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A Tire Industry Perspective on Tire Rolling Resistance. Tracey Norberg Rubber Manufacturers Association Presentation to the California Energy Commission September 19, 2002. RMA Overview. U.S. trade association for the rubber manufacturing industry

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a tire industry perspective on tire rolling resistance

A Tire Industry Perspective on Tire Rolling Resistance

Tracey Norberg

Rubber Manufacturers Association

Presentation to the

California Energy Commission

September 19, 2002

rma overview
RMA Overview
  • U.S. trade association for the rubber manufacturing industry
  • Represents all major tire manufacturers in the U.S. and over 100 engineered products manufacturers
  • Key functions:
    • Advocacy on government laws and regulations
    • Tire safety and performance standards
    • Scrap tire market and technical resources
    • Technical standards for engineered products
    • Tire and rubber industry statistics and information
    • Communications on industry issues
rma tire member presence in ca
RMA Tire Member Presence in CA
  • Approximately:
    • 323 company-owned stores
    • 595 independent retail outlets
    • 28 commercial tire service centers
    • 1 retail zone office
    • 6 retail district offices
    • 6 tire distribution centers
    • 1 North American corporate headquarters
rma environmental advocacy
RMA Environmental Advocacy
  • Promote sound science
  • Educate government about industry needs and issues
  • Support environmental progress that is technically and economically sound
  • Protect formulation and manufacturing flexibility and confidentiality
  • Encourage opportunities for innovation
  • Individual member companies also have environmental goals and policies
tire industry accomplishments
Tire Industry Accomplishments
  • Lower rolling resistance tires
  • Reduction in quantity of raw materials used to make tires
  • Increased average tire life
  • Retreading – 16.2 million tires retreaded in U.S. in 2001
  • Recycled content in new tires
average tire life 1980 2001






Average Miles Received (000's)





























Source: Panel of Vehicle Owning Households

Average Tire Life 1980 – 2001

2001 – 43,000 miles

1981 – 28,000 miles

tire industry design flexibility needs
Tire Industry Design Flexibility Needs
  • Dynamic industry – new and evolving products demand new materials and rubber compounds
  • Specialty Products
  • Emerging Technologies and Trends
    • Recycled content in tires
    • Low profile/larger diameter tires for passenger tire applications
  • Globalization of industry
    • Emerging global technical and environmental regulations affecting tire content, performance and testing
    • Need to be able to manufacture tires for multiple markets
tread act t ransportation r ecall e nhancement a ccountability and d ocumentation act
TREAD Act(Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability and Documentation Act)
  • U.S. law passed November 1, 2000
  • Congressional response to August 2000 tire recall
  • Mandates 12 separate NHTSA rulemakings
  • Impacts yet to be anticipated fully, since some regulations still in development
  • Key rulemakings with potential to affect tire construction and performance
tire testing
Tire Testing
  • NHTSA Proposed rule (3/6/02)
    • Updated tests for high speed and endurance
    • New tests for road hazard, bead unseating, low inflation and effects of tire aging
  • Proposal would set overly stringent standards
    • Current tires are safe – new tests would require over-engineered tires
    • Could require dramatic changes in tire construction and performance
  • Final rule expected Fall 2002
tire pressure monitoring system
Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • NHTSA final rule (5/30/02)
  • Mandates tire pressure monitoring systems on all new cars and light trucks starting with 2004 model year
  • System will notify drivers when a tire’s inflation pressure is 25 or 30% below placard pressure
  • RMA concerned that this will allow some tires to operate at inflation pressures that are insufficient to carry the vehicle load
  • RMA petitioned NHTSA to adopt a reserve pressure standard
tire design factors
Tire Design Factors
  • Tire design involves balancing among a complex list of tire performance criteria including:
tire design factors and trade offs
Tire Design Factors and Trade-Offs
  • Diagram is illustrative of trade-offs – does not represent any specific tires
  • Tires cannot be designed for maximum performance in all areas – involves trade-offs to meet customer needs
be tire smart play your part
Be Tire Smart – Play Your PART
  • Pressure, Alignment, Rotation, Tread
  • Industry consumer education campaign on proper tire care and safety
  • Proper tire care maximizes safety, performance, fuel economy and tire wear
  • Under inflation is a tire’s #1 enemy
  • RMA survey research found that nearly 90% of motorists incorrectly check tire pressure
be tire smart play your part19
Be Tire Smart – Play Your PART
  • Goals:
    • Communicate tire safety information to policy makers, media & the public
    • Establish key partnerships to enhance message delivery of RMA tire safety program
    • Raise consumer awareness of the importance of proper tire care and safety
  • 2003 regional focus on West – CA, OR, WA
rma summary
RMA Summary
  • Must view rolling resistance in context of all environmental, safety and performance parameters
  • Must recognize trade-offs and limitations in tire design (performance, tire life, cost, etc.)
  • Maintaining proper tire inflation pressure will have greatest impact on fuel economy