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Michelin opens its airless radial tire production plant


November 21, 2014
By Michelin

michelintweelNovember 21, 2014, Greenville, S.C. — Michelin marked the
opening of its newest plant in North America, which will produce the innovative
MICHELIN X TWEEL Airless Radial Tire for commercial applications.

michelintweelNovember 21, 2014, Greenville, S.C. — Michelin marked the
opening of its newest plant in North America, which will produce the innovative
MICHELIN X TWEEL Airless Radial Tire for commercial applications.

 

An idea first conceived by Michelin research engineers in
the United States, the TWEEL is a revolutionary non-pneumatic tire that changed
the configuration of a conventional tire, bringing together the tire and the
wheel assembly into one solid unit. The TWEEL comprises a rigid hub connected
to a shear beam by means of flexible, deformable polyurethane spokes, all
functioning as a single unit.

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Unlike conventional tires, the TWEEL has no air, thereby
solving what had seemed to be the unavoidable challenge of chronic flat tires.

 

The new plant gives Michelin the ability to boost output of
its award-winning MICHELIN X TWEEL SSL skid-steer tires and begin production of
the new MICHELIN X TWEEL TURFTM as original equipment for John Deere to equip
its ZTRAKTM 900 Series line-up of zero-turn commercial mowers.

 

“Differentiating us from competitors, the TWEEL airless
radial tire is the industry’s first commercialized airless radial solution and
verifies Michelin’s leadership for the next generation of mobility,” said Ralph
Dimenna, head of Michelin Tweel Technologies. “The TWEEL airless radial tire
enables Michelin to enter new markets and expand its reach in existing business
segments within the low-speed application category. The industry is hungry for
solutions contributing to productivity, safety and bottom lines. Serving our
customers is at the center of our strategy for success.”

 

The new 135,000 square-foot facility in Piedmont, S.C.,
represents Michelin’s 10th manufacturing facility in South Carolina and the
16th in the U.S. The company will invest about $50 million in the new plant.

 

“Michelin has been a global leader for over 125 years, and
we are proud to say they have been part of the South Carolina family for over
40 years,” said South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. “Michelin is a leader in the
tire industry, and they are innovative in their product development, which
continues to put South Carolina on the world stage.”