Goodyear has announced two new truck tyre lines – KMAX and FUELMAX. These brand new tyres will help lower fleets’ operating costs thanks to the extended mileage and low rolling resistance they offer. A recent survey of European fleets, commissioned by Goodyear , confirms that today’s vehicle operators have a different approach to buying tyres: they prefer to base their tyre choice on performance rather than tyre application. KMAX and FUELMAX will help them make an easier, business-oriented choice.
The Goodyear KMAX range, as the name implies, has been developed for improved mileage performance, while not compromising on other important criteria such as fuel efficiency and traction. Likewise the Goodyear FUELMAX range is for the operator seeking to optimise fuel efficiency combined with good mileage.
The survey also shows that the most important performance area for operators is rolling resistance, which directly influences fuel efficiency. Of the fleets interviewed, 77% classified this as "very important" or "extremely important". Mileage (76%) and wet grip (75%) classified second and third.
"We believe that KMAX and FUELMAX will make selecting new tyres much easier for fleet managers," said Boris Stevanovic, Marketing Director Truck Tyres EMEA, Goodyear Dunlop Tyres Europe. "This is because the savings they offer are clear and that will help the success of their businesses. The benefits will not only be thanks to their greater mileage and fuel economy, but also because of their versatility and winter performance capabilities."
The new tyres, which meet fleets’ top priorities, replace the successful Goodyear Long Haul and Regional Haul ranges, which included the Regional RHS II, RHD II+ and RHT II tyres as well as the frugal Marathon LHS II+, LHD II+ and LHT II tyres and can be used for both long haul and regional haul applications.
Goodyear KMAX tyres – up to 35% improved mileage compared to their predecessors
KMAX is a dedicated mileage line for on-road applications offering higher mileage and better all-year round performance than previous Goodyear tyres. The line comprises KMAX S steer tyres, KMAX D drive tyres and KMAX T trailer tyres. Compared to Goodyear’s RHS II and RHD II+ tyres, the KMAX can give up to 35% more mileage allowing fleets to drive even further, with all year round performance thanks to the improved traction and full winter tyre conformity of the drive tyres.
Tests show that in comparison to the RHS II steer tyre, the KMAX S achieves a mileage improvement of up to 30% and compared to the RHD II+ drive tyre, the KMAX D provides a mileage improvement of up to 35%.
Goodyear FUELMAX tyres – up to 10% less rolling resistance compared to their predecessors
FUELMAX is the fuel efficient line, offering the best rolling resistance of any Goodyear tyre for on-road applications with a balanced overall performance. The line comprises FUELMAX S steer tyres, FUELMAX D drive tyres and FUELMAX T trailer tyres. With up to a 10% improvement in rolling resistance they save money on fuel and reduce CO2 emissions; moreover, they also give up to 15% more mileage while at the same time provide greater versatility with enhanced traction. In comparison with the previous Goodyear LHS II and LHD II tyres, FUELMAX S and FUELMAX D show a mileage improvement of 15% and 10% respectively. Comparing FUELMAX S and FUELMAX D with LHS II+ and LHD II+ in terms of rolling resistance, the new tyres deliver an improvement of 6% and 10% respectively. The label grades for FUELMAX tyres confirm their outstanding performance in this area. This is illustrated by A-grades for fuel efficiency on some FUELMAX trailer tyres and predominately B-grades on the others.
KMAX & FUELMAX Field Trials
Before introducing any new tyres to the market, Goodyear always puts them through extensive internal tests as well external field trial programs in conjunction with fleet operators.
Transports Berthaud, was one of the fleets involved in the testing phase of the new KMAX range: "We carefully monitored the performance of our tyres, particularly their service life and fuel consumption," said Stéphane Helaiem, the general director of Transports Berthaud. "We can report a great improvement with the new Goodyear KMAX tyres, including a gain in potential service life of more than 30% compared with the Goodyear Regional line. Good traction in snowy conditions is particularly important for us, as we have to deliver our goods on time. In these conditions our drivers reported better traction and road holding than with the previous tyres."
Transports Berthaud based in Nimes, France has a fleet of 118 vehicles and carries frozen goods such as fresh fruit and vegetables. Their annual mileage is around 12 million kilometres and they mainly operate on scheduled routes between Lyon, Strasbourg, Bordeaux and Rungis near Paris.
Transports Pedretti tested both the new KMAX and the FUELMAX ranges.
"We tested FUELMAX tyres in long haul and KMAX in regional haul. FUELMAX gave us a saving in fuel of €1600 per vehicle per year and the service life of the KMAX was impressively better than our current tyres", said Cédric Pedretti, owner of Transports Pedretti. "Both new tyres show a good balance between wear and fuel consumption; FUELMAX showing great performance with regard to fuel consumption, whilst KMAX has excellent service life. We covered around 150,000 kilometres with the FUELMAX tyres over one year and through all four seasons. During this period we achieved a fuel consumption of 33 liters per 100 kilometres. Compared to the current tyres, this gives us savings of around €1,600 per year per vehicle.
"We tested KMAX, covering around 100,000 kilometres, and this showed that service life increased by around 25% compared with the current tyres. We have delivered to winter sports resorts under very difficult conditions for many years. Some of our drivers delivering to those resorts, found that it wasn’t necessary to use snow chains as often as they had done previously."
Transports Pedretti is a 50-year-old family transport business based in Savoy, France. The company runs three different business portfolios: Industrial goods, refrigerated goods and vehicle transport. In addition to this, they operate transport services throughout France.
Change in Trends & Winter Requirements
European road transport trends have changed in recent years. Previously fleets tended to specialise in either long haul or regional operations, with vehicles dedicated to one or the other. This meant that tyres optimised for either type of operation were the obvious choice. Transport has become more flexible, often requiring vehicles to undertake a range of duties covering anything from urban distribution to long distance haulage. KMAX and FUELMAX are suitable for both applications.
Another change relates to winter road conditions and associated regulations. Unpredictable winter conditions, virtually across the whole of Europe, as well as increasingly stringent regulations in connection with winter tyres, have led to a strong demand for regular tyres capable of assuring mobility in winter conditions. The new KMAX and FUELMAX tyres have been further developed with this in mind so that they have a true all season capability, with the drive tyres fulfilling full winter tyre requirements and carrying the three-peak-mountain with Snowflake symbol (3PMSF) and M+S marking. The Goodyear survey shows that 64% of fleets would like standard tyres with good winter performance – KMAX and FUELMAX tyres provide just that.
KMAX and FUELMAX feature KMAX and FUELMAX technologies respectively.
The KMAX Technology includes the IntelliMax Rib Technology and the IntelliMax Tread Technology while the FUELMAX Technology includes the IntelliMax Groove Technology.
The IntelliMax Rib Technology (featured in KMAX S) improves rolling resistance and wet grip, and relates to the tread pattern, which features stiffener technology for high cornering forces and handling feel.
The IntelliMax Tread Technology (featured in KMAX D) comprises dual layers of tread with the top compound for high mileage and the base compound to ensure low rolling resistance.
The IntelliMax Groove Technology (featured in FUELMAX S), optimises rolling resistance thanks to a ‘hidden’ tread pattern molded into the tyre.
Extended Tyre Life
As with all Goodyear commercial vehicle tyres, KMAX and FUELMAX tyres are both regrooveable and retreadable. TreadMax versions of the KMAX D and T as well as the FUELMAX D and T are being launched simultaneously with the new tyres they replicate. These are built on Goodyear’s latest technology carcasses and use the same tread patterns and materials as the new tyres so that their performance is very similar.