Firestone introduces new farm tire technology

Firestone brand agricultural tires has unveiled a new class of farm tires for today’s larger, heavier machinery.

The new line of Firestone farm tires features Advanced Deflection Design (AD2) technology, which allows greater sidewall flexibility. The tires meet the North American Tire and Rim Association’s Increased Flexion (IF) standard.

Compared with standard Firestone radials, Firestone tires with AD2 technology can carry heavier loads at the same pressure, or the same load at lower pressures.

That’s important for farmers as they continue to operate larger, higher horsepower equipment, according to Tom Rodgers, director of marketing for Bridgestone Americas Agricultural Group, which produces Firestone farm tires.

“Tractors continue to increase in size and power. These large, higher-horsepower machines require more ballast to put that increased power to the ground,” said Rodgers. “Tire performance needs to grow with the equipment, and the Firestone brand is introducing this new tire technology to meet that need.”

The tires with AD2 technology are built at the Firestone brand farm tire headquarters and production plant in Des Moines, Iowa. “These tires are the first American-made tractor tires to achieve the IF designation,” Rodgers noted.

Compared with standard Firestone radials, tires built with the AD2 technology will offer several advantages to farmers. Because of their unique construction, tires with AD2 technology can carry a load up to 20 percent greater than standard radials of the same size.

“That means the operator can carry heavier loads or add ballast to a tractor without having to raise air pressure in the tires,” Rodgers explained.

“Alternatively, they can carry the same weight at lower inflation pressures to reduce soil compaction.”

Tires with the AD2 technology have a footprint that also is larger than that of a same-size standard radial. The larger footprint improves traction to help reduce both field time and fuel consumption, while also reducing soil compaction.

“Our AD2 technology makes these improvements possible without compromising endurance or service life,” Rodgers noted. “And, the tire’s greater sidewall flexibility also improves operator comfort.”

The first Firestone farm tires with AD2 technology will be available during the first quarter of 2010 through Certified Firestone Farm Tire Dealers and as options from major tractor manufacturers.

The tires will come in five sizes, two for front-axle applications on MFWD tractors and three drive tires for MFWD and both axles on 4WD machines:

• IF420/85R34 – Row Crop Tractor Front

• IF600/70R30 – Row Crop Tractor Front

• IF480/80R50 – Row Crop Tractor Rear, 4WD Tractor Tire

• IF710/70R38 – Row Crop Tractor Rear, 4WD Tractor Tire

• F710/70R42 – Row Crop Tractor Rear, 4WD Tractor Tire

“Standard radial tires such as the 710/70R38 have been used on larger 4WD tractors for over a decade,” Rodgers noted. “Farmers who are ready to replace tires on those machines definitely should consider the Firestone IF tires before they make their selection.”

Rodgers said additional tire sizes with AD2 technology will be rolled out over the next year.

“In the future, as we introduce new, larger tires for tractors, they will be available only in the AD2 technology. While it will be several years before these advanced tires become common on American farms, we see their introduction as a demonstration of Firestone farm tires’ continuing commitment to innovation that helps farmers improve productivity,” Rodgers said.

More information about the Firestone line of tires with AD2 technology is available from Certified Firestone Farm Tire Dealers and on the Web at http://www.firestoneag.com.

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