire production out of Taiwan plant

tire wholesalers goodyearGoodyear has announced that they will be closing there one and only plant in Taiwan in an effort to reduce costs. They will seek to move production to a lower-cost country. The Taoyuan plant currently manufacturers passenger and light truck/SUV tires and employs over 250 people. The plant has been pumping out Goodyear tires for the Taiwan and Asian export markets for 41 years. The official last day of the plant is just a couple months from now: July 31, 2010.

Despite the plant closure, the company released a statement that reiterated the fact that “Goodyear remains committed to the Taiwan market and will work to ensure that there is no disruption to the supply of products or services to its valued customers.”
Just 3 years ago, Goodyear had announced ambitious plans to invest almost $300 million in modernizing the facility and equiping it for the production of low-profile premium tires. In 2007, Goodyear Asia Pacific president Pierre Cohade had said: “This new investment underscores our confidence in Taiwan’s manufacturing capabilities, with its unprecedented competence in innovation, high-quality and flexible workforce, as well as its supply chain management. For Goodyear, we will continue to work with our partners to provide best-of-breed products and services to meet the needs of our customers in the Taiwan and global markets.”

It seems that despite their best intentions, Goodyear has fallen victim to the hard-hitting downturn that is affecting so many companies in the automotive industry. It will be interesting to see which “low-cost” country receives the privilege of hosting Goodyear’s new plant. Tire wholesalers should not expect any delay or disruption in inventory. No word yet on when that decision will be made.

Filed under: Goodyear Tires, Tire News, Uncategorized

WTO to investigate Chinese tire tariffs

According to documents published today, the World Trade Organization is about to get involved in the ongoing US-China tire tariff dispute. The WTO investigation is the result of an appeal filed by China immediately after the Obama administration approved double digit tariffs on Chinese tire exports for the next three years. Since then, trade relations have gotten rocky as China retaliated with tariffs of their own on US products like chicken, industrial acids, and nylon. In return, the US imposed tariffs on steel pipes imported from China, and has begun looking into allegations that China has been selling below cost, or “dumping” products in the US. In short, things are getting ugly.

The WTO will formalize the panel at a meeting tomorrow (January 19, 2010). The three-judge panel will investigate whether the U.S. respected WTO rules in levying the so-called “safeguard” tariffs on Chinese tires. As part of the agreement to join the WTO in 2001, China had agreed to allow other member counties to impose safeguard tariffs on Chinese products if the flow of imports significantly affected domestic factories and employment. The US maintains that this is exactly what is happening with Chinese tires as the domestic auto market struggles amidst a global downturn.

According to trade data, it seems like the US could make a strong case. China gained a 17% market share in the US between 2004 and 2008, as their tire imports rose from $5.1 billion to $9.3 billion. At only $50 a tire, it was growing easy for Chinese products to undercut their domestic American counterparts. Seven US tire plants closed during this time period, and nearly 5,000 positions in the tire industry disappeared.

The WTO’s investigation will continue for 9 months before a judgeship is issued. If the panel finds the US unfairly imposed the tariffs in opposition to WTO agreements, China would be allowed to impose tariffs of their own to recoup their losses. The US could appeal the verdict, meaning that this particular investigation is far from being over.

Filed under: Tire News, , , ,