The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by the need for comfort, convenience, and safety, and growing importance of technologies such as sensors, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.2 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in Automotive: Pneumatic tyre reinforcements. Buy the report here.

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

290+ innovations will shape the automotive industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the automotive industry using innovation intensity models built on over 619,000 patents, there are 290+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, resilient spoke wheels, auto-transmission lubrication circuits, and ignition switching engines are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Engine purge actuators, electro-dynamic braking, and adsorptive vapour recovery system estimation are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are collision avoidance braking control system and direct injection type engines, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the automotive industry

Pneumatic tyre reinforcements is a key innovation area in automotive

Pneumatic tire reinforcements help in boosting tyre strength and ensure optimal driving performance. These materials help to increase the tyre's durability, handling, and fuel efficiency. Pneumatic tyre reinforcement materials are broadly categorised into steel, textiles, and synthetic reinforcements such as aramid and nylon.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 20+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of pneumatic tyre reinforcements.

Key players in pneumatic tyre reinforcements – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to pneumatic tyre reinforcements

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Compagnie Generale des Etablissements Michelin 810 Unlock company profile
Bridgestone 459 Unlock company profile
Yokohama Rubber 194 Unlock company profile
Continental 149 Unlock company profile
Haci Omer Sabanci Holding 105 Unlock company profile
Sumitomo Electric Industries 75 Unlock company profile
Goodyear Tire & Rubber 60 Unlock company profile
Hankook Tire & Technology 29 Unlock company profile
Kolon 20 Unlock company profile
Nippon Steel 20 Unlock company profile
Toyo Tire 18 Unlock company profile
Camfin 16 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 11 Unlock company profile
Asahi Kasei 11 Unlock company profile
Haci Omer Sabanci Holding 11 Unlock company profile
DIC 10 Unlock company profile
Tokyo Rope Manufacturing 10 Unlock company profile
Seino Holdings 8 Unlock company profile
Kolon Industries 7 Unlock company profile
Nippon Zeon 7 Unlock company profile
Sumitomo Sei Steel Wire 6 Unlock company profile
Avantium 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Compagnie Generale des Establissements Michelin is one of the leading innovators in pneumatic tyre reinforcements with 810 patents. The company has developed pneumatic tyres that absorb the unevenness of terrain resulting in less shaking and bumping during a ride. Additionally, the company provides thicker treads that offer traction for driving on slick and irregular surfaces. Other companies innovating in this technology domain are DIC, Kolon, and Continental.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Automotive.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.