The Southeast Asian region loves SUVs. Last year, about 19% of new cars sold in this part of the globe are sport-utility vehicles. In the Philippine market, this figure is much bigger: 30% of vehicles that rolled out of showrooms last year were SUVs.
Perhaps to take advantage of the SUV tire market, which is expected to grow by 3% in the next five years, Michelin has launched the new Primacy SUV tire in the Philippines. Specifically designed for Southeast Asia, this tire is said to feature shorter braking distance on wet and dry roads, and better grip.
According to Michelin East Asia and Oceania product marketing manager Pierre Azemat, the new tire's wet-braking distance is shorter by 2.2m compared to Michelin's previous-generation SUV tire. Dry-braking distance is said to be 1.5m shorter, too.
How did Michelin do this? Well, for one, it claims to spend about 650 million euros (P35 billion) every year on R&D to improve its products. By having more rubber surface in contact with the road and optimizing the tire's tread pattern, the Primacy SUV tire is able to achieve better braking-distance figures.
Michelin's latest Primacy SUV tire also touts the "Total Performance" badge, which promises customers that the tire is both durable and safe. When asked about pricing details, the executives only revealed that the new tire has a "competitive" price tag starting at "about P11,000 each."
Photos by Tracy Carpena