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Kumho Tire supplies tires for Mercedes-Benz G-Klasse SUV

All Headlines 09:46 January 10, 2019

SEOUL, Jan. 10 (Yonhap) -- Kumho Tire Co., the South Korean unit of Chinese tiremaker Qingdao Doublestar Co., said Thursday it has supplied tires to Mercedes-Benz's all-new G-Klasse SUV.

Kumho Tire has delivered the high-performance Solus KL21 tires for the new G-Klasse SUV in the form of original equipment (OE) tires since May 2018, the company said in a statement.

Kumho Tire supplies tires for Mercedes-Benz G-Klasse SUV - 1

"The company had supplied OE tires to the previous version of the G-Klasse SUV, and it continues to provide tires to the all-new G-Klasse model," a company spokesman said.

Supplying OE tires to car manufacturers does not generate much revenue for tiremakers but securing big companies as clients helps improve their brand images and can lead to the raising of product prices down the line.

For tiremakers, it is more profitable to sell replacement equipment (RE) tires in after-sales markets.

Kumho Tire currently supplies tires to global carmakers, such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Skoda and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.

It operates six plants: three overseas ones in Georgia of the United States, Vietnam and China, and three domestic ones in Gwangju, Gokseong and Pyeongtaek.

In 2017, the six plants had an overall output capacity of 54.64 million tires but produced 48.29 million tires.

Last year, Qingdao Doublestar acquired Kumho Tire by investing 646.3 billion won (US$578 million) to take a 45 percent stake of the country's second-biggest tiremaker after Hankook Tire Co.

In the January-September period, Kumho Tire's net losses deepened to 159.21 billion won from 59.91 billion won a year earlier.

Mercedes-Benz's all-new G-Klasse SUV (Yonhap)

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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