The history of the Michelin tire :
Edouard and André MICHELIN take over the small family rubber factory.
The beginning of their great history begins with the development of a revolutionary product: a removable tire that can be easily repaired in the event of a puncture. No one believes in it until the arrival the following year, in 1891, of the famous Paris Brest Paris bicycle race (211 riders at the start). For a first try, it's a masterstroke, Charles Terront who drives on these new tires wins the race ahead of Jiel Laval who was riding on Dunlop tires glued (English made).
The following year, Michelin organized a bicycle race between Clermont Ferrand and Paris, "la course aux nails", whose course will be dotted with nails in some places, to prove that Michelin tires can be repaired more quickly than others. Only competitors with Michelin's removable inner tube tires finished the race.
The Michelin tire was an immediate success: nearly 10,000 cyclists adopted it that year.
This masterstroke by Michelin will not be the only one, but the first in a long series that marks the ingenuity and talent of the Michelin brothers.
In 1895, they built "l'Eclair", the first car on tyres in the world, and aligned it with the Bordeaux-Paris cycle race to accompany the riders. They demonstrated to the then sceptical public that cars can run on air.
Also pioneers in aviation, the Michelin brothers adapted their tires and built nearly 2000 Bréguet aircraft in 1914.
They then had the railway left... But in 1929, the Michelins began to apply the advantages of their tires (more silence, more comfort) in this field. Here again, it's a masterstroke; they create a special tire and the light and fast railcar that goes with it, whose name is still in our memories: the "micheline".
In 1946, a technological revolution, Michelin developed and patented a new tire, the Radial, which is more durable, consumes less fuel and covers more kilometres.
Since then, Michelin has continued to evolve, thanks in particular to its testing and research centers in Ladoux (Clermont Ferrand), which currently employs more than 2500 researchers, Laurens in the United States and Almeria in Spain.
Many parallel activities for Michelin :
The Michelin brothers' genius was not limited to the creation of revolutionary tires.
They published the first Michelin guide in 1900, the first Michelin road map in 1910.
Will follow the tourist guides, other Michelin maps, road signs and more recently ViaMichelin.
In 1935, Michelin took control of Citroën, which it kept until 1975.
Michelin bicycle tires and competition :
From its birth to today, Michelin has always maintained a close relationship with the competition.
In cycling, since 1891 with ParisBrestParis. Michelin will be a partner of the PEUGEOT professional cycling team from 1965 to 1985, one of the most successful cycling teams of all time. Today, Michelin supports many athletes such as Julie Bresset, Olympic champion and cyclocross world champion, Nicolas Vouilloz, ten-time downhill world champion, Rémy Absalon and many others.
Michelin today :
Michelin is the world's second largest tire manufacturer, produces more than 170 million tires per year for all types of vehicles, employs more than 110,000 people worldwide, including about 23,000 in France. Michelin is present in 170 countries with 68 production sites in 17 countries.
Michelin is part of our daily lives through its many types of products, symbolized by the famous Michelin Man born in 1898!
A wide choice of Michelin mountain bike and road tires, suitable for all disciplines :
For road bikes:
- The PRO4 range, adapted to competition, including the PRO4 Endurance, well adapted to cyclists, guaranteeing an additional 40% resistance to punctures.
- The Lithion 2 range, perfect for training
- The Dynamic range, everyday tyres, robust and durable
- The cyclocross range