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Published on April 2, 2012

MICHELIN® DEFENDER® TIRE DESIGNED TO KEEP DRIVERS SAFER1, LONGER2 NOW AVAILABLE

GREENVILLE, S.C. (April 2, 2012)Today, the all-new MICHELIN® Defender® tire, the greatest standard passenger car tire the company has ever made, hits the North American market, just in time for spring driving season. Offering a 90,000 mile warranty3, increased safety and greater levels of fuel-efficiency4 than the previous generation, the MICHELIN® Defender® tire marks a significant breakthrough for the standard passenger car tire segment.

“The Defender is the best standard passenger car tire we at Michelin have ever made, delivering tremendous quality and value to our consumers,” said Pete Selleck, chairman and president, Michelin North America. “We listened to the marketplace and realized that American tire buyers are looking for a safe, fuel-efficient tire, with long tread life and excellent value for the money. The Defender tire satisfies these primary consumer needs and enhances the already strong offering of products in the Michelin portfolio.”

In today’s tough economy, many drivers are keeping their cars longer and racking up higher mileage on their vehicles before replacing them.  The Defender tire speaks directly to this consumer behavior by lasting up to 21,000 miles longer than a leading competitor2. That is nearly 1.5 additional years of driving for the average consumer.  

The MICHELIN® Defender® tire is designed for the American family, and fits virtually every standard passenger car and minivan on the road today. It covers 93% of the marketplace and ranges in size from 175/70R13 to a 225/55R18. 

By combining safety, longevity and fuel-efficiency in one high-performing tire, the MICHELIN Defender offers consumers a complete performance package without having to sacrifice one performance for another. 

It also boasts a new technological breakthrough from Michelin called IntelliSipe™ Technology™.  This technology acts as an interlocking mechanism that provides superior stiffness for greater adherence or grip in the contact zone. This technology yields greater fuel-efficiency, longer tread life and increased safety from shorter stopping distances.

  • SAFER: The Defender tire stops up to 31 feet shorter than a leading competitor1, equating to approximately two car lengths.  Through the use of IntelliSipe Technology™, Michelin has been able to optimize the number of sipes within the tire, providing additional grip for assistance in braking confidently. Further adding to its safety features, the Defender tire maintains the same exceptional wet handling as our previous generations, increasing snow traction by 15 percent. 
  • LONGER: Michelin’s  propriety MaxTouchConstruction™ technology features a uniquely shaped contact patch that evenly distributes the forces of acceleration, braking and cornering. This technology enables the tire to wear evenly, and a tire that wears evenly wears longer. In fact, the Defender tire lasts up to 21,000 miles longer than a leading competitor2.
  • FUEL-EFFICIENT: With fuel prices continuing to rise, the MICHELIN® Defender®, marked with MICHELIN’s GREEN X® designation, provides greater fuel-efficiency and a potential savings of up to $250 in fuel @$3.50/gallon over the life of the tires4.

 The MICHELIN Defender tire is backed by the Michelin Promise Plan™, a comprehensive tire service package for MICHELIN tire owners. While other companies offer piecemeal warranty packages, Michelin is the first to provide a comprehensive package, reminding consumers that with Michelin, you get more. The Michelin Promise Plan offers a free 30-day satisfaction guarantee, three-year flat tire changing assistance and additional mileage warranties on the purchase of passenger and light-truck tires.  

Consumers are encouraged to visit the Team Michelin Tire Selector on www.michelinman.com to find a complete listing of MICHELIN Defender tire benefits, sizing information and to research the best tire for their individual needs.  

1 Based on internal wet braking test results versus Goodyear® Assurance® ComforTred® Touring tires size 185/65R15.

2 Based on commissioned third party wear test results versus Continental® Pro Contact™ ECO Plus Technology tire size 215/60R16.

3 90,000-mile warranty for H and T-rated tires; 80,000-mile warranty V-rated tires.  See michelinman.com for details. 

4 Based on fuel efficiency estimates from rolling resistance testing versus the Yokohama® Avid® TRZ 215/60R16 over the warranted 90,000-mile treadlife of the MICHELIN® Defender™ tire. Actual on-road savings may vary.

About Michelin

Dedicated to the improvement of sustainable mobility, Michelin designs, manufactures and sells tires for every type of vehicle, including airplanes, automobiles, bicycles, earthmovers, farm equipment, heavy-duty trucks and motorcycles. The company also publishes travel guides, hotel and restaurant guides, maps and road atlases. Headquartered in Greenville, S.C., Michelin North America (www.michelinman.com) employs more than 22,000 and operates 19 major manufacturing plants in 16 locations in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.