TOYO TIRE ITALIA STEPS ON THE GAS!
2016 will prove to be a year of great changes for the company based in Collesalvetti; starting with a new CEO and five new products ready to be launched on the Italian Market by the end of the year
Something’s happening in Collesalvetti. Speaking about Toyo Tire Italia, it is actually quite difficult to know where to start from, seeing the number of new initiatives planned by the Japanese group for the current year. Five new tires: the Open Country U/T, the Proxes CF2 SUV and Proxes R888R. In addition the Snowprox S954 and the Celcius. Not to mention a new CEO, the 53 year old Fabio Merli, former Marketing Director, with a long experience coming from the years spent in Yokohama and Michelin. 25 years in the Italian market, which deserves a celebration, not to mention the 70 years of activities by the group as a whole, which started back in 1945 under the leadership of its founder Rikimatsu Tomihisa and represents now the third Japanese tire company with 34 million tires per year.
5 new products during 2016
"We have just introduced the new Open Country U/T, a tire that, we think, is the perfect choice for all those midsize SUV owners – such as, for example, Nissan Qashqai, Mazda CX-5, Toyota RAV4 and VW Tiguan – all popular models on the Italian market. It will be available in 20 different sizes for wheels ranging between16 to18 inches. Still on SUVs, the new Proxes CF2 SUV will come in 24 sizes for wheels ranging between15 to 19 inches. Furthermore, we have the new R888R, a very special product since we are talking about a racing tire approved for road use and will be offered in 32 sizes for wheels between 13 to 20 inches. In September", anticipates Merli “our new Snowprox S954 will make its debut, a high performance winter tire with asymmetrical tread pattern which will be offered alongside the already known S943 and S953 with 51 sizes for wheels between 16 to 20 inches.
Almost at the same time, the new Celsius, an all-season asymmetrical tire, will be launched on the market. Designed for passenger cars and SUVs, will be initially also available in 51 sizes for wheels ranging between 16 to 20 inches, set to become 72 in the course of 2017. We really believe in this product , seeing the success it has already achieved in the United States where it has been available since last Autumn and the good results obtained by the Vario V2+ the sales of which soared by 38% in 2015 compared to the previous year”.
All these new products will be faced by a particularly wide and fierce competition. What are the strengths of Toyo Tires? "First and foremost I would say the good reputation of products ‘made in Japan’, says Merli. "All our tires are the final expression of millions of kilometers of testing under the toughest conditions as well as the use of sophisticated technologies and exclusive manufacturing processes. This is the case, for example, of our revolutionary T-Mode simulation system, which tests every little aspect of the final behavior of the tire, its traction qualities, changes in direction and braking distance. In second place, I would put the fact that, despite being evidently a second brand, Toyo Tires has the distinction - perhaps even the uniqueness – of being able to offer the contents of a premium brand product at almost budget prices. And this brings us to the last but certainly by no means the least place: our ability to ensure good profit margins to our 900 specialized dealers".
Specialized dealers under the spotlight
An important part of the commercial policy of Toyo Tire Italia has always been played by specialized retailers.
"We have always been very focused on their business. A couple of years ago we created a special program centered on our TAMP4, an asymmetric high performance tire for wheels between 13 to 18 inches, that a group of 147 selected Italian retailers can receive directly from the factory in Japan thus saving 7-8% over the total cost.
For Toyo in fact specialist dealers have always been considered key partners.
"Absolutely! And it could not be otherwise given that they represent 95% of our corporate turnover. Reason why we have a series of initiatives in the pipeline to support their business with financial instruments aimed at facilitating their access to our products, as well as co-marketing programs designed to increase brand awareness".
One of our initiatives in this regard relates to a great advertising presence in Italian football stadiums. In fact, drawing from the experience gained through an international agreement signed in the winter of 2013 with A.C. Milan and Leicester City, the greatest surprise in this year’s Premier League, Toyo Tire has signed additional agreements with Empoli F.C. and Torino F.C. for a permanent presence within their stadiums through banners, perimeter boards and backboards, as well as with Atalanta, Carpi, Chievo, Fiorentina, Genoa and Udinese.
“Creating the right conditions for our retail partners in order to promote our products” has always been the goal, and the initiative “Bike ToYou” fits in this context, with courtesy bikes available to the customers for free, allowing them to move around while work is being done on their cars.
This is Toyo Tire Italia
Created in 1991 as a bold initiative of three private entrepreneurs, Toyo Tire Italia SpA became a subsidiary of Toyo Tire & Rubber Company in 2007 and sells something like 610,000 tires per year (35% winter, 65% summer and all-seasons), which accounts for a little more than 3% of the domestic market, a turnover of almost 30 million Euros.
The headquarters in Collesalvetti currently houses a 12,500 sqm warehouse and enclosed yards for another 10,000 square meters with a storage capacity of 150,000 pieces, making it the second Toyo Tire’s distribution center in Europe. The proximity of an important port in Livorno makes it a strategic point, while its physical location and collaboration with couriers such as BRT and Fratelli Bianchi makes it possible to process customer orders within 24 hours.
Focus on technology
Toyo tires are the expression of sophisticated technology. Even before the grueling tests for millions of kilometers in the most difficult road conditions, exclusive patented computerized techniques, such as the revolutionary T-Mode simulation system, examine every little aspect of the final behavior of the tire, its traction qualities, changes in direction and braking distance, allowing the engineers to anticipate on-road testing results.
The exclusive CASPAN system (Computer Aided Simulator of Pattern Noise) makes it possible to combine in one tire the best possible features of resistance to aquaplaning, riding comfort and low rolling noise. On the other hand, the DSOCC II program (Dynamic Stability Optimized Contact Theory) measures external forces and the tread’s contact patch, reducing the deformations of both the steel belt and the bead. The ADSATT system (Automotive Dynamic Simulation to Advanced Tire Technology) makes it possible to produce tires that are able to respond actively to each road surface, to the variation of the driving style and even to temperature.