SEMA News—February 2020


By Douglas McColloch

Global Tire Expo 2019

TIA Announces New Programs and Partnerships for 2020

Global Tire Expo
The Tire Industry Association (TIA) consists of more than 13,000 members representing more than 40 countries worldwide. More than 150 companies were represented at the Global Tire Expo during the 2019 SEMA Show.

TIA is a nonprofit organization, and its mission is to promote tire safety through education and training, to act as the tire industry’s principal advocate in legislative affairs, and to represent the industry at public and industry events such as the SEMA Show. TIA offers training and certification courses in automotive, commercial, earthmover and farm tire service, and more than 150,000 technicians have completed TIA coursework to date.

At the 2019 SEMA Show, TIA announced a new educational initiative for Automotive Tire Service (ATS), a 100-Level Intro to ATS online university program aimed at educating non-technicians such as salespersons in retail stores. The program commences in 2020, the organization’s centennial year.

“There are a lot of people in the tire industry who need an introduction to passenger and light-truck tire service even though they do not change tires,” said Brian Rigney, TIA president. “Intro to ATS gives them the background information they need to understand the basic guidelines and procedures for servicing automotive tire assemblies.”

The new program consists of five courses or modules: passenger and light-truck tires; passenger and light-truck rims, wheels and hubs; passenger and light-truck tire service; TPMS; and sales. All modules offer broad overviews rather than detailed instructions, and the sales module is focused on general principles of selling a tire to assist sales pros when working with prospective customers. The goal is to help non-technicians gain a better understanding of passenger and light-truck tire service to drive additional sales and improve customer
retention rates.

“We’ve noticed an educational gap in the industry, where promises made at the sales counter cannot be fulfilled in the shop,” said Kevin Rohlwing, TIA senior vice president of training. “Intro to ATS bridges that gap so sales and office personnel have the same foundational training as technicians, which ultimately will result in better customer service and increased productivity.”

Global Tire Expo
The Global Tire Expo hosts numerous hands-on technical demonstrations throughout the week of the SEMA Show, such as this one at the Hunter Engineering booth.

TIA also announced the start of a similar 100-Level program for Commercial Tire Service (CTS).

“Intro to CTS is actually a combination of the commercial, earthmover, farm and industrial tire programs,” Rigney said, “so non-technicians understand the basic terminology, applications and service requirements for a wide range of tires and wheels.”

Additionally, TIA announced a new partnership with the Tread Rubber and Tire Repair Materials Group (TRMG) to make TRMG retread and repair documentation available for download on TIA’s website.

“Part of our mission is to improve safety through training and education, so this partnership with TRMG is consistent with the long-term goals of TIA,” Rohlwing said. “TIA’s retreader members will now have instant access to a wide range of educational and training materials they can use to improve their products and processes.”

Finally, TIA announced plans for an upcoming environmental conference in Washington, D.C. The event, presented in conjunction with TIA’s Environmental Advisory Council, will be devoted to reviewing environmental issues as they affect the tire industry and to promote sustainable best practices across all industry sectors. The conference is tentatively scheduled for April 2020.

Global Tire Expo—Powered by TIA—was created in 1997 as a result of a merger of the International Tire Expo and the SEMA Show, and since then it has grown into one of the world’s largest tire expositions under the direction of the Tire Industry Association (TIA). At the 2019 SEMA Show, the Expo hosted an annual membership meeting, a welcome reception and awards ceremony, and an annual media event to announce new projects and initiatives for the coming year.

Global Tire Expo
Another growing segment within the global tire market is TPMS—in particular, aftermarket replacement sensors and remote programmers such as these units displayed at the Schrader booth at the 2019 SEMA Show.
Global Tire Expo
Commercial OTR (off-the-road) tires for earthmovers, farm and commercial equipment are prominent players at Global Tire Expo. Worldwide sales in this segment are forecast to increase from $5.5 billion in 2018 to more than $8 billion in 2026.
Global Tire Expo
The growth of the UTV market has created opportunities for manufacturers with products specifically designed for the unique demands of those vehicles. We spied these examples at the Greenball booth at the 2019 SEMA Show.
Global Tire Expo
A wheel display at the American Truxx booth at the 2019 SEMA Show. In for 2019: silver, black, matte and polished finishes. Out: loud, flashy colors.

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