Goodyear introduces G395 LHS steer tire, new manufacturing process

| Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Goodyear has introduced a new line of haul steer tires, the G395 LHS, designed to provide improved ride quality, better tread stability and greater retreadability.

The tire has a limited warranty of seven years with a maximum of three retreads. The tires are made using Goodyear’s new, patent-protected IMPACT System, which means Integrated Manufacturing, Precision Assembly, Cellular Technology.

The IMPACT System could only be implemented using advanced computerization, developed with assistance from Sandia National Laboratories. This cooperation is available only to American owned companies.

With the IMPACT System, as many as 25 individual tire parts or components are pre-precision manufactured into subassemblies, then brought together for final assembly before molding and curing. Quality is checked using lasers during all stages of the computer controlled manufacturing process. The result is a tire that exceeds benchmark performance levels by about 30 percent, weighs 3 to 4 pounds less than comparable tires and improves ride quality.

The G395 LHS features a pressure distribution groove that separates sidewall stresses from the tread, resulting in a barrel-shaped footprint ideal for the steer position. It has five straight ribs with sipes and edge blades for traction and to minimize uneven wear. Angled grooves are exposed as the tire wears, enhancing traction and handling.

David Barrow, a 16-year veteran driver from Danville, VA, said, “That was my first time to drive on the new tire, and, wow, it felt like I was floating. The tire hugged the road. It was a real smooth ride. I can tell a world of difference in the tires.”

G395s are in production now, using new, proprietary equipment that cost more than $60 million. The tire carries a premium price, about 10 percent higher than the current G397s. Goodyear plans to eventually expand the IMPACT System to the manufacture of all truck tires.

--by Paul Abelson, technical editor

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