Plant Produces Half a Billion BFGoodrich Tires in 75 Years
Michelin North America Inc. is marking 75 years of BFGoodrich tire production in Tuscaloosa, Ala. The plant has produced more than 500 million tires since the first one rolled off the line.
The plant, which spans more than 1.6 million square feet, has a hold on lots of historic moments for the money and tire industry as a whole:
- First tubeless tire in the U.S.;
- First American-manufactured passenger car tire certified for racing, the BFGoodrich Radial T/A;
- First radial light-truck all-terrain and mud-terrain tire ever produced;
- First tires for NASA’s space shuttle; and
- First purpose-built off-road radial desert race tire, the BFGoodrich Baja T/A.
“Our BFGoodrich facility in Tuscaloosa has been on the leading edge of tire innovation and performance for decades,” says Harold Phillips, global general manager for the BFGoodrich brand. “We’re proud to celebrate the dedication of the employees in Tuscaloosa who are responsible for producing some of the most iconic tires ever made for racing, recreation and passenger vehicles.”
The Tuscaloosa plant employs 1,400 people and not only manufactures passenger and light truck tires, but also produces semi-finished materials, such as uncured rubber and associated materials needed for tire construction.
“Our 75 years in Tuscaloosa is not only a testament to the dedication of our employees, but it also shows the support of our community and government partners that help us deliver top-quality products for the North American marketplace,” says Brent McCorkle, plant manager.
The 500 million BFGoodrich-brand tires built in Tuscaloosa are capable of equipping more than 122 million vehicles over the last 70-plus years. Michelin acquired BFGoodrich in 1990.
The plant also has produced competition tires, including the first street-legal drag-racing tire, the first street radial tire to compete at the storied 24 Hours of Le Mans in France, the first passenger-car tire to defeat pure race tires, and a total of 98 overall wins in the SCORE International racing series.