BFGoodrich has an outstanding historical legacy in the automotive world and, due to this, it maintains a base of incredibly faithful customers. It’s kept its roots as an American company since the very beginning, from outfitting the first ever American production car to being one of the only companies still manufacturing tires in the US. By its faith in American innovation and fabrication, the company has been able to stand the test of time.
- What makes BFGoodrich’s Tires different?
- BFGoodrich Design Features
- A History of BFGoodrich
- BFGoodrich in the Tire Industry
- BFGoodrich Warranty Information
- BFGoodrich Gives Back
- BFGoodrich and Auto Racing
- BFGoodrich’s Best Selling Tires
- A List of BFGoodrich’s Tire Models
What makes BFGoodrich’s Tires different?
Born in the USA
BFGoodrich is part of the fabric of American automotive history, starting with the first American car ever produced crossing the continent. Since then, BFGoodrich has been dedicated to American automobiles and American auto enthusiasts, racing, driving, and manufacturing in the USA.
BFGoodrich is one of the only major tire companies that does a majority of its manufacturing in the US, and it plans to keep it that way. Tires are made in three facilities in two different states. One factory is located in Woodburn, Indiana, the other two are located in Alabama.
BFGoodrich: A Legend in Truck Tires
Among truck owners, BFGoodrich is frequently talked about as one of the leading names in the space. They’ve earned this reputation through over 100 years of servicing the American truck and off-road market, which began with the first cross-country trip across the US being made on BFGoodrich tires.
Goodrich has refined and developed its offerings since then, but the company has maintained a good reputation with truck owners due to its perpetual commitment to the category. Other manufacturers prefer to sell higher volumes of simple passenger car tires, but BFGoodrich has understood since the early days the value of customer loyalty. By bringing quality truck and SUV tires to the market year after year, the company is able to cash in on that well-earned goodwill.
Along with a host of highway models meant for trucks, BFGoodrich is most renowned for its off-road tires. The flagship All Terrain T/A and Mud Terrain T/A are very popular with rock crawling and trail driving aficionados. The truck range serves everything from small crossovers to the biggest pickups available.
Cooperative Approved Tire List
To make sure all government vehicles are properly equipped, state and federal governments independently test tires against their own quality standards. Those that pass then make it onto the Cooperative Approved Tire List, which is the only pool of tires that government car fleets can purchase.
BFGoodrich has two tires that feature on the list, the BFGoodrich Advantage T/A and the BFGoodrich g-Force COMP-2 A/S. These tires are used in all types of government vehicles, including pursuit and intercept cars. If BFGoodrich’s products can stand up to the heavy use involved with the cars of firemen, policemen, and federal agents, they can certainly stand up to whatever you can throw at them.
BFGoodrich Design Features
Equal Tension Containment System
Tires tend to distort when performing complex maneuvers or working under a high load. When the shape of the tire warps, this causes poor performance and even traction loss in extreme circumstances. BFGoodrich manufactures tires with its Equal Tension Containment system to prevent this from happening. The system allows the rubber to be molded with reinforcement in certain places, meaning that the tire can stay stiffer when turning. This stiffness yields more stability and better handling.
Aqua Flume Technology
The most difficult part of designing a tire is creating a tread that performs well in poor weather conditions. BFGoodrich engineers have spent millions of dollars and thousands of hours on Aqua Flume technology, a tread pattern that clears the tire’s contact patch to create grip on the road.
The tread contains both curved and straight grooves, which disrupts water and snow as it tries to settle on the tire surface. With this design, steering, handling, and braking in poor weather are drastically improved.
3D Active Sipe Technology
Tire sipes are small, secondary zig-zags in the tire tread that help the rubber create more traction against the road surface. While most manufacturers put in sipes, BFGoodrich has taken the technology to the next level, using innovations from track racing cars to adapt and bring 3D Active Sipes to the consumer market.
BFGoodrich’s tire sipes are designed such that the internal grooves actually lock together when turning. By locking together, the tire becomes stiffer and thus has a more solid platform to turn on. Sipes are designed differently depending on the size of the tire to maximize the efficacy of the technology, but no matter what, the sipes lengthen the useful life of the tread while improving cornering traction.
BFGoodrich CoreGuard Technology
On BFGoodrich’s beefy off-road models, customers continue to rave about their industry-best flat protection. Other manufacturers use similar flat-prevention technology on both passenger and truck tires, but BFGoodrich recognizes the need for added flat protection for trucks.
Off-road all-terrain tires use a race-tested and race-developed split-and-bruise resistant sidewall that is designed to be thick, rigid, and light. With CoreGuard, slits and cuts can be deflected better and the technology enables sidewalls to be thickened by 15-20% with a minimal weight penalty.
A History of BFGoodrich
BFGoodrich is one of the oldest tire brands in the United States, founded by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Goodrich in 1870. Although Benjamin Goodrich was initially trained as a medical doctor, he found wealth in the oil industry and decided to capitalize on the industrialization of the US by constructing a rubber factory.
After his death, his son inherited the company and used its rubber production capabilities to become a supplier for the world’s first automobiles. In 1903, the company began to invest in early racing, creating the first tire research and development center in the United States. There, it created the tires for the first vehicle to cross the continent from east to west.
BFGoodrich continued to make headlines for its cutting edge products, setting a land speed record in 1909 and providing the tires for the Spirit of St. Louis, the plane that made the first transatlantic flight. Thanks to savvy marketing and reliable products, the company was one of the biggest American tire companies by the early 1930s.
BFGoodrich continued to innovate throughout the second half of the century, creating the first tubeless tire in America and later the first radial tire. In 1976, BFGoodrich officially launched the first all-terrain exclusive tire, forever earning a spot in off-road history. In 1990, the company merged with the biggest tire producer in the world, Michelin.
Since then, BFGoodrich has simplified its offerings. It generally sticks to two product lines: midrange passenger vehicle tires and heavy-duty off-road offerings. While BFGoodrich isn’t as big as it once was, the company continues to make history in the American tire industry.
BFGoodrich in the Tire Industry
BFGoodrich exploded in popularity, then died down, and is now back to a growth phase again. The company rode the initial automobile bubble through its first 70 years of existence, ending up as one of the biggest tire companies in the fifties and sixties.
As companies shifted to cheaper manufacturing in the second half of the 20th century, BFGoodrich maintained a steadfast presence in the states. The company would largely refuse foreign production up until its acquisition in the 1990s, which made it difficult for its products to be competitive on price. The company lost market share until it was acquired by Michelin in the 1990s. After the sale, it once again had the resources needed to grow.
With Michelin, the company refined its vision and stopped trying to make a full range of products. By cutting out the least popular models and transferring that business to its parent company, BFGoodrich cut production costs while servicing its most loyal customers. With the resurgence of American manufacturing in the 2000s, the new strategy proved to be successful. Since then, BFGoodrich has steadily grown its market share and revenue.
Although BFGoodrich went through a stint with very few tires being offered directly to manufacturers, the company bounced back with two high-profile models being picked up by two of the biggest auto manufacturers in the world, Ford and Toyota.
For the last 20 years, BFGoodrich has equipped both the blockbuster Ford Mustang as well as the utilitarian Toyota Tacoma. Combined, this has helped sell BFGoodrich millions of units. 2020 versions feature the Advantage T/A Sport for the Mustang and the Rugged Trail for the Tacoma. BFGoodrich also equips the latest F-150 Raptor.
BFGoodrich used to be a tire manufacturer with a broad range of price points, but since the company was acquired by Michelin, the range of tires has tightened its scope. BFGoodrich is now almost exclusively mid-to-high-range tire provider.
The manufacturer has no tires priced below $75, which means that they aren’t trying to compete with budget providers like Uniroyal and Westlake. The company don’t have too many ultra-premium tires either, as the lion’s share of their road tires are well under $200. For the typical driver, BFGoodrich presents a good mid-range value.
The one exception for this is BFGoodrich’s famous off-road tires. These tires start in the same price range as standard road tires, but the cost quickly balloons for the highest-end competition tires. The Mud-Terrain A/T most commonly sells for over $500 per tire. Indeed, only a select few models and sizes have full sets coming in under $2000. These tires are almost exclusively for off-road fanatics or racers, so they’re priced accordingly.
BFGoodrich Warranty Information
BFGoodrich offers warranty coverage equal to or better than all of the top ten tire brands available in the US. While most companies have a single-year defect, workmanship, and materials warranty, BFGoodrich puts its comprehensive six-year warranty on the line for all the tires it sells.
Mileage warranties, in general, are typical for the industry, with specialty tires having lower life expectancies than all-season touring models. BFGoodrich’s g-Force high-performance models are covered for 35,000 miles, all-terrain tires get up to 50,000 miles guaranteed. The Advantage T/A and Touring T/A pro series get 75,000 expected miles. You can see specific mileage warranty statistics here.
The one thing that BFGoodrich lacks is roadside assistance coverage. Brands like Michelin and Goodyear have service crews that will fix flats and even tow cars if necessary, but BFGoodrich doesn’t have a large enough national presence to offer those services. Fortunately, organizations like AAA can fill in the gaps.
BFGoodrich Gives Back
Wings for Life Foundation
Each year, BFGoodrich holds a benefit running race all over the world that collects millions of dollars for the Wings for Life Foundation. The foundation works to find a cure for spinal injury and to date, the run has attracted over 280,000 participants from 193 different countries. It takes place at the exact same time in many different locations, which contributes to the camaraderie of the event. Since the race began, it has raised over 14 million dollars for the Wings of Life Foundation
BFGoodrich, unfortunately, does not have a sustainability program in place. Tires are not optimized for fuel efficiency, and therefore environmentally-conscious and gas-price-conscious drivers might want to look somewhere else for a cleaner pair of tires.
BFGoodrich Tradesmen Support Program
In 2019, to support American blue-collar labor, BFGoodrich launched a program to help the one million tradesmen and women that rely on pickup trucks to do their work. To help support these workers, BFGoodrich offers a number of perks for members of unions and trade associations. Members receive discounts on tires, roadside assistance for up to two years, a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, and an opportunity to win VIP experiences for big off-road races like the Baja 1000.
Outstanding Trails Program
As such a large supplier of off-road trail tires, BFGoodrich has a vested interest in keeping trail networks and communities healthy. Irresponsible and uneducated trail use can do worse than just damaging a track—it can damage the sport’s relationship with its community.
To reward organizations that do valuable trail work and promote responsible trail usage, the company has awarded grants to over 44 trail systems and auto clubs. Yearly, BFGoodrich doles out four multi-thousand dollar grants to ‘passionate and qualified off-road organizations.’ BFGoodrich only gives these grants to clubs that spend the money to preserve and protect local trail systems. Via this program, BFGoodrich can engage the community while simultaneously keeping the sport and its trail networks healthy.
BFGoodrich Deep Orange Project
BFGoodrich combined its goals of innovation and education through sponsoring a cooperative initiative called the Deep Orange Project. The brand funds a program at Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research to help develop a sustainable rally car. The car has a hybrid electric-gas powertrain which is sustainable yet powerful.
By developing this car, BFGoodrich can take insights about hybrid powertrains and apply them to technologies for the mass market. Simultaneously, the company invests in the future of automotive engineers by collaborating with the Clemson laboratory. By investing in universities, BFGoodrich is able to give back to the community at the same time as developing important technologies.
BFGoodrich and Auto Racing
BFGoodrich continues to pay homage to the auto racing that it grew out of in the early 1900s, participating in several disciplines across the US. The company’s racing participation is a fundamental part of its business strategy, and BFGoodrich sponsors tiny regional teams alongside high-budget truck teams at races as big as the Baja 1000.
Trophy Truck Racing
As one of the most legendary truck tire manufacturers in the world, it is practically mandatory for a BFGoodrich sponsored team to appear at every major event on the calendar. A perennial stop for the company is in Baja California, Mexico, with the world-famous Baja 1000 race being the highlight of the Trophy Truck season.
BFGoodrich also funds the popular Ultra4 series both in Europe and in the United States. Huge trucks combine offroad speed and power with rock-crawling precision and technique. The result is dynamic racing that involves low-speed rock sections alongside all-out 100 mph drifts across the desert. The series now takes place on multiple continents.
One of the biggest classes of amateur racing is MX-5 racing, a platform developed by Mazda. The series is incredibly accessible, with a very low cost to entry. BFGoodrich sponsors the biggest Mazda Series, the Global Mazda MX5 Cup. By sponsoring the Mazda Cup, the company can continue to engage racing enthusiasts on a grassroots level of the sport.
BFGoodrich Tournament Fishing
Catering to adventurous outdoor lovers, BFGoodrich sponsors a professional fishing team based out of Florida. Although the fishing team itself doesn’t use tires in competition, BFGoodrich continues to derive value from the sponsorship by using the team to help connect with one of its key demographics. The two team members have been incredibly successful, winning hundreds of thousands of dollars of tournament prize money while simultaneously gaining exposure for BFGoodrich.
BFGoodrich’s Best Selling Tires
BFGoodrich doesn’t switch its lineups too often, most tire models have been around in different variations for over 10 years. This way, enthusiasts will often have a go-to tire model that they recommend and stand by fully. A good example of this is with off-roaders, who usually swear by at least one of BFGoodrich’s all-terrain models. Below are some of BFGoodrich’s best known and most popular tires:
g-Force Rival Series
With the same technology that BFGoodrich uses on the track, the g-Force Rival Series brings storied racing technology that made the originally made the company a household name. The tire is grippy, fast, and durable, but it doesn’t perform well in rainy or snowy conditions.
- g-Force Rival: The g-Force Rival is a street-legal race tire, with a similar version being used on the international Mazda racing circuit. Soft rubber provides good cornering and off-the-line speed, although these tires wear out rather quickly.
- g-Force Sport Comp 2: The g-Force Sport Comp 2 is a slightly more practical version of the high-speed g-Force Rival, with a rain-ready tread but a soft rubber for good handling. It’s popular for its very reasonable price tag—you can get a full set for around $400.
Advantage T/A Series
The Advantage T/A Series is BFGoodrich’s line for daily drivers, with all-season capability and low prices. Treadlife warranties give over 70,000 miles of driver coverage. A proprietary 3D Active Sipe Technology keeps the tire stiff during aggressive handling. Aqua Flume technology keeps the tire with excellent traction even in the snow.
- Advantage T/A: The Advantage T/A is the most basic of all of BFGoodrich’s all-season trims. It offers good commuting performance year-round but struggles in heavy snow.
- Advantage T/A Sport: The Advantage T/A Sport uses a different tire compound made with silica to upgrade grip and rolling resistance from the standard Advantage T/A. This sport package comes with three different options of speed ratings, each is progressively more expensive.
The Mud-Terrain T/A is BFGoodrich’s best known off-road tire, a go-to recommendation for any rock-crawler or off-roader worth their salt. The huge tire is equipped with massive tread blocks that create traction even in the slipperiest of conditions. It’s not for the budget-minded or gas-saving crowd, as this tire is neither fuel-efficient or cheap.
- Mud-Terrain T/A KM2: The KM2 has an eternal spot in BFGoodrich’s off-road lineup. It’s got best-in-class traction and sidewall durability. BFGoodrich also made this tire as quiet as possible. It’s still loud, but it has more on-road manners than you might expect.
- Mud-Terrain T/A KM3: The KM3 is a redesign of the KM2 with a new rubber compound. Sidewall durability is improved 25 percent; traction improves as well.
Although BFGoodrich now only sells one version of this tire, the off-road model is still worth a mention for its near-legendary status in the world of trail driving. An aggressive tread can grip near-vertical rock walls and roll down the other side without a problem. The warranty covers the tire for up to six years.
- All-Terrain T/A KO2: Proving heritage, development, and a dedication to the best off-road products, BFGoodrich has created an off-road tire that can perform at all latitudes. This tire is the very same one that won the world-famous Baja 1000. Extra bonus? It works in the snow, too.
A List of BFGoodrich’s Tire Models
Extreme Performance Summer
g-Force Rival S
g-Force Rival S 1.5
Ultra High Performance Summer
Ultra High Performance All-Season
Grand Touring All-Season
Advantage T/A Sport (H- or V-Speed Rated)
Standard Touring All-Season
Advantage T/A Sport (T-Speed Rated)
Studless Ice and Snow
Winter Slalom KSI
Racetrack and Autocross Specific Tires
g-Force R1 S