How Continental Is Evolving Into Complete Tire Management

How Continental Is Evolving Into Full Tire Administration

Continental’s Trey Thompson demonstrates the ContiConnect system. (Connor D. Wolf/Transport Subjects)

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UVALDE, Texas — Whereas the corporate is understood largely as a tire producer, Continental careworn that the majority of its enterprise is technology-focused, and showcased throughout a current occasion how the 2 areas are intersecting throughout its product portfolio.

“Lots of people, they solely know Continental tires as a result of that’s our main aftermarket product,” mentioned Trey Thompson, area engineering supervisor at Continental, through the ContiXperience occasion the corporate hosted June 20 at its proving grounds right here. The occasion supplied media a firsthand view of how Continental has developed its service choices in an effort to turn into an end-to-end built-in service supplier for tires.

Central to that plan is the corporate’s Imaginative and prescient 2030 strategic marketing strategy, which is targeted on driving worthwhile progress via a scientific customer-centric method. On the buyer stage, meaning offering providers for your complete life cycle of the tire, from promoting the product to digital monitoring and retreading.

The ContiConnect system is the principle focus of this built-in method. The service incorporates sensors gathering knowledge from contained in the tires, which is then forwarded to an in-cabin unit. The info is then transmitted to the online portal in actual time to be examined so it will probably ship alerts and show tendencies.

“Continental is a know-how firm — a car know-how firm,” Thompson mentioned, noting that the tire enterprise is lower than 30% of what the corporate does regardless of tires being the principle customer-facing product. “Now we have that know-how, and we’ve got the individuals and the engineers to develop these form of merchandise. That led us to growing a tire monitoring system particularly for industrial autos.” Thompson famous the corporate has lengthy supplied tire strain monitoring for passenger autos and light-weight vans.

In more moderen years, nonetheless, it has been branching out on the industrial aspect and angling to supply improved digital help, mentioned Shaun Uys, U.S. market supervisor of business car tires.

“We began solely with tire choices,” mentioned Uys. “[What] we’re shifting in the direction of is a whole answer supplier [where] you may monitor your tires — you’ve bought a 360-degree service that units round it — and we’re a whole built-in supplier for the fleets across the tire and the tire course of.”

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He continued, “I’ve at all times mentioned there’s 4 pillars that sit inside our technique. You might have tires; you could have the providers that go round it like emergency roadside and assembly with the fleets as a way to get them again and working; you’ve bought retreads, which is certainly a key setting; and the brand new child on the block now, that everyone is working round, is that this digital options method as a way to have 24-7 monitoring.”

From there, Thompson careworn that correct motion by fleets results in optimum tire administration, longer tire life, decrease general prices and extra environment friendly operations. With sensor monitoring, fleets can know what is going on with a tire, akin to whether or not it’s correctly inflated.

“The aim of digital tire monitoring is to establish points with tires earlier than they turn into a serious downside,” he mentioned. “Then there needs to be motion on the a part of the fleet or the supplier. We will solely accomplish that a lot. Via our programs we will monitor the tires, we will inform the fleet what’s happening with the tires, however anyone has bought to do one thing.”

Monitoring the online portal obtainable via the corporate’s product suite presents fleets visibility to assist forestall main issues.

“The online portal [is] the place the whole lot occurs,” Thompson mentioned. “That’s the place we’re going to generate notifications for the shopper, that’s the place we’re going to gather historic data in order that they’ll return and do a deep dive and analyze what’s happening in order that they aren’t simply combating fires. All of that is essential to get to there.”

Thompson added the notifications from the online portal may be damaged down into pink alerts for points needing rapid help and yellow alerts for one thing that may turn into a direct downside later. However he warned that many fleets with tire monitoring programs solely react to the rapid risks.

“Lots of fleets by no means transfer previous that,” Thompson mentioned. “They only keep in that mode the place, ‘Once I get a pink alert, I’m going to react, however till I get a pink alert I’m not going to do something.’ Virtually each a type of reds had been a yellow that didn’t get addressed.”

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