A brief history

Dunlop Rubber was a multi-national company founded in 1889 by Harvey du Cros and involved John Boyd Dunlop who invented and developed the first pneumatic tyre. Dunlop was one of the first multi-nationals which grew to be one of the largest British industrial companies.

Many years later, Dunlop Rubber failed to keep abreast of the evolving tyre market in the 1970’s which resulted in a drop-in demand due to much more durable tyres available on the market through their competitors. This resulted in Dunlop Rubber being acquired by BTR in 1985 as well as other various companies in North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand meaning the Dunlop trade-name has been fragmented.

Dunlop is now approaching its 125th year as one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of high-performance tyres. Dunlop is a brand owned by The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company based in Akron, Ohio (United States) and employs over 73,000 people in 22 countries and produces almost 200 million tyres every year.
Dunlop is a versatile company who produce a wide range of tyres for motorcycles, All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs), competition go-karts and commercial trucks with their main focus is on performance which has led to numerous innovations and breakthrough technologies.

Dunlop’s dates of historical importance

  • 1888: John Boyd Dunlop invented, developed and patented the first pneumatic tyres by creating tyres made from canvas which have been bonded with liquid rubber.
  • 1889: Cyclist Willie Hume won a slew of racing events after adopting John Boyd Dunlop’s invention which was just the start of the brand’s racing success.
  • 1922: The invention of a brand-new Dunlop tyre produced from metal rods and canvas casing was revolutionary to the market at the time and had triple the service life of other brands.
  • 1923: Dunlop’s first Grand Prix victory
  • 1927: Captain Malcolm Campbell breaks the land speed record twice in 4 years by achieving speeds of 207 mph using Dunlop tyres.
  • 1937: Dunlop wins Le Mans (24-hour run) for the 10th time.
  • 1958: Dunlop dominates Formula 1.
  • 1962: Aquaplaning was an unexpected and unknown phenomenon until Dunlop Technical Team identified the caused and begun work on developing a tyre which could tackle this problem.
  • 1968: First ever London to Sydney Marathon winner!
  • 1988: Dunlop’s 100th birthday
  • 1998: Dunlop develop Self-Supporting Technology system (DSST) which enables vehicles to drive on flat tyres.
  • 1999: Dunlop introduce Warnair which is a tyre-pressure-loss detection system.
  • 2002: Dunlop introduce 3S Technology. This technology boasts a three-zone asymmetrical tread design that offers safety, sportiness and silent running.
  • 2007: Dunlop introduce Touch Technology
  • 2008: First tyre containing Kevlar pulp inserted into the sidewall is developed in order to improve steering response.
  • 2009/10: Dunlop becomes an official technical partner for BMW Motorsport.