Automakers outsource a variety of components to OEM suppliers. The parts could be as small as a screw or as large as the entire car itself, contracting the entire assembly process to outside bidders. But while some automakers make more or less of the parts in-house, one component is always outsourced: the tires.
Renault, however, takes exception to that rule, and in characteristic French defiance is rolling out its own line of tires. Rather than equipping new vehicles with its own rubber, however, the tires are being marketed to existing Renault owners as replacement rubber.
Called the Motrio line, the Renault tires are focused on cutting costs, while maintaining optimal performance and minimal road noise. Now we have but to assume that, even though they’re not saying who is, Renault didn’t start farming their own rubber and actually building the tires themselves. They’re likely made by an existing rubber company to Renault’s specifications and under their license. Still, the French automaker is claiming this as an industry first, and we can’t help but wonder if they won’t extend the project to include sister company Nissan as well.