Continental Rolls out ‘American’ Bus and RV Tire

Dedicated efforts to provide the recreational vehicle and regional bus segment with a specialized all-position tire have paid off for Continental Tire the Americas, LLC’s (CTA) Commercial Vehicle Tire Division.CTA has launched the first tire engineered to both meet the needs of the people moving segment and to perform on roads throughout North and South America – the steer and all-position HSR2 SA, said Clif Armstrong, CTA’s marketing director for commercial tires in the Americas.

The HSR2 SA (Heavy Steer Regional, Special Application) is CTA’s first regional tire offering for the people segment that is designed and produced at the award-winning Continental plant in Mt. Vernon, Ill., Armstrong said. Continental engineers have now completed their product portfolio for people movers, as the division also boasts a long-distance steer/all-position tire for heavier buses and RVs (HSL1 Coach, introduced in January 2010) and a steer/all-position tire for urban bus traffic, the HSU1.

“A standard method of travel in Central and South America, bus and rapid transit is rapidly growing in the North American markets as public transportation systems are added and consumers look for ways to reduce their environmental impact,” Armstrong said. “By completing our product lineup for bus tires with the HSR2 SA, we have introduced our first regional application bus tire for the Americas that will help fleet managers and even RV drivers control their tire and fuel costs.”

The HSR2 SA accomplishes the goal of maximum fuel efficiency on regional roads through advanced tread design and compounding. It was verified in July 2010 by the U.S. EPA SmartWay Transport Partnership as a low rolling resistance truck tire when used in line haul steer positions, said Roger Stansbie, CTA’s director of truck tire engineering for the Americas.

“Not only will fleet operators and drivers find the HSR2 SA to be fuel efficient, but other features we added to this tire mean that it will perform well on regional roads in both North and South America, where you may find wet and muddy conditions, stones and other road hazards,” Stansbie explained.

“We added customized tread geometry that aids in water evacuation for good wet traction, and reduces stone retention that can damage the tire’s casing. We also balanced the pressure distribution with a five rib tread design and added our exclusive VAI+ visual alignment indicator system to help ensure even wear.”

The VAI+ system is a series of sipes that helps detect faulty alignment conditions by allowing early detection of wear differences between the shoulder ribs, Stansbie said. The exclusive Continental feature also indicates tread wear by changing from a plus sign to a minus at 8/32 inches of tread wear, and then disappearing at 4/32nds.

The long mileage, reliability and fuel efficiency of the HSR2 SA are an unbeatable package that both bus fleet managers and owners of larger RVs will appreciate, Armstrong said.

“We’re proud to have engineered this uniquely ‘American’ tire for bus and RV travel throughout our part of the world,” he commented.

The HSR2 SA is available now from Continental dealers throughout North and South America in sizes 275/80R22.5, 295/80R22.5 and 315/80R22.5. For more information on Continental commercial vehicle, bus and large RV tires, visit