“Light truck remains the beacon. It remains the future. It’s very bright.”
With those words, Steve Hutchinson, consultant/advisor for Federal Tire North America LLC, introduced the Xplora R/T to the company’s U.S. and Canadian distributors in Big Bear, Calif.
The latest tire to Federal’s light truck lineup fits between the traditional all-terrain tire (some off-road limitations) and the mud-terrain tire (less on-road comfort), says Hutchinson, who added it is the answer to the following questions from pickup enthusiasts:
- “I prefer an off-road M/T tire, yet without the traditional trade-offs of noisy tires or harsh rides.”
- “I’m looking for an enhanced level of all surface performance and high mileage without extra dimes.”
- “I am customizing my 4x4 and looking for tires that give it more rugged and beastly looks. Do you have that?”
- “I do a lot of all around driving and like to go off-road regularly. To what extent can your R/T handle?”
Federal says the Xplora R/T tread features include:
- technologically advanced computer modeling for optimized tread pitch variation; perfectly placed tread sipes; and tread block alignment that greatly reduces noise, providing a more “civilized,” comfortable, smooth, and quiet ride.
- stone ejectors and an enhanced fatigue resistant compound that protect the tire from chips/cuts/rocks/other debris, “ensuring long life of the tire by preventing early failure due to off-road use.”
- open shoulder grooves engineered “to keep the tire self-cleaning, evacuating water/mud/dirt/off-road debris. “They also provide “confident traction in any condition.”
- linear center tread blocks that enhance on-road straight line stability “for excellent and more predictable handling with easy ride comfort.”
In addition, Federal says the “extra strong sidewall design provides superior off-road traction, protection from cuts and chips.”The Xplora R/T tread is designed with stone ejectors that help prevent stone retention and increase the life of the tire.
The Xplora R/T is available in five 10-ply, Q-rated sizes: 35x12.50R17LT 125Q; 37x12.50R17LT 129Q; 35x12.50R18LT 123Q; 33x12.50R20LT 114Q; and 35x12.50R20LT 121Q. Another 10 sizes will be added soon. They are:
15-inch (1): 31x10.50R15LT 109Q 6-ply.
16-inch (4 10-ply): LT235/85R16 120/116Q; LT245/75R16 120/116Q; LT265/75R16 123/120Q; LT285/75R16 126/123Q.
17-inch (2 10-ply): LT265/70R17 121/118Q; LT285/70R17 121/118Q.
18-inch (2 10-ply): LT275/65R18 123/120Q; LT275/70R18 125/122Q.
20-inch (1 10-ply): LT275/65R20 126/123Q.
Jamie Ma, chairman and CEO of Federal Tire North America’s parent company, Federal Inc., said 22-inch sizes in the R/T will be available at this time next year. The production of even larger sizes will, at the very least, be determined by what other R/T tire manufacturers make available.
Vehicle applications include the Chevrolet Silverado/Colorado Series; Ford F-Series; GMC Canyon/Sierra Series; Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee/Wrangler; Nissan Frontier/Titan; Ram Pickup; and Toyota Tacoma/Tundra.