Tyre and emo­tional re­sponse

Af­ter 15 years there is a new All Rounder, writes PAULGOVER

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News -

AF­TER 15 years, one of the longestrun­ning mod­els in Aus­tralia’s mo­tor­ing his­tory has had a com­plete re­newal. But it’s not a car. It’s a tyre. The Bob Jane All Rounder is a lo­cal cre­ation of the for­mer race ace and is now a gen­uine all-Aussie prod­uct made by Bridge­stone at its fac­tory in Ade­laide.

The ar­rival of the latest All Rounder, ac­cord­ing to Bob Jane T-Marts chief Rod Jane, is proof Aus­tralia can still de­sign, de­velop and make a suc­cess­ful tyre de­spite the clo­sure of all but one of the coun­try’s tyre-mak­ing fac­to­ries.

‘‘It’s a great story for Aus­tralia. We’ve sold more than seven mil­lion,’’ Jane says.

The All Rounder was the first pri­vate­brand tyre for the T-Marts chain and was orig­i­nally made by Goodyear. It was sold more on price and dura­bil­ity than grip or good looks.

But that has changed, de­spite the em­pha­sis on value.

‘‘We wanted a tyre that pro­moted what we are all about — a good, all-round prod­uct,’’ Jane says. ‘‘It is fun­da­men­tally de­signed by Bridge­stone, who does the cas­ing and tread, and we dis­cuss what we want. The All Rounder has al­ways had good wear, but we also wanted a tyre that would stop bet­ter in wet and dry con­di­tions. It han­dles a lot bet­ter. The con­trol is awe­some. The old tyre was old tech­nol­ogy — more than 15 years old.’’

The new All Rounder comes in 23 sizes from 13 to 17-inch di­am­e­ter and is claimed to be a huge im­prove­ment on the out­go­ing All Rounder, yet still priced be­low its ri­vals.

‘‘Tell me how many peo­ple look at their tyres. It’s a grudge pur­chase,’’ Jane says. ‘‘Nearly 98 per cent of peo­ple have no idea and don’t re­ally care. It’s the big­gest thing we have to strug­gle with.’’

Roll up: Rod Jane with the new All Rounder tyre.

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