Michelin turf tyre earns John Deere award
MICHELIN Group's Agricultural and Earthmover operating units were recently named a Supplier of the Year as well as a Partner-level supplier for 2014 in the John Deere achieving excellence program. The partner-level status is Deere's highest supplier rating. Suppliers who participate in the achieving excellence program are evaluated annually in key performance categories, including quality, cost management, delivery, technical support and ‘wavelength', which are various measures of responsiveness. John Deere Supply Management created the program in 1991 to provide suppliers with evaluations and feedback that promote continuous improvement. Additionally, Michelin Tweel Technologies received a John Deere supplier innovation award for its The Michelin X Tweel Turf tyre. The award is presented to a select group of suppliers that have demonstrated innovation in a product or service they provide to John Deere. Award selections are based on four factors: creativity, feasibility, collaboration and bottom-line impact. John Deere created the supplier innovation awards in 2010 to promote innovation in the company's supply base and recognize suppliers that think creatively. In 2014, Michelin announced an exclusive partnership with John Deere to equip its ZTRAKTM 900 Series line-up of zero-turn commercial mowers with the ground-breaking Michelin X-Tweel Turf as original equipment to replace a standard 24x12x12 tyre. Emmanuel Ladent, group director of Michelin's agriculture tire division, accepted the Supplier of the Year Award on Michelin Group's behalf during a ceremony hosted by Deere in Bettendorf, Iowa. “Our business teams have worked very hard indeed to establish a spirit of mutual partnership with our associates at John Deere, which has resulted in a strong and growing relationship between our companies,” said Emmanuel LADENT. Michelin delivers products to multiple Deere manufacturing sites globally: Davenport, Iowa; Thibodaux, Louisiana; Waterloo, Iowa; East Moline, Ill.; Des Moines, Iowa; Augusta, Ga.; FuquayVarina, N.C.; Valley City, N.D.; Dubuque, Iowa; Horst, The Netherlands; Mannheim, Germany; Indaiatuba, Brazil; and Zweibrucken, Germany. Meanwhile, in a further sign of cooperation between Michelin and John Deere, seven tractor-driving finalists in the European Drivers Challenge have been invited to the Michelin Technical Innovation Centre Test Circuit in Ladoux, France to demonstrate how best practice can affect tractor performance. Each participant will get his own John Deere 6215R AutoPowr tractor, pulling a heavy 20 tonne Joskin two axle trailer. The tractors will be equipped with Michelin MachXBib tyres, with trailers featuring Michelin CargoXBib High Flotation tyres. The participants will be challenged to select their own strategy of tractor settings and tyre inflation pressures. The seven tractor operators from seven European countries will compete to win the European Drivers Challenge title, each representing their home country, with participants from France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and UK. Unlike traditional motor racing, it's not the tractor operator with the fastest lap who will make it onto the podium. The winner will be the contestant with the best overall strategy to achieve a fast transport time, combined with the lowest possible fuel consumption and the least soil compaction in the field. Furthermore, they will need to complete a handling course along the way too, and ensure they succeed in all objectives without any failures. The range of tasks represents the typical daily challenges that today's contractors constantly face. Time and money matter: that's why it is essential that farmers and contractors use the latest technologies available in order to win the battle of speed, fuel efficiency and soil protection. The European Drivers Challenge has been organised jointly by John Deere and Michelin to demonstrate how the proper understanding of technology by users influences performance both on the road and in the field, even when using highly automated equipment. The event is designed to showcase the key role tyres play in managing difficult terrain with different levels of grip and traction, whilst protecting the soil from compaction and saving on fuel. Located close to Michelin's headquarters, the Michelin Technical Innovation Centre Test Circuit is one of the world's largest vehicle test facilities, made up of 19 tracks totalling more than 41km – typically the exclusive preserve of Michelin research and development engineers testing future generations of tyres.
The award-winning Michelin X Tweel Turf tyre going over a curb.