Michelin North America Inc.'s BFGoodrich brand hosted approximately 60 dealers at the I-X Center in Cleveland, Ohio, for a training session on the g-Force Comp-2 A/S all-season UHP passenger tire and the All-Terrain T/A KO2 all-terrain light truck tire.
This was the 17th stop on a 21-location tour for the company that began in the Los Angeles market in April and will conclude at the end of August. In all, approximately 2,000 dealers will participate in the events.
Dealers pit the g-Force Comp-2 A/S against a competitor's tire in wet and dry pavement tests for handling, braking distance and control. An in-depth training session covers key features and benefits of the All-Terrain T/A KO2.
In Cleveland, BFG contract trainer Bob Bower noted the KO2 was in development for nine years. "I've seen a lot of tires come and go -- this one has the right bones." (For more information on this tire, see "BFGoodrich KO2: 1 million sold in 8 months.") The tire features 52% more sipes for improved grip than its predecessor, the KO, is 10% better in mud and has 19% better grip in snow. "We take the word 'all' in 'all-terrain' seriously," he said. The KO2 has earned the 3-Peak Mountain Snowflake designation from the Rubber Manufacturers Association.
The Comp-2 A/S was designed to accelerate fast, brake short and maintain control in all seasons, noted the company. The directional tread design optimizes rubber-to-road contact for optimum grip.
Michelin continues publicizing the tires to consumers via enthusiast magazines, in asphalt and off-road racing and through social media, but the best advertising remains word-of-mouth, the company said, "enthusiast-to-enthusiast."
According to Tom Sullivan, manager, public relations, the company has seen a significant lift in BFG's brand equity since the dealers have been engaged one-on-one. The dealers are asked vital questions before and after the events to get their perception of the products: "How likely are you to recommend our products?" and "Is BFG a brand I can trust?"
Thus far, the company has seen very positive responses and increased sales in each market compared with last year.
See also "Same terrain, new KO tire."