ERJ staff report (TB)
By Bruce Davis, Tyre Business staff
Changyeong, South Korea -- Nexen Tyre Corp. has gained an OE fitment with Fiat S.p.A. and is developing a run-flat tyre that's scheduled to hit the market early next year.
The OE fitments with Fiat are for the 2013 version of the Italian car maker's Multipla multi-purpose-vehicle-which is slated to be sold in North America starting next year-and for Fiat's Doblo light commercial vehicle, starting in 2014.
These two fitments reflect Nexen's strategy to expand its OE business to a quarter of its annual sales by 2017, according to presentations made this week to US, European and Asian journalists invited by Nexen to tour its newest factory, a $1 billion-plus car and light truck tyre plant in Changnyeong.
The Multipla fitment will be Nexen's CP671 tyre. The tyre maker did not say what size.
Most of Nexen's OE growth will be in markets outside of Korea, according to Joo Ho Song, senior managing director, global marketing, who said the firm's goal is to be selling 3.5 million OE tyres overseas by 2017 vs. just 276,000 this past year. In South Korea, OE sales are expected to grow about 7 to 8 percent a year during this same time to 4.7 million units.
The new plant will play a significant role, Nexen executives said, as it should be contributing 21 million units a year by 2018.
Nexen started supplying Hyundai Corp.'s U.S. assembly plant last year and has more OE fitments in the works.
As for the run-flat, Nexen indicated it would be offering versions of its N7000, N8000 and Winguard tyre lines. Executives did not go into great detail as to the run-flat's construction but said the models would be sold worldwide in the aftermarket.
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Article from Tire Business, a Crain publication