Kenda Introduces the Klever A/T2 in Las Vegas

Jan. 24, 2020

Kenda USA introduced its latest light truck tire during Automotive Aftermarket Industry Week in Las Vegas in November. The Klever A/T2 KR628 features “Tier 1 quality at a top Tier 3 price,” said Jimmy Yang, president of American Kenda Rubber Ind. Co. Ltd. Yang is also chairman of Kenda’s parent company in Taiwan.

The Klever A/T2 was developed at Kenda’s technical center in Green, Ohio. Tom Williams, vice president of the technical center and the tech group, says the engineers performed computer modeling on every size — not just one prototype — to make sure every size met the needs of both consumers and Kenda dealers.

The tire will be available early next summer in 40 passenger and LT sizes (see sidebar below).

Brandon Stotsenburg, Kenda USA’s vice president of automotive sales, said the all-terrain segment has expanded. “When we introduced the Klever R/T tire a couple of years ago, we felt the market was showing a real need for an extreme A/T product with an aggressive off-road look, a tire that could really perform as an M/T tire traditionally would, but also ride relatively smooth and quiet on-road.

“We learned from some of the aesthetic cues of the R/T, and (incorporated) them into the A/T2 tread pattern, which is why there are a lot of similarities when you look at the two treads. We also synched up their size lineups. Together, the A/T2 and the R/T have a very complete size lineup that will match what the market is looking for, relative to the performance in those areas.”For off-road enthusiasts, the Klever A/T2 is engineered with an aggressive upper sidewall that protects against cuts, tears and abrasion. In addition, a large number of biting edges offer aggressive performance on all types of terrains. For winter driving conditions, the tire features an all-weather compound and a high-sipe density for biting edges on snow and ice. It also has 3-Peak Mountain Snowflake certification.

Kenda is backing the tire, which will be produced in Kenda’s new consumer tire plant in Vietnam, with a 50,000-mile limited tread wear warranty for LT sizes and 60,000-mile warranty for P-metric and metric fitments.

Yang said the Vietnam plant will be able to produce 6 million tires annually by the end of 2020.

Kenda also has a tire plant in Taiwan (annual capacity of 1.5 million) and two in China (annual capacity of 7 million). Because of U.S. tariffs on Chinese tire imports, tires manufactured in China are targeted for other parts of the world.

After the Vietnam plants reaches its annual capacity of 6 million tires, Yang said planning for the next phase of expansion will begin. Kenda still has room to add capacity, maybe even TBR production, at the facility. “Growth is always the ultimate goal for Kenda.”    ■

Sizing up the Klever A/T2

The new Kenda Klever A/T2 KR628 initially will be launched in 40 sizes next summer. The lineup consists of 22 P-metric/metric sizes, 17 LT Load Range E sizes and one flotation LRC size, 33x12.50R15.

15-inch (2): 235/75R15 109T XL, 33x12.50R15 LRC.

16-inch (11): 235/70R16 109T XL, 245/70R16 107T, 245/75R16 111T XL, 255/70R16 115T XL, 265/70R16 112T, 265/75R16 116T, LT225/75R16, LT235/85R16, LT245/75R16, LT265/75R16, LT285/75R16.

17-inch (13): 235/75R17 109T, 245/65R17 111T XL, 245/70R17 114T XL, 255/70R17 112T, 255/75R17 115T, 265/65R17 116T XL, 265/70R17 115T, P285/70R17 117T, LT235/80R17, LT245/70R17, LT265/70R17, LT285/70R17, LT315/70R17.

18-inch (9): 255/70R18 113T, 265/60R18 114T XL, 265/65R18 114T, 265/70R18 116T, 275/65R18 116T, LT265/70R18, LT275/65R18, LT275/70R18, LT285/65R18.

20-inch (5): 275/55R20 117T XL, 275/60R20 115T, LT265/60R20, LT275/60R20, LT275/65R20.

Brandon Stotsenburg, vice president of automotive sales for Kenda USA, says the Klever A/T2 will replace the Klever A/T, introduced in 2012, in almost all sizes. The A/T will remain available “in a few older sizes.”

About the Author

Bob Ulrich

Bob Ulrich was named Modern Tire Dealer editor in August 2000 and retired in January 2020. He joined the magazine in 1985 as assistant editor, and had been responsible for gathering statistical information for MTD's "Facts Issue" since 1993. He won numerous awards for editorial and feature writing, including five gold medals from the International Automotive Media Association. Bob earned a B.A. in English literature from Ohio Northern University and has a law degree from the University of Akron.

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