LONDON—Michelin and French machinery supplier Fives S.A. have set up a 50/50 joint venture to develop industrial machines and production shops for metal 3D printing.
According to Pierre Robert, director of Michelins' research and design center in Ladoux, France, the joint venture, called AddUp, will offer "cutting edge technology which improves tire performance."
"With 3D printing, we are able to make molds with very complex features. The idea is to have tread features that can regenerate throughout the life of tire," Robert said.
The move is part of Michelin's drive to manufacture longer-lasting tires that can maintain high levels of grip even at the statutory minimum 1.6 millimeters (2/32 nd inch) tread depth.