Goodyear has launched Proactive Solutions, a fleet management service that builds on is Fleet Online Solution for tyre management which has been around 10 years and covers over 350,000 vehicles in Europe.

The services offered fall into two broad families, Proactive Tyre and Proactive Fleet, which includes two options Driver Behaviour and Track & Trace to reduce fuel consumption and improve safety.

But Goodyear Proactive Solutions (GPS) can be almost whatever the customer needs it to be to improve vehicle uptime, fuel economy and driver performance, according to GPS MD André Weisz. "We don’t offer what we have, we offer what the customer needs,” he said at the launch in Brussels this week. “The wide availability of new technology like telematics has allowed us to expand our service offering beyond tyre management.”

The service is based on advanced software developed by Goodyear that uses predictive algorithms to analyse data gathered via telematics to predict problems before they cause breakdowns. It also relies on Goodyear's European network of 2,000 service points to correct these problems quickly. At present, the service network is focused on tyres, but Goodyear EMEA vice president, commercial business Michel Rzonzef told the range of services could grow. “Today the first application is tyre breakdown,” he said. “But in future we could dream about many other things that could happen. The telematics provides the data and we have the back office team to provide advice on many other areas.”

This might involve partnering with other service providers covering parts of the vehicle other than tyres, he added. “If there is something specific where we see value I could imagine us partnering with other networks,” he said.

Goodyear Proactive Solutions Logo

But Rzonzef insisted Goodyear was not about to start taking on the vehicle manufacturers in diagnosing and fixing drivetrain faults. "They are our customers," he said. "We don't want to compete with them."

GPS is suitable for fleets of all sizes and running on any tyres, not just Goodyear, and uses best of breed products such as tyre pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) and telematics from third party suppliers to match the solution to the needs of the operator.

Among the fleets to pilot GPS is car transporter ECM, which used TPMS to increase tyre life and reduce fuel consumption.

“Goodyear Proactive Solutions enhances our role as a key commercial fleet partner by combining the latest digital technologies and data services with our existing fleet support systems and industry-leading TruckForce service network,” said Weisz. “Our solutions are fully compatible with all truck tyres allowing every fleet to benefit from these new connected fleet management.”

One outcome of using GPS could well be making tyres last longer, while the latest generation KMax high mileage tyres last up to twice as long as other tyres on the market, but Rzonzef said GPS was a not a response to falling tyre sales.

“We are still selling more tyres than ever,” he said. “Hopefully customers using GPS will realise that by using the best tyre they will get the greatest benefit.”