New Nokian One Is 'Next Step' in Company's NA Strategy
Nokian Tyres plc's new Nokian One all-season passenger tire will be exclusively available in North America, joining the Nokian One HT to cover more than 91% of the all-season tire segment in the United States and Canada.
The tire - which will be produced at Nokian's Dayton, Tenn., plant, as well as Nokian manufacturing facilities in Russia and Finland - "is the next step in Nokian Tyres' growth journey in North America," according to company officials, who add that Nokian has continued "to expand its presence in the all-season, all-weather and winter tire segments."
During a Jan. 12 virtual launch event for the tire, Tommi Heinonen, Nokian's director of sales for North America, said the Nokian One passenger offering - which will be available in 71 sizes - will help the tiremaker expand its presence in areas like the southwestern and southeastern U.S.
"We have a strong dealer base in Canada and the 'snowbelt' of the U.S.," he said. "But we are expanding our network" of tire dealers.
"We're already selling a lot of tires in California and Florida, but in order to be bigger (in the U.S.), we have to go to the south, where the car parc is higher."
The new One is Nokian's first passenger tire to feature the company's Aramid Sidewall Technology, in which puncture-resistant fibers are enmeshed in the product's sidewall.
The tire "is engineered to provide peace of mind in the moments North American drivers need it the most,” says Nokian Director of Products Steve Bourassa. “SUV and light truck drivers have loved this tire, and now we’re pleased to offer it for passenger cars, too, along with a Pothole Protection warranty that shows how confident we are in the tire’s durability.
“Research tells us that as many as of one-third of major U.S. roads are in poor condition, which results in annual vehicle maintenance costs of about $600 per driver,” he adds. “We engineered the Nokian Tyres One to withstand the toll rough roads can take, while delivering a comfortable driving experience.”
The tire also features a modern silica compound "engineered to excel in varying conditions," according to Nokian officials.
Its compound formulation "allows the tire to carry a higher mileage warranty – 80,000 miles or 130,000 kilometers. Strong shoulder construction complements the Aramid-reinforced sidewalls to maximize the tire’s strength"
The new One passenger tire "provides improvements in wet braking and wet handling over Nokian's previous all-season products. Those enhancements are the result of a balanced tread pattern that helps the tire thrive in wet and dry weather alike. A symmetrical, non-directional tread pattern promotes even wear throughout the life of the tire.
"While the tread shape resembles many North American all-season products, it comes with special boosts that provide premium performance. Zig-zag siping in the center rib and shoulder blocks provide stability and improved handling properties.
"Grip enhancers in the circumferential grooves offer dependable traction on soft surfaces like snow, sand and mud. Three-dimensional block supports in the middle ribs give the tire biting edges that help grip the road in winter, and the Nokian Tyres One features high-volume water pockets throughout the tire that resist hydroplaning."
The tire's tread compound also has been designed to minimize rolling resistance. (Nokian says that 90% of its products "are in the three lowest rolling resistance categories.") And its tread pattern has been engineered to reduce road noise by a substantial amount.
Nokian officials revealed that the new tire underwent a pilot program at Plaza Tire Service Inc., one of the largest independent tire dealerships in the United States, with stores throughout Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas and Kentucky.
Mark and Scott Rhodes, the brothers who own and operate Plaza Tire, were the winners of Modern Tire Dealer's Tire Dealer of the Year Award in 2017.
Nokian provided Plaza Tire with some of the earliest Nokian One passenger tires made at the company's Tennessee plant, said Hans Dyrhman, the tire manufacturer's director of marketing.
Feedback from Plaza Tire and the dealership's customers proved to be "invaluable," he added.