CLERMONT-FERRAND, France—Michelin has inked a 10-year agreement with Emirates Airline to supply the carrier with radial tires for its Airbus A380 commercial aircraft fleet.
The agreement is retroactive to July and ensures Michelin will be the sole supplier of new and replacement tires for Emirates' A380 fleet. Emirates will receive its fleet by June 2013, a Michelin spokeswoman said, and the contract with the tire maker will run 10 years.
The spokeswoman wouldn't comment on financial details of the agreement nor if the deal included retreaded tires, but she did say that “typically most commercial agreements include new and retreaded tires.”
Over time, Emirates—based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates—will develop the largest A380 fleet in the world, Michelin said. The airline has orders for 58 of the aircraft.
Michelin will supply Emirates with its Near Zero Growth radial tires—which the tire maker said are impact- and damage-resistant—a line already used for the Airbus A340-500 aircraft. The relatively longer-lasting NZG tires can make 30-40 percent more landings than diagonal tires and reduce the total weight of the aircraft by 360 kilograms, thus reducing the aircraft's fuel consumption, Michelin said.
Each of Emirates' A380 aircraft will be fitted with 20 NZG tires as main landing gear with the ability to carry a payload of 33 metric tons at 378 kilometers per hour, the tire maker said.
Emirates started its first A380 service in August. As of that date, aircraft maker Airbus S.A.S. had 202 A380 planes on order from 17 different customers, according to the company's Web site. Michelin is in negotiations with several other airlines to supply tires for the Airbus A380, the spokeswoman said.
The company develops its aircraft tires at its Michelin Technology Center in Ladoux, France, and manufactures them at its Bourges, France, plant.
Demand for Michelin's radial aircraft tires is up, the spokeswoman said, particularly in the commercial market. The company is doubling production at the Bourges manufacturing facility by 2012 to meet those growing needs, the spokeswoman said.