Tire market to experience significant change with move toward autonomous vehicles

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A new report from Smithers, The Impact of Autonomous Vehicles in Tires to 2029, calls for the automotive industry to shift from selling and servicing vehicles to a mobility industry that offers transportation solutions for people and goods. Electrification, autonomous vehicle technology and shared mobility are key to this shift as is the evolution of tire development.

There are significant hurdles to be overcome before full AVs can be widely adopted. These vehicles will make up a relatively small part of new vehicle sales, and an even smaller part of the global vehicle parc by 2029. Small shuttles, delivery vans and truck platooning are possible exceptions. In relation, the number of tires supplied for AV vehicles by 2029 will be small and predominately OE. These units are forecast to reach around 389 million (AV PC /LT/LCV + T&B) at a value of over $47 billion by 2029, reaching about 15% of the predicted PC/LT/LCV + T&B tire market volume in 2029.

AVs and tires types

Debate exits over whether AVs will advance the use of extended mobility tires and if so, which option – run-flat or selfsealing – will be used. Smithers conducted a survey that revealed mixed expectations from industry respondents. A significant number believe that more careful tire use by AVs will reduce failure and decrease the need for extended mobility solutions. While not essential for AVs, non-pneumatic tires are puncture proof and offer extended mobility and less maintenance. They may benefit AVs used in urban environments, especially autonomous taxi fleets.

A collaboration between GM and Michelin is planning to begin commercial sales of an electric car with an airless tire (Uptis which is a development of Michelin’s Tweel) by 2024 and with a fully autonomous version to follow. If successful, these moves will eventually have a major impact on tire technology, including materials, construction methods and equipment and after-sales service.

Regional trends in AV uptake

The penetration of EV and AV technologies will vary significantly between regions as political considerations play a strong role in introducing the necessary legislation. The relatively light regulatory environment in some states and the entrepreneurial culture in the US is expected to help. AV uptake in Europe may be hindered by the region’s strong regulatory nature. Customer acceptance varies greatly by geographical location and age: Markets such as China and India where car ownership is growing show more enthusiasm about using self-driving cars. Similarly, Millennials are more likely to embrace new technologies, including connected cars to fully autonomous vehicles.

The Smithers survey found that uptake of level 4–5 AV for PC/LT/LCV was expected to be North America>Europe>Asia Pacific. For trucks and buses, the order was predicted as Europe>North America>Asia Pacific. The higher rating for Europe T&B was due to the region’s interest in platooning. While all propulsion systems can be used, most AVs are expected to be electric. Not only do EVs provide significant synergies to AV, environmental concerns are leading to their adoption irrespective of AVs.

Tire sales for AVs to 2029

Because of the relatively small vehicle numbers, tires sales for AVs are expected to be a small part of the overall tire market by 2029 with OE sales dominating over replacement sales. Vehicle sectors in this report are differentiated into passenger car/LT/LCVs and T&B. Smithers was unable to quantify the passenger car and LT/LCV separately, but believe that LT/LCVs will be a relatively small part of the total. These are further differentiated into OE and replacement markets. The difference between OE and replacement markets is most pronounced in the PC/LT/LCVs tire sectors. See Figures E1 and E2.

 

 

Most survey respondents think the overall AV market (PC/LT/LCV + T&B level 2–5) will have most impact on AV tire materials/components and AV tire retail and AV tire marketing over the next 10 years. They rated the impact on these sectors as very high or high. AV tire materials/components is seen as the tire market sector that experiences the most innovation and change and generally moves forward faster than the other tire market sectors. 

To learn more about this report, download the brochure at https://www.smithers.com/services/market-reports/transportation/impact-autonomous-vehicles-on-tires-to-2029.

Autonomous Vehicles: Holy Grail or Poisoned Chalice?

The quest for autonomous vehicle technology has no shortage of eager participants. In recent years, startups and established businesses alike have poured billions of dollars into developing a host of technologies that will, hopefully, one day unlock the secrets of level five autonomy, i.e., self-driving cars that are better and safer than human drivers in all conditions.

 

Read the source article at Value Investing

U.S. military working to make its self-driving technology smarter

Keeping soldiers safe continues to be the main reason the military enlists unmanned vehicles into its ranks, especially for resupply missions.

The U.S. Army has been tinkering with ground robotics and automated technologies for decades, yet there are still no real systems in the military field that are fully autonomous.

Nevertheless, the Army wants to finish what it started, so it plans to accelerate its use of autonomous defense technologies.

Read the source article at Automotive News Europe

Whole Lotta Shaking Going on in Auto Industry

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It’s already been an eventful year for the automotive industry. Let’s review some of the biggest trends and headlines we’ve seen so far and consider what the future might hold.

Shake-Ups and Industry Disruptors

We can’t discuss the industry in 2019 without mentioning tariffs, so let’s start there.

The U.S. and China have made a lot of noise by threatening to impose new or raise existing tariffs on automobiles. The potential of higher costs is affecting factories worldwide, and the situation is made more complex by the fact that many auto makers have plants in countries other than their home base (for example, GM builds cars in China; BMW in the U.S.; VW in Mexico).

Read the source article at WardsAuto

Continental’s self-driving chief sees full autonomy taking time

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HANOVER, Germany — The first fully autonomous vehicles able to handle all conditions on public roads — and potentially replacing private car ownership, will probably not appear until after 2030, said Continental’s head of self-driving car projects, Andree Hohm. “People always ask me when driverless vehicles will be on the road,” he said this month at Continent’s Tech Show in Hanover, “and I tell them the answer is ‘today.’

Read the source article at Automotive News Europe

Nexen Tire in technology partnership with Plug and Play

Nexen Tire has entered into a partnership with Plug and Play, an innovation platform and startup accelerator, as a part of its effort to build an infrastructure for future technology development and new business initiation.

Through the collaboration with Plug and Play, Nexen Tire will look to develop tire and mobility technologies. It will also enable the company to realize its open R&D philosophy and explore other potential partnerships in the tire industry.

Read the source article at Tire Technology International

This Robot Will Make Any Car a Self-Driving Car

It may not be the future we want, but it’s undeniable that autonomous vehicles are coming. In the not too distant future, car and driver will become one and the same, and the cars we drive ourselves will eventually be replaced with those that drive themselves. But does that mean every car and truck on the road will need to be replaced with specially designed autonomous vehicles? Israeli startup IVObility has a better idea.

Read the source article at Car Reviews

Goodyear to pilot predictive tire servicing solution with EV fleets

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Goodyear Tire is partnering with Borrow, a short-term, fully electric car subscription company in California to test its newest service innovation.

Goodyear is using its unique predictive tire servicing solution for Borrow’s connected fleets to forecast and automatically schedule needed tire maintenance and replacement. Leveraging Goodyear’s expertise in tires, the cloud-based platform predicts and automatically schedules tire servicing via vehicle data and proprietary algorithms.

Read the source article at Traction News

Semi-autonomous and always available: A peek into the near future of car rental

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The here and now is all about “connected cars.” But the question you may ask is, “connected to what?” A connected car is only as valuable or useful as what it’s connected to, and today that’s not much beyond a cell phone, mobile road service, or garage door opener.

Read the source article at Digital Trends

Technology: Sumitomo preparing for fully-automated driving

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Maebashi, Japan – Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. (SRI) has started a joint research project with the aim of developing tire-related services for ‘level 4’ fully-automated vehicles in Japan.

The partnership is with Gunma University Centre of Research on Adoption of NextGen Transportation Systems (CRANTS), which is working on self-driving vehicles in collaboration with the Japanese private sector.

Read the source article at European Rubber Journal