Daily News Egypt took the new Ecopia tyres out for a test drive, to see the difference between it and the Bridgestone B250 tyres on a number of cars.
Bridgestone North Arab & Africa and Nile Projects & Trading Company, Bridgestone’s agent in Egypt, announced it is offering the new Ecopia tyres for passenger cars. The tyres reduce fuel consumption through a technique of low rolling resistance.
Ahmed Yehia, Bridgestone’s North Arab & Africa Branch General Manager, told Daily News Egypt that Bridgestone presented the study results, which was conducted by an independent entity in Japan. The study showed that Ecopia tyres lowered fuel consumption by 12% when compared to normal tyres. This, in turn, decreases carbon dioxide emissions from car exhausts to 4%.
Yehia disclosed that Bridgestone plans to offer the new Ecopia tyre for trucks in August, after the first experimental batch is imported.
He added that the decline of subsidy on fuel will be a burden on passenger car and truck owners, and that the new tyre will contribute to easing this burden as well as the environmental burden through lowering carbon dioxide emissions.
“These tyres are manufactured using high-quality raw material, which improves performance on the road and decreases fuel consumption,” added Yehia.
He pointed out that the company manufactured this type of tyres in Japan for the first time in 1990, and have been under development until today.
Bridgestone offered this tyre in Jordan at the end of last year, and proved a great success when it was tested to see the difference in fuel consumption.
Yehia expects the Ecopia tyres will acquire 5% of the tyre market this year and that it will see high demand from the youth, especially that the price will be competitive.
Ecopia tyre will be offered with sizes of 12 to 18 inches, said Yehia.
According to Yehia, Bridgestone owns 20% of the Egyptian tyre market, with G90, 001, AR20, B250, and Ecopia tyre models. Ecopia will replace the B250 tyre model.
In a similar context, Yehia said the company plans to soon open three new centres for Bridgestone in Cairo and Alexandria. The company plans to increase the number of branches to be 35 branches, and it opened two other centres in the Fifth Settlement and New Cairo.
Egypt is one of the heaviest consumers of passenger car tyres and trucks at a volume of $1bn a year. It holds top spot of the countries that consume truck tyres in the Middle East, with a sale volume of more than 1m tyres. The country is ranked second in terms of passenger car consumption, with a volume of 4m to 5m tyres, according to Yehia.
He added that the region does not need a new factory, as it has over 170 factories worldwide, of which 37 factories cover global needs. The international needs on tyres have been witnessing a decline for three years.
As to issuing quality standards for tyres, Yehia said that Bridgestone has been exporting tyres to Egypt as per the European standards since 2010.
The company aims to invest in the Suez Canal axis and build storages and warehouses to store tyres, to provide Egypt with a huge storage capacity for the Middle East and Africa.
Yehia confirmed that Bridgestone plans for storage at the Port of Jebel Ali to cover the Gulf area and for Egypt storages to cover the needs of Africa. He added that the company considers Egypt the main axis and gate for the African market.
The Egyptian automotive market has significantly improved this year compared to 2013, which was reflected on the volume of demand from consumers.