Toyo Considering Expanding U.S. Facility
According to multiple sources including Bloomberg News and Automotive News, Toyo Tires is considering expanding the capacity of their plant in Georgia. It’s still in the early stages, but this would be good news for the U.S. economy and the Georgia economy. It likely won’t have an impact on the price of Toyo tires, which are at the higher end, but could impact how quickly they get to market.
As you may know, Toyo is a Japanese tire company founded in 1945. The company also owns the Nitto brand. Toyo was the first Japanese tire maker to establish a U.S. subsidiary and is currently one of the more active participants in U.S. motorsports. It’s great to see a foreign company investing in the region and continuing to build on their success. We constantly hear good things about Toyo and see their products everywhere, so hopefully this Japanese/U.S. partnership will continue with great success.
Nitto Grappler Commercial
Have you seen the latest commercial for the Grappler series tires by Nitto? We were actually pretty impressed by the advertisment. It shows the versatility of the tire, great looking off-road vehicles and decent music. Sometimes these commercials can end up cheezy or lame, but Nitto did a pretty good job. So what’s next for the commercial? The Super Bowl, NBA Finals, World Series, Miss America? We have no clue, but were hopeful it will show up soon on mainstream TV. For now, we’ll just have to watch commercials with great anticipation.
What do you think of the commercial? Did Nitto hit the mark or were they way off base?
Rings Designed Like Tires
We recently came across an interesting story from TireBusiness.com. The story highlights Brian Bergeron, a jeweler in Rhode Island, who designs rings (jewelry) that look like tires. As a designer, Brian credits the unique design of tire treads that led him to create the rings. Here’s one of the great quotes from the article:
“One of the other reasons why the idea kind of spoke to me is because I’ve been in the jewelry business for a while, and I’ve seen all kinds of different jewelry, but it seems to me for the majority of people who purchase jewelry a big part of that purchase is sentimental. It’s a meaningful object—it’s not just a decorative object. Automotive and mechanical things are something a lot of people enjoy and are into and do socially.”
To read the entire article, click here. To see more rings or purchase a tire ring, visit www.brianbergerondesigns.com/
Article by Wes Bradle
Interco Employee Pleads Guilty to Fraud
According to TheRepublic.com, a 53-year-old former salesman of Interco named Deynoodt Joseph Besse pleaded guilty to wire fraud this month, which cost the company almost $144,000. The U.S. Attorney who handled the case said that in January 2003, Deynoodt created a company called INT Sales. He would create sales for Interco and then use a device to credit the sale to his company instead of Interco. Besse was let go from Interco in 2010.
So what’s the punishment? The maximum sentence is 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, but we’d guess it won’t be that high. Either way, it’s just another reminder that skimming a little for yourself from a big company is a recipe for disaster. We’re a little surprised that Deynoodt could pull this off for so long, but glad that Interco caught him. Honesty is the best policy.
Nitto May Expand to Latin America
There are some rumblings in the tire community suggesting that Nitto may be expanding to Latin America. In a recent article from tirebusiness.com, the company said, “The product, it’s out there. It shows up and it’s not an officially authorized product, so we were missing out on a huge opportunity. Definitely there is excitement. We definitely have enthusiasts there. There is demand, so it would be foolish of us not to follow that call.” That’s pretty amazing that the market demand is so big that Nitto tires are showing up without the company distributing to the region.
Could you imagine having a lifted truck in the backwoods or the coastlines of Brazil? What about on the red sand in Chile? Latin America would be a great market for lifted trucks because of their focus on an outdoor lifestyle. The markets small, but who knows what will happen. Nitto plans to start shipping tires beginning March 1, focusing first on Brazil and Chile then Paraguay. You go Nitto!
Toyo End of the World Promotion
Did you know that the world may cease to exist on December 21, 2012? No, we didn’t invent this idea. If you haven’t heard, the Mayan calendar stops on this date, causing some to predict that the world may end on this date. If the world does fall apart on this day, then SoCalTrucks.com and everything else won’t really matter. If not, Toyo is running a contest where the grand prize winner will receive a custom 2012 2-door Jeep Wrangler equipped with a set of Open Country A/T II tires.
The contest is officially called Toyo Tires vs. The Mayans. Other prizes include:
FIRST PRIZE: a trip for winner and one (1) guest to Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. Trip includes: round-trip coach class air travel, double occupancy hotel accommodations for five (5) days/four (4) nights, ground transportation to and/or from the airport and the hotel, one (1) optional excursion and a $400 Visa Gift Card to be used for travel incidentals. Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”): $5,000.
WEEKLY ENTRY PERIOD PRIZES: Each winner may choose one set of four (4) Toyo Tires for a passenger vehicle or a light truck up to twenty (20) inches in wheel diameter from a list of available tires provided by Sponsor. The ARV per set of four (4) Toyo Tires range from $300 to $2,200, depending on the Toyo Tires selected.
This is really a win, win, win situation. If the world ends, no object on this earth will matter. If it doesn’t and you win, you will enjoy the earth more thoroughly with a new Jeep, a vacation, or a new set of tirese. If the world doesn’t end and you don’t win anything from Toyo, at least you are still alive. We like it when there’s no downside to a situation. To enter the contest, visit Facebook.com/ToyoTires
Have You Seen The Nitto Dura Grappler?
Most lifted truck owners have heard of Nitto Mud-Grappler, Terra-Grappler, or Dune-Grappler tires. Some may have heard of the newer Trail Grappler (which will be writing about soon). But the Nitto tire featured in this article is the Dura Grappler. This tire is really built for everyday driving as well as some light off-roading. It provides a combination of tread life and ride comfort that are key for someone commuting or driving around town in a lifted truck on a daily basis.
The Dura Grappler is suitable for a wide variety of light trucks and SUVs, but be aware that the max size is 35 inches. So if you have anything bigger than an 8″ suspension lift, you will want to go with a bigger Nitto tire. Whether you’re working on a construction site or towing your toys, the Dura Grappler was designed to meet the needs of your big truck.
The Dura Grapller has bridges added between tread blocks to join individual blocks into continuous ribs. This stabilizes the tire and reduces tread flex. This, in combination with harder compounds, provides improved tread life. Dura-Belt 3Steel Belted Technology reinforces and stabilizes the tire’s internal construction to help reduce irregular wear and improve treadlife. Nitto offers a 45,000-mile to 60,000-mile limited treadwear warranty depending on the size of the tire.
Another nice feature is that Nito offers two distinct sidewall designs so you can customize your look. Tread patterns will vary by size: LT-Metric sizes are offered in a durable 4-rib design, while P-Metric sizes have a quiet 5-rib design.
This tire will run you around $300 per tire (before installation). Check out the video below for more info on the Nitto Dura Grappler or visit NittoTire.com
Toyo May Scale Back China Operations
According to Bloomberg, Toyo Tire may slow or stop making investment in China due to anti-Japan sentiment coming from the country. This could lead them to invest in other Southeast Asian countries instead of Big Red. All this comes after Japan bought islands claimed by both countries. We’re not sure what the big deal is, but I guess the U.S. would get pissed if China bought Hawaii.
For now, this shouldn’t have an impact on the U.S. operations of Toyo, but you never know. Who knows how this will impact the company, especially if China stops buying Japanese products or a conflict occurs in the region. As the Bloomberg article points out, China is Toyo’s second largest manufacturing region next to Malaysia. This issue could lead to higher prices if Toyo cannot expand fast enough outside of the region. Keep your fingers crossed. Click here to read the entire Bloomberg article.
Toyo Introduces OpenCountry A/T II
Pavement is optional with the new Toyo OpenCountry All-Terrain (A/T) II all-terrain tires. This tires is versatile, allowing for on-and-off road use. They offer over 40% more treadlife than the leading competitors. The cash you save from buying new tires could be used to upgrade other parts of your lifted truck. The A/T’s still look aggressive with their tread design and will maintain a more quiet ride than a traditional mud-terrain tire. The all-new Open Country A/T II comes with an industry-leading 65,000-mile warranty and their “No Regrets” 45-day, 500-mile trial offer.
The tire size range from 28″ to 35″ and of course, we would recommend going with 33″ tires or larger. The 33″ tires will go as big as 20″ wheels and the 35″ tires will go up to 22″ wheels. Price varies based on size of the tire, but a typical 35″ Toyo OC A/T II that will fit 18″ wheels will run about $300-$400 per tire.
Vehicle fitments for the Open Country A/T II include the following trucks. To see if the Open Country A/T II is right for your vehicle use the TOYO tire finder.
Chevy Silverado 1500/2500/3500
GMC Sierra 1500
Nitto Number 1 on Facebook
That’s right, Nitto has 1.7 million likes on Facebook, making them the most popular tire manufacturer in the industry. In fact, they are more popular than Toyota and Ford according to ModernTireDealer.com (“MTD”). According to to MTD, Nitto’s focus is making the product right and everything else follows. The next closest tire manufacturer to Nitto was Falken, who received 580,000+ likes. Check out the full article here.
Pretty amazing to see Nitto dominating the social media atmosphere. Not to mention they beat out organizations like Bridgestone, Toyo, Michelin, and the once mighty BF Goodrich. Congrats Nitto!