ATLANTA. Seeking to reproduce its success in the aftermarket with its Roadmaster line of replacement tires, Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is rolling out a new line of Cooper-branded truck and bus radial (TBR) tires that it aims to sell to the original equipment (OE) segment of the trucking market, where they’ll be placed on brand new trucks and buses.
Gary Schroeder, global director truck and bus tire business at Cooper, said the company spent the last five years developing this new line of tires which will are grouped into three “series” based on application – PRO Series for the long-haul trucking sector; the WORK Series for regional-haul plus pick-up and delivery operations; and the SEVERE Series for mixed service/vocational applications.
During a press conference here at the technology & Maintenance Council (TMC) 2018 annual meeting, Schroder said Cooper’s PRO Series tires are constructed with “proprietary compounds and tread designs” that provide a balance of fuel efficiency and long miles to removal, while its WORK Series tires “balance fuel efficiency and tread life with scrub resistant properties.” Finally, the SEVERE Series is engineered for “the most demanding applications; built to withstand heavy scrub and cut/chip environments,” he explained.
Cooper brand TBR tires are SmartWay verified for fuel efficiency and come backed by a seven-year, two-retread warranty with full replacement value on the first 50 % of tread life on all PRO Series and WORK Series tires, the company added.
“We will add additional products in 2018 and 2019 to our new truck tire line,” Schroder said. “We are very bullish on launch of the brand. We’re in a strong trucking market now, with demand for OE and replacement tires up last year and quite high – and we’re seeing a strong start to the OE [tire] market again this year. There is high demand for fleet tires, and strong [tire market] tailwinds, too. It’s all focused on total cost of ownership: fleets are looking for ways to reduce tire costs. So the way we feel model will work is low cost of ownership combined with an extensive dealer service network and fleet national account program.”
He added that Cooper’s new TBR line will be rolled out first in the U.S. on May 1, followed by Canada and Mexico this summer. “And we’re going to continue offering our Roadmaster tires in the replacement channel,” Schroeder noted. “Roadmaster tends to serve more owner-operators, while the new Cooper-branded TBR line serves the ‘new tire’ segment for fleets. We don’t see them competing against one another.”