Hankook Tire America Corp.: "EV-related technology, digital transformation, airless tires and sustainable materials. It's all about sustainability these days," President Rob Williams said.
Giti Tire USA: "There are technological constraints between wet performance, treadwear and rolling resistance that limit all manufacturers. Think of it like a triangle, and when you pull on one corner to make improvements, the other two areas are decreased. Scientific advances continue to expand the base triangle over time, but the real game changer would be the ability to increase each trait independent of the others," said Kenny Lee, vice president of sales, consumer tire sales for Giti Tire USA.
"The biggest game changer, but probably not in the near term, is a non-pneumatic tire; if and when several things occur. First, it must perform like a standard tire. Secondly, it must exist within the current set of industry standards, which ideally would mean it could be mounted on a standard rim and not a specialized tire/rim assembly which will require too many SKUs for dealers."
Prinx Chengshan Tire: "The development of technology that combines low rolling resistance with long mileage for the EV market has the potential to be a game-changer in the tire industry. Additionally, the tire market may see a rise in smart technology integration, bringing innovative features to consumer tires," Samuel Felberbaum, president of Los Angeles-based Prinx Chengshan Tire North America Inc. said.
Balkrishna Industries Ltd. (BKT): "EV tires. BKT has developed a line of E-Ready tires with the Agrimax Factor. The reduced lug angle ensures less rolling resistance. The 5 percent increased contact area significantly reduces the noise level in the cab. Both features lead to a greater comfort level. The tire's braking on wet surfaces is improved. The tire's strong polyester casing provides good lateral stability and a faster steering response when used in high-speed operations and heavy-duty service. This initial offering of E-Ready tires shows BKT's commitment to electric mobility," said Doug Kershaw, president of BKT USA.
Continental Tire: "We believe manufacturers that are able to successfully minimize the trade-offs between the increasing requirements for high mileage, high efficiency (low rolling resistance), on vehicle performance (dry, wet, snow) AND increase the utilization of sustainable materials in tire design will have an advantage in the future. Continental is well positioned to take on these challenges," said Continental Tire the Americas CEO Jochen Etzel.
"In truck tires, digital-monitoring solutions and tread-depth prediction. This complete asset management, tire maintenance predictions and full tire as a asset management, through the life of a tire asset to optimize total cost of ownership within the tire fleet management.
"For the OE sector, Conti believes pneumatic tires are here to stay in the current planning horizon of Conti and our industry partners. Enhanced pneumatic tires with sealant layer or tire cavity noise-absorbing materials will continue to provide greater flexibility to OEMs in developing their future vehicle platforms which are primarily EV."
China Manufacturers Alliance (CMA)/Double Coin: "AI (artificial intelligence) seems to be the topic of growth and concern, with many ways of utilizing this technology in the industry, especially in the electric vehicle segment of the market. EV tires must have features and properties to address this type of vehicle dynamics," Aaron Murphy, senior vice president, said.
Kenda Tire: "Airless tire technology continues to evolve. Kenda offers this for specific non-DOT industrial applications to meet specific needs to eliminate vehicle down time. There may be some extended opportunities for DOT applications as the technology continues to evolve," Brandon Stotsenburg, vice president, automotive, for Kenda Tire said.
Kumho Tire USA: Shawn Denlein, president of sales and marketing at Kumho, said airless tires are an emerging technology to keep an eye on.
"The successful implementation of airless tires would be a game-changer," he said. "There's still some issues that need to be overcome with rolling resistance and heat generation with high-speed and high-load applications with airless technology, but that would be one to keep an eye on, and one we are in the process of developing."
Nokian Tyres: "Any technology that makes driving greener will help the industry change the game. We are on a quest to make our tires from 50 percent renewable or recycled materials by 2030, and other tire makers have similar aspirations. Replacing synthetic ingredients with natural ones will appeal to drivers, help the environment and elevate the reputation of our industry," Tommi Heinonen, vice president, North America, for Nokian Tyres P.L.C. said.