WAYNE, N.J., December 2, 2008 – Hankook Tire, the seventh-largest and one of the fastest growing tire manufacturers in the world’, has had three of its commercial fleet tires certified for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) SmartWay Program, meeting the program’s requirement to reduce rolling resistance by 3 percent. The recently launched AL07+ steer tire, Z35a drive tire and TL01 trailer tire all provide lower rolling resistance to meet SmartWay standards designed to promote cleaner, more efficient truck technologies.
“Diminishing the carbon footprint, improving fuel economy and reducing costs are the key areas of focus for the commercial fleet industry currently,” said Brian Sheehey, commercial tires director, Hankook Tire America Corp. “The SmartWay Program specifically addresses those concerns, providing fleet owners a clear means to reduce costs and help the environment. It’s a win-win, and Hankook is privileged to be a part of the solution with our SmartWay compliancy.”
“This certification coupled with our industry-leading warranties and competitive pricing further enhances the value of our product offering to the 1,000 SmartWay Partners. This is a true validation of Hankook’s innovative technology, product and performance.”
Through Kontrol Technology, Hankook Tire’s technology philosophy as well as proprietary innovations, the AL07+ steer tire, launched in August, uses a breakthrough mixing system to ensure longer tread life without sacrificing performance. Hankook calls the process Innovative Mixing System (IMS), which reinforces a stronger bond of the materials and generates lower heat – both characteristics improve tire life. Other innovations also improve the tire’s durability.
The Z35a drive tire has extra-rugged tread with a special long-wearing compound that is resistant to cuts, abrasions and stone retention. Its large footprint and aggressive tread design ensure outstanding traction and braking in all weather conditions.
The TL01 long-haul trailer tire was designed with fuel efficiency in mind. The shallower skid depth of the TL01 trailer tire contributes to its reduced rolling resistance.
“Hankook consistently invests approximately 5 percent of revenue into technological innovation,” said Sheehey. “We are particularly focused on improving fuel efficiencies and lowering the rolling resistance of current and future products. We definitely plan to get additional Hankook products certified for the SmartWay Program over the next several months.”
Engineers at Hankook’s Akron Technical Center in Akron, Ohio, took the lead on all compliancy testing and product development to help the tire maker secure this achievement.
The EPA launched SmartWay in early 2004 to address the environmental and economic challenges surrounding growth in the freight industry. Through SmartWay, EPA is now working with more than 1,000 businesses to improve both their bottom line and the environment. According to the EPA, SmartWay partners are collectively saving more than 595 million gallons of diesel fuel each year – slashing fuel costs by at least $2.5 billion annually – and eliminating 6.8 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to global warming. For more information on the SmartWay program, please visit www.epa.gov/smartway.