by Steve Theunissen
Falken tires are a brand leader in high performance consumer and motor sports tires. The name Falken comes from the German language and means Falcon, reflecting the speed and grace of that magnificent bird. The name was selected from many suggested by employees of the parent company, The Ohtsu Tire and Rubber Company in Osaka, Japan. The first Falken tire was introduced in 1983 – the FK06C/FX07A. This tire had many novel features and aggressive driving performance. In 1985, Ohtsu began exporting Falken tires around the world from their manufacturing plant in Japan. Five years later the Falken Tire Corporation was established. The main objective of this new entity was to aggressively market Falken tires in the US market place.
In 1993 Falken Tires took a huge step forward with the development of their first top class high performance tire, the GRB. Three years later, Falken further refined the tire industry with a more streamlined tread design. This design was aggressively marketed to the 18 -24 market under the concepts of “youth”. “cool” and “sport comfort.”
In 1999 Falken Tires joined the Nurburgring 24 hour motor race. The race was viewed as an opportunity to showcase the aggressive driving performance that the company had been developing over the years to an audience of thousands of hardcore racing fans. Their flagship VHP tire, the FK451, was a great success with outstanding performance in the wet.
In the summer of 2002, Falken Tires underwent a major new branding project. The concept of the Falken (Falcon) was confirmed with the accompanying slogans, “Driving pleasure as you like,” and “Driving Inspiration.”
Consumer Tires – Summer
Falken tires that are produced for the general consumer are divided into Summer and Winter ranges. These tires are developed using technology that has been directly adapted from the world of motor racing. They place an emphasis on providing maximum comfort, driving enjoyment and safety under diverse driving conditions. Falken tires flagship high performance tire of the moment is the FK-451. This tire features a new silica tread compound. The effect of this new technology is improved gripping in the wet and greater wear resistance. The FK-451 also features a dual tread compound, which allows for greater handling stability. This tire also features stiffer sidewall construction due to the high tension carcass and high turn up.
Consumer Tires – Winter
Falken tires have faced the challenge of creating a quality winter tire with relish. As a result they have created winter tires that stand up to even the harshest conditions that mother nature can dish out. Falken tires Eurowinter range of tires provide outstanding grip in snow and rain, a modern directional profile with quality performance that can be relied upon and an innovative silica compounded rubber construction.
Falken also produce 4 x 4 off-road tires that provide a smooth, reliable ride in even the most challenging of off-road conditions. In addition, Falken tires produce tires for trucks and busses. The development of Falken tires for trucks and busses has two essential underlying goals – safety and durability. The innovative tread compound used on all Falken tires evens out tread wear among the tires, even under the heaviest of loads. All Falken tires for trucks and busses also feature an extra chunky tread, which further increases durability.
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