A Suffolk-based Volvo FH12 Globetrotter XL 6×2 tractor unit fitted with a set of Michelin XDE2 drive axle tyres has travelled the equivalent of 18 times round the equator.
Careful driving by Charlie Ramm, Elizabeth Kenyon, and fellow driver Tony
Banning, plus regular tyre maintenance by the company's own Michelin-trained technician has seen the tyres clock up an impressive 730,000km over their first two lives.
The 460 hp FH12 with iShift was delivered to Felixstowe-based KK&R Transport three years ago with Michelin 315/80 R22.5 XDE2 tyres specified as original equipment. Since then it has clocked up an average of 4,615km a week – almost the distance between England and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia (4,952km).
Charles Ramm, KK&R Transport's Manager comments: “We have only purchased two sets of Michelin XDE tyres in the last six years and they have each come with a
“We previously ran an Iveco Stralis which was purchased with a set of Michelin XDE2s and clocked up more than 500,000km during its life on our fleet, so when it came to ordering the Volvo we opted for Michelin again. The XDE2 tyres offer us the best combination of performance and economy on the mixture of motorway and A and B roads we use.”
KK&R Transport's container haulage business serves the Port of Felixstowe 24/7, with the FH12 being used for a mixture of trunking and national haulage contracts.
The tyres, which were regrooved for a second life when the tread depth reached 3mm, will be removed and sent back to Michelin's Remix facility in Stoke-on-Trent, where they will be remoulded into a new set of XDE2 Remix tyres in line with the Michelin Four Lives tyre policy.
Mr Ramm adds: “There is no doubt in my mind that the Michelin tyre is a premium product and that regrooving not only extends tyre life, but crucially reduces
the overall running costs of the vehicle per kilometre.”
Remix tyres are specially designed by Michelin to deliver almost identical performance to that of a new tyre, thanks to the strength of the original Michelin casing and the high quality of the Michelin Remix process.
Regrooving also helps to extend a tyre's most fuel efficient state and can reduce fuel consumption, in comparison with a new tyre, by as much as 10 per
cent. This is made possible since a tyre's rolling resistance gradually reduces as the tread depth wears down. The most fuel efficient state is the last few millimetres of tread – approximately the same depth to which most Michelin trucktyres are regrooved to.