ERJ: What is the current status of ExxonMobil’s efforts to have minimum air-retention properties made mandatory in various world regions?
JV: There is a lack of awareness at the regulatory level about the significant effect air retention can have on tire performance and of the wide variation in performance between tire brands.
Current testing for labelling is only done under optimal conditions to “pass” the test. The real world, of course, is not optimal conditions and consumers in general are not very good at maintaining their tires properly.
Trying to educate the consumer about the benefits of proper tire maintenance has not worked and cannot be relied upon.
It’s time for the industry and governments to make this a priority and add minimum air retention standards to the next generation of tire performance standards and regulations.
ERJ: What scope does ExxonMobil see for progress on the tire-labelling front going forward?
JV: To achieve real world benefits for the consumer, and to significantly improve the effectiveness of tire-labelling, minimum air retention performance standards need to be included.
ERJ: Any update on progress with General Motors and any other automakers in terms of requiring minimum air-retention properties in tires?
JV: Currently GM and FCA require a maximum air pressure loss rate of 2.5% per month. ExxonMobil is currently working with several OEMs and other stake-holders in the value chain to increase awareness and promote the implementation of air retention standards at the OE and regulatory level.