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Michelin, Pirelli = top passenger tires

Since there always seems to be a lot of discussion regarding tires on this
list, I thought y'all might find this interesting. It's a bit long, so if
you're in a rush, hit "Delete" or "Control - D" now!!

	 AGOURA HILLS, Calif., Aug 19 (Reuter) - Michelin and  
Pirelli tires tied for the ``best overall'' rating in a survey 
that rates consumers' satisfaction with the tires that come 
with their cars, a research firm said Monday. 
	 J.D. Power and Associates, an influential automotive  
consulting and market research firm, surveyed 15,347 people 
who have owned or leased their cars or light trucks for one 
year. The survey mainly included the 1995 model year, Power 
	 ``The performance of original equipment tires is critical,''  
said Lee Nauert, manager of tire research at J.D. Power. ``Over 
70 percent of consumers agree that the tire brand on their new 
cars and light trucks is very important.'' 
	 Nearly 10 percent of consumers replace tires within the  
first year, usually due to road hazards or wear, he said. 
About 40 percent of them switch brands, seeking better 
mileage, traction and handling. 
	 French firm Michelin was also rated best in the light  
truck category, followed closely by Japan's Bridgestone Corp., 
the research firm said. 
	 Michelin and Italian-based Pirelli SpA have done well in  
previous studies in the passenger category, which includes 
cars and compact vans -- vehicles whose appeal includes smooth 
ride and comfort on long trips, Power said. 
	 ``A stellar performance is also exhibited by Continental  
Tire (made by German-based Continental AG) which ranks third'' 
among the 12 passenger brands in the survey, Power said. 
	 BFGoodrich tires, made by Michelin, came in fourth in the  
passenger category. The U.S. company named BFGoodrich sold its 
tire operations years ago and is now a chemical and aircraft 
systems company. 
	 The light truck category includes vehicles with  
heavier-duty requirements -- full-size and compact sport 
utility vehicles, full-size and compact pickup trucks and 
full-size vans, Power said. 
	 Michelin moved up from second place in the light truck  
category from last year, but the 1995 top rated brand, 
Yokohama, from Japan's Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd., was not 
ranked this year due to insufficient sample size, Power said. 
	 Of eight light truck tire brands, Bridgestone's Firestone  
brand came in third, and U.S.-based Goodyear Tire & Rubber 
Co.'s Goodyear brand tires ranked fourth, Power said. 
	 Consumers were were questioned about brand awareness,  
loyalty, product quality and performance in the survey, Power 
	 Those who expressed the highest satisfaction with their  
tires were drivers of full-size and luxury cars. 
	 ``Many of these are older respondents who may remember  
tires that did not perform nearly as well as today's 
higher-tech lines,'' Power said. 
	 Consumers who expressed the most satisfaction with their  
tires were owners of Acura, Buick, BMW, Cadillac, Chrysler, 
Jaguar, Lexus, Land Rover, Lincoln and Mercedes-Benz vehicles, 
the survey showed. 
	 The lowest satisfaction levels were reported by owners of  
compact cars and full-size pickup trucks. 
	 This was the eighth year J.D. Power and Associates has  
done the Original Equipment Tire Satisfaction study.


                      Jim Griffin
                Maryland, USA
                  Quattro List Info:
                        '92 100S
          Titanium Grey/Black Leather
         A               U       D            I
         ccelerate   ntil    eath is   mminent

    "Perception is often stronger than reality!"