The rubber industry in 1953 shipped more than 100,000,000 tires and had
ITS BEST sales YEAR IN HISTORY. SIGNIFICANT IN THE YEAR WAS THE SUBSTAN
TIAL INCREASE IN THE PRODUCTION CAPACITY OF GIANT TIRES THAT DWARF THE
MEN WHO BUILD AND USE THEM.
For THE 30th consecutive time, Firestone tires were on the winning
CARS in the 500-mile Indianapolis Sweepstakes. Left to right: Frank
Coon, mechanic; Bill Vukovich, driver of the winning car; Johnny
^ Moore, Firestone Racing Division, and Jim Travers, mechanic
The car which set a new American land-speed record of ^55.41 miles
an hour at Bonneville, Utah, was also equipped with Firestone tires.
Willie Young (left), driver, and Bill Kenz, owner of the car, are
SHOWN after the RECORD.
Among the more important tires added to the Firestone line in 1953
WAS THE TUBELESS, NYLON-CORD-BODY FiRESTONE '’500” PASSENGER CAR TIRE.
It was developed as a result of experience in BUILDING TIRES FOR THE
500-MILE Indianapolis Race. Raymond C. Firestone (right). Executive
Vice-President, points out features of the tire to Lee R. Jackson,
THERE IS GROWING confidence in the future of natural rubber, as
evidenced by large-scale replanting programs in the Far East. This activity
supports the opinion that I have so often stated, on the basis of our ov^n
experience, that efficient plantations can be profitably operated in com
petition with synthetic rubber.
Production of natural rubber on the Firestone Plantations in Liberia
was 72,131,648 pounds, a large part of which was in the form of latex to
meet the growing demand for this premium product.
Firestone’s reputation as a pioneer and pacemaker in the industry has
continued to be enhanced through the efforts of our research scientists and
development engineers. The various projects of the Research and Develop
ment Divisions are always aimed at improving the quality of our products,
lowering production costs, and developing new products to increase our i
Tubeless tires for all types of motor vehicles now are being produced
or service-tested by the Company. Among the more important tires added
to the Firestone line in 1953 was the tubeless, nylon-cord-body Firestone ^
“500” passenger car tire. This tire was developed as a result of our ex
perience in building tires for the 500-mile Indianapolis Race.
* * *
WE ARE OFFERING tubeless passenger car tires in three price ^
ranges. These are the Supreme, the “500” and the DeLuxe Champion
Recently, for the first time, an automobile manufacturer is offering
its customers tubeless tires as optional original equipment, which Firestone |
To meet the needs of the aircraft industry, Firestone designed and i
developed the first tubeless tire to fulfill the rigid requirements of military
Other important products announced during the year were the
Firestone Standard passenger car tire, built to meet competition in the
low-priced tire market; the Firestone Super All Traction truck tire for
on-and-off the highway service; the Firestone Nylon Super Tread truck
tire for high-speed highway service; the Firestone Nylon Rib Excavator j
tire, and the nylon-cord-body Firestone Rock Grip Excavator and Firestone '
All Traction logger tires.
* * *
NEW TYPES of Exon vinyl resins, Velon plastic yarns and Butaprene
synthetic rubbers were developed for specialized uses.
Demand for the many new types of Exon resins, which are now in '
production, increased substantially during the year. One of these resins, i
which can be calendered or extruded, has proved extremely satisfactory
for use as pipe, tubing and sheeting where corrosion-resistant properties
are important. A notable development in our Velon products was the produc
tion of fine yarn for the weaving of curtains. The expansion program for [
the production of Exon vinyl resins and Butaprene synthetics was com-
pleted during the year.
Again, every major national championship automobile race was won ;
on Firestone tires. For the thirtieth consecutive time, Firestone tires were
on the winning cars in the 500-mile Indianapolis Sweepstakes and for the
twenty-fifth consecutive time in the Pike’s Peak Climb. The first fo^^
places in the International Stock Car Division of the Mexican Road ,
went to cars equipped with our tires. Firestone tires were also on the cai
which set a new American land-speed record of 255.41 miles an hour ^
Bonneville, Utah. 1
ii: ik I
THE NECESSITY for building better and safer highways and
properly maintaining our present highway system becomes increasin^^
clear every day. During the year our Company called nationwide
to this serious problem through news and advertising media, motion I
distribution, radio and television. We pointed out that further delay I
building of an adequate, modern highway system could result in the
loss of thousands of lives and billions of dollars in property damage, k
large companies in the transportation field have joined in this camp^