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FIRESTONE INTRODUCES WORLD'S FIRST LTP METRIC RADIAL LIGHT TRUCK TIRE

 FIRESTONE INTRODUCES WORLD'S FIRST LTP METRIC
 RADIAL LIGHT TRUCK TIRE
 CHICAGO, Feb. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- To meet the emerging needs of the growing light truck/sport utility vehicle market, Firestone today unveiled an innovative new concept in light truck tires. The Firestone Firehawk R4S LTP, the first tire of its kind in the world and the first Firestone light truck tire to carry the Firehawk name, combines the durability and traction of a light truck tire with the comfortable, quiet ride of a passenger tire and the sporty look of a performance tire.
 This unique hybrid tire, the result of two years of development and testing efforts by Firestone tire engineers in the United States, was introduced at a special press briefing at the Chicago Auto Show.
 The Firestone Firehawk R4S LTP is being manufactured in North America and will carry both a 50,000 mile limited treadwear warranty and Firestone's standard pro-rated warranty against defects in materials and/or workmanship.
 Available in three popular sizes -- LTP205/75R15, LTP215/75R15 and LTP235/75R15 -- the Firestone R4S LTP is designed to fit most of today's compact and full size pickup trucks, vans, mini-vans and sport utility vehicles (SUV). All three sizes will be available to Firestone retailers in mid-May of ths year.
 "The Firehawk R4S LTP was created to meet a growing need in the growing light truck/SUV market," said Stan Cooper, manager of consumer products marketing for Firestone. "Consumers want the ride comfort, handling and low noise level of a passenger tire, the traction, durability and long tread life of a light truck tire, and the aggressive look of a performance tire. Before today they had to compromise and buy one or the other. Now they can have all those important characteristics in one tire: the Firestone Firehawk R4S LTP."
 The unique construction and performance characteristics of the Firehawk R4S LTP necessitated the creation of a new tire sizing designation -- LTP (Light Truck, Personal use) -- which has been approved by the Tire & Rim Association, an industry organization that governs tire sizing in the United States.
 "Our LTP-sized tires have the same basic dimensions of their equivalently sized metric passenger counterparts," said Cooper, "so they will create no problems with vehicle computers, anti-lock braking systems, speedometer accuracy, suspension travel or wheel well size, and they will fit on standard passenger tire rated original equipment and aftermarket 15-inch wheels."
 The tread of the Firehawk R4S LTP features an advanced high modulus tread rubber compound for long wear, solid traction and chip/tear resistance; a tread depth that is 2/32nds to 4/32nds deeper than a standard passenger tire, depending on the size; mud and snow rated tread design for all-season and all-weather performance; continous shoulder rib to resist irregular tread wear; wide circumferential flow-through grooves to channel away water and help prevent hydroplaning; and computer-designed tread pattern with Firestone's exclusive WAV noise treatment to reduce road noise.
 The Firehawk R4S LTP is constructed using two light truck tire-type steel belts -- 25 percent stronger than conventional passenger tire steel belts -- for high durability and resistance to cuts, punctures and impact damage; twin polyester casing plies to smooth jolts and ride vibration; and radial construction for ride comfort and excellent handling.
 The Firestone Firehawk R4S LTP is designed for fitment on such vehicles as Ford's Ranger 4x4 Pickup, F150 4x2, E150 van, Bronco, and Bronco II models; General Motors' Astro/Safari mini-van, S-10 4WD pickup, C-1500 pickups, Chevrolet Suburban, Chevrolet Blazer S/T10 and S/T15 models; Chrysler Corp.'s Dodge D-150S, Dodge Dakota, Jeep Cherokee and Comanche models, as well as such import makes as the Mazda B2600 4WD pickup, and the Nissan Pathfinder.
 -0- 2/6/92
 /CONTACT: Jim Smith of Firestone, 615-391-0088/ CO: Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc. ST: Illinois IN: AUT SU: PDT


CG -- CL031 -- 7970 02/06/92 18:08 EST
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Date:Feb 6, 1992
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