October, 2006 Archives - Tire Review Magazine
Unstoppable!: Despite Concerns, Wheel Companies See a Bright, Shiny Future For the Aftermarket

Stratospheric fuel costs. Steep living costs. Erratic job market. Add that all up, and you’ve got one strapped consumer. The average, middle-class buyer these days is spending every last dime on necessities. John Q. Public is foregoing the fun stuff in favor of the staples. Just getting there in one piece has become more important

The Final Lap: Flag Drops on Tire Competition in Major Race Series

It was a sad, sad day, Oct. 22 was. Mark a big black flag on your calendar. Shed a little tear. When the checkered flag dropped on that day’s Brazilian Grand Prix, it marked the official end of real competition in big-time racing. As of Oct. 23, there is no longer any competition in NASCAR.

Measure By Measure: Part II: Five More Ways to Grow and Maintain Tire Profits

Last time, I described six different ways for tire dealers to measure and improve tire profits. Known as key performance indicators (KPIs), these benchmarks provide a way to measure the performance of your business. KPIs are important because you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Even though many dealers agree with this business concept, most

Shops in Crisis? The Tech Shortage: A Special Report: Part II

In our August issue, we began an in-depth look at an issue that has been described as one of the automotive aftermarket’s biggest hurdles: attracting qualified technicians and preventing an industry-wide shortage that, some insist, is inevitable. While most experts agree that a shortage does exist, it appears to be centered at the highest, most

Speed Matters: Selling R-Compound Tires May Help Cement Customer Relationships

So you want to get into the business of selling unique tires? Let’s see…how about starting off with a low-volume product line with relatively low margins in a market that’s so small no one can seem to estimate its size – or potential? Hmmm. That sounds like a great opportunity. Okay, zap – you’ve now

The Short List: A Few Expert Recommendations Can Help Dealers Get Ready For TPMS

Every business that has a service bay and changes tires has at least one mantra these days – preparing for the final TPMS compliance date – Sept. 1, 2007. That’s the date when the NHTSA edict goes into full effect, mandating tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) on all new cars. However, as most observers and

Newest Spin: Modern Balancing Technology More Precise Than Ever

Since the 1970s, static balance has been at the head of the list among proving-grounds engineers. But, those machines had to take a back seat for decades as the complexities of vehicle suspension multiplied. Dynamic balance – the wave of the future – probably corrected more vehicle flaws than tire/wheel issues. Today, vehicle component technology

Making the Case: Super Wide Tires Being Accepted as Positive Evidence Builds

Any change in truck components, including tires and engines, certainly qualifies as a major item affecting operating costs. And, changes are viewed with considerable skepticism until field proven ‘beyond a reasonable doubt.’ Consider that the justice system in the U.S. uses this difficult-to-overcome standard in evaluating criminal cases yet favors a somewhat relaxed standard called

Above and Beyond: Knowing the Latest TPMS Technology Will Set Your Business Apart

Picking up from where we left off in August, this month, we’re going to flip to the other side of the TPMS coin and see what’s going on in the aftermarket. The aftermarket was born from the creative minds of people who were able to adapt. TPMS is no different. Instead of being afraid of

It’s What’s Going On: Underestimating Brand Study Bad for Tire Companies – And Dealers

By and large, tire companies are a lot better ‘business partners’ than they were 20-odd years ago when I first broke into this industry. Back in the day, there were some obvious differences between marketers. Some would do anything to sell everything at any time, damn the consequences. Others were a tad more considerate of

It’s Not Easy Being Single

I sometimes wonder how our industry ever managed the leap of faith it took to convert from gasoline to diesel engines or from tube-type to tubeless tires. Having lived through much of the latter example, I remember several key observations. The performance and cost-savings advantages of tubeless tires were obvious early on, especially to tire