THE TRUTH ABOUT NITTO TIRES

THE TRUTH ABOUT NITTO TIRES


(light music) – You moving back and forth
shows energy, shows action. You have your whole body
moving into something, you have your shoulders
up, you’re ready to go you can talk about whatever you want, then you sit back down and you’re like, “We’re gonna talk about tire history.” The tire brand that’s all
about being aggressive and tough, and beards and stuff. Today we’re gonna be
talking about the tire brand that pretty much all of you know and love, Toyo Tires’ little brother, Nitto Tire. Nitto Tire was founded in 1949, and while they’re
partnered with Toyo Tires, Nitto was originally an
independent tire maker. And for the most part, just simply exported their tires
though all of the world. There was nothing super crazy
about Nitto’s upbringing besides the fact that they wanted to make affordable tires
that just could sell. But there was one problem with Nitto that a lot of other companies didn’t have. They just couldn’t figure
out how to sell tires. They exported bias ply truck tires and some commercial
tires, but amongst that they really just didn’t have an image or focus or target market
or anything like that. They just made tires. By the 1960s, Nitto was exporting
all throughout the world, most predominantly the United
States and the Middle East. Now, it’s not to say that, really, Nitto’s history is that shy when it comes to difficult situations. Nitto just never really had it easy. They had numerous times where they almost declared bankruptcy, had multiple issues with
service and quality, and just overall had a tough
time just trying to stay alive. And even though Nitto began to expand and grow throughout the world, every single time they got bigger, they just had a harder time staying alive. The company didn’t know what to do. They expanded into the
United States market in the hopes that it would
help their portfolio, but their Japanese headquarters… Their Japanese headquarters essentially could not stay afloat
for the life of them. They tried desperately to grow
in the United States market and even opened up a sales
operation in California. But while things were just
kinda starting to take off here and not really in any good way, they just could not
figure out how to maintain the entire ship of Nitto
together without it, you know… (whistles)
You know, sinking. But it became very clear that Nitto had to figure out something
to do with the brand, otherwise they just weren’t gonna survive. And even though Toyo Tire
acquired them in 1979, Nitto really didn’t get
a whole lot of help. They just didn’t have a good time, man. They just weren’t doing the
best that they possibly could. In fact they probably
weren’t even doing mediocre. So how would you say they
were going in the 1980s? Wellllll… Not so great. I mean, they were doing
okay, but not good enough to actually maintain their original market of their Japanese headquarters. Nitto had pulled nearly
everything they possibly could back in and only supplied tires
to well, two specific areas, which was the Middle East and
the United States of America. Besides that, Nitto just was not capable of holding on to anything more than that. So there was good news: Nitto
made six million in sales. Bad news: they nine
million tires in inventory. Everything from start to finish when it came to Nitto,
was in complete disarray. See, now this is where it actually gets fun to talk about Nitto because when the 1990s came around,
Nitto finally decided, “Let’s try to fix this
from the ground up.” Enter a man named Tomo Mizutani. Now, Tomo was essentially Nitto’s answer to figuring out all of their problems. Tomo was a guy that was
essentially created and well, put in a position to turn
around the Nitto brand. He just started asking
people what they wanted. And he got the idea
from another individual. Hiroki Ichiki. He got the idea from the man in regards to somebody that had
noticed that there was a large growing population
of import tuners that were putting aftermarket
wheels on their cars but didn’t have tire
sizes to appropriately fit these, well, aftermarket vehicles. And there was a lot of street
racing happening in Japan as well as western
California began to grow, and there wasn’t a tire manufacturer that was actually capable of making the stuff that enthusiasts wanted. So Tomo decided, well,
“If there’s ever a chance “to make some money,
let’s go ask other people “and see if that’s what they want.” And he did, he went to
different autobody shops, repair shops, racing shops,
and everything in between to ask people what they wanted. And they got pretty much one answer: “Just give us different tire sizes.” So they had three months to come up with some sort of answer,
otherwise something was gonna cut and they were likely not gonna have a future in the company. Three months went by and Tomo and his team essentially created the
tire that people wanted. He returned back to a
lot of these racing shops and different locations to showcase these products that they made. A lot of the guys that
talked to Tomo had no idea what Nitto was, and they had
no idea what the brand was, but really, the enthusiasts didn’t care. They didn’t have brand
loyalty like they do now, and they really didn’t care
because it just provided them with an opportunity to have
tires that fit their wheels. Tomo, by the way, is now
the United States President and CEO of Toyo Tires, which
is a pretty cool thing. See, I told you there was
some good news to this. So traditionally, Nitto really didn’t have any success in the past,
so Tomo and his team had a lot of freedom
to do what they wanted because at the end of the day, if it didn’t work, what
do you have to lose? Tomo and his team really essentially locked themselves in
rooms, days and nights, to figure out what products people wanted, doing all the R and D,
trying to create the molds and everything needed for people
to just start buying Nitto. I mean, it was (imitates bomb exploding) shocking to a company like Nitto that if they did that it worked. People like Dario Orlando began
to sponsor the Nitto brand because of his experience
with the tires themselves. But when Nitto started to get involved, especially with companies
like the Mustang scene and the forums and magazines that were catered around
the muscle car scene in terms of track use, Nitto began to win. And there’s a lot of companies that were starting to get upset by Nitto kinda taking the top off
and winning first place, and kinda just rubbing
it in everybody’s faces. Because this company came out of nowhere and started to listen
to what people wanted and their products
were, well, pretty good. It didn’t matter what the brand was because people started to like them. So they decided to attend more events and it became very clear
that they had another market that they were completely missing: trucks. They noticed that there’s
a huge truck market in the United States and they went out to car shows and trucks
shows and swap meets and baja events and everything in between to figure out what people wanted. And they found out that
truck people, well, they wanted different tire sizes. Weird, it’s like again,
enthusiasts wanting something and the brand was like, “Yeah,
we can make that for you.” So Nitto partnered with
companies like AMT Metal Alloys that made aftermarket truck
wheels and things like that. They just needed to
have something that had larger tire sizes and
Nitto was the one company that said, “Absolutely, we can do that.” Nitto was the reason
that a lot of companies began to supply these
larger, wider tire sizes that a lot of other companies
just didn’t offer at the time. And because of the price
point that they were at Nitto was just becoming
like the good guys. It was the company that people
wanted to do business with. It was the company that people
liked to do business with. It was like the cool, hip uncle. So Nitto had the car companies on lock, they had the truck guys, the mall crawlers like the truck right next to me, and they had everything
in between locked down, but there was one other market that they were completely missing that they noticed was taking over a lot of the California scene: off road. Nitto was like, “Boom, let’s go out there “and see if they want something.” And they did, they wanted tire treads that were aggressive
looking, that looked good, that performed well, that weren’t
gonna cost a lot of money, and Nitto was like, “Sure, let’s do that.” And they originally got the name from the fact that they
wanted their tire tread to look like a dinosaur footprint, but they introduced a whole
bunch of different tire treads. They introduced the Mud Grappler, which was extremely aggressive and loud and in your face, that
a lot of people loved. They introduced the Dune Grappler, which was for obvious reasons for dunes and things like that, that
had a great traction path and just worked outside of
your normal Walmart meet. They had the Trail Grappler,
which is considered one of the most popular mud tires that you can buy for
your truck at the time. And the Terra Grappler, which was an all-terrain truck
tire that, well you know, you could pretty much throw on anything. And these tires were massively successful. And then finally, and this is kinda jumping ahead a little bit, they introduced the Ridge Grappler, which is considered by most people, the most successful popular
truck tire you can possibly put on any aftermarket wheel
for the truck scene. Why are we talking about trucks so much? Well, because it was a
huge market that Nitto hit and they hit it extremely well. Because of that market
and because of the fact that the truck community
and the off road community and the car community were just taken back by how well Nitto was providing products, Nitto actually began
to like, be successful. Now they were actually
doing something pretty cool. They continued to listen to people, they hosted all sorts of different
competitions and designs. They came out with a cool
website in the late 90s that was like mind-blowing at the time. They introduced a competition
for design aesthetics for their Nitto Invo
line that was actually held online, which was extremely cool. And they just continued to do stuff that no other manufacturer
was doing at the time. And by 2004 their sales climbed to a hundred million dollars. Nitto came essentially from
nothing to something huge. And they did it by just going back to the grassroots of what they wanted to try and accomplish, which was to create products that
people just wanted. If you’re talking about
the Ridge Grappler, you’re talking about the
NT series, the drag series, if you’re talking about their more all-season tire, or all-terrain tire, they had everything that somebody wanted, and it was a pretty good looking tire. Even Toyo mentions that Nitto is a brand that’s meant for the sport tuning scene of the domestic American market. But the cool thing about it is
that Nitto doesn’t hide that. They’re proud of the fact that they’re creating products for enthusiasts. The brand loyalty that Nitto has grown in the short time that it’s actually gotten successful, is
absolutely incredible. And just as Mizutani once
said, even though Nitto is a Japanese company with a Japanese name and founded in Japan, it was
reborn in the United States, and that’s the reason why
the sales headquarters will remain in the United States. Because without the growth
of the domestic market of the United States of America, Nitto would likely not be a company. So if you’re looking to
pick up a set of Nittos or you just wanna check out wheels, tires, suspension, or airlift,
there’s a sales pitch coming. Check out fitmentindustries.com
and you know, see if you maybe wanna pick up a set. I mean, maybe you do. I don’t know what this is. And we have another giveaway. By the way, to the people that said that they requested Cragar, thank you. And the winner for this
week’s video is easy street so congratulations man, you won. We’re doing another giveaway, though. So this one’s pretty easy,
we’re gonna give you a t-shirt and we’re gonna give you
some spiked valve stem caps, which are pretty nice
little valve stem caps. We’re gonna do t-shirt,
we do valve stem caps. All you need to do is comment below on what your dream wheels are. So if you have your dream wheels that you wanna buy, drop a comment below. If you already have
them, just drop a comment on what they are, sizes, offsets,
all that sorta good stuff. So we’ll take anything, we wanna see what your dream wheels
are, then of course, if you have aftermarket
wheels, you can add them to our gallery at
fitmentindustries.com/add. But we’ll be picking a winner on next week’s video, which
is suspension history. We hope you guys enjoyed, I’m
Alex from Fitment Industries. Don’t forget to subscribe and thank you so much for watching,
we’ll see you later, peace.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. My dream wheels are Blitz BRW Type 03 18×9 et40 running wobble bolts to 5×112, but I have cast Rotiform LAS-R on my MK7 GTI right now

  2. Might be too late but my dream wheels are O.Z. I like the company history. Imagine O.Z.'s with Nitto tires.
    😲

  3. Man there’s too many wheels I love for different cars but For my 2018 STI my Favorite track wheel would be SSR xt01 deep concave 18×10.5 +15. And the Rotiform six 3pc 18×10.5 +15 would look super dope on my car for show and streeet:) Peace from Maui, love you guys!

  4. It really depends on the car, but if I was going to buy wheels for my dream FD, it would one of those three:
    -Grenade GX01 in chrome
    -OG TE37 in bronze
    -CR Kai Kiwami in sliver

  5. Dream wheels? ahh easily the: RaysEng Volks CE28 SL 18×10 +20 5X114.3 (face variant: face 3; Rim: L; Color: Press Graphite)

  6. 15" 100 spoke Dayton Wire Wheels. 8 inch wide 24k gold spokes and nipples and chrome lip. Maybe triple 24k gold 🙂 And definitely with the eagle knock off chips!!!

  7. My dream wheels: Niche Spec. Custom sized. Fully forged.
    $1,500-$2k each
    http://www.nicheroadwheels.com/spec-w-25810.htm

  8. my dream wheels are for a truck they are American Force Hero ss8 20×14 in gloss black -73 offset and some nitto nt-420s 305/50/r20s

  9. My Dream wheels would be any aggressive 20×10 -40 offset Chevy 6 lug wrapped in nothing but the finest quality of tire called Nitto Terra Grappler 275/55r20 and powder coated to match the factory paint on my 89 c2500.

  10. Something about Nitto that I really enjoy, the asking for suggestions isn't just limited to shops, you can submit suggestions on their website for specific patterns to take into considerations

  11. I already own one of the sets of wheels I lusted after; Enkei RS05RR for my FRS. When I first built an FRS in Gran Turismo 5, I gravitated towards those wheels so when I got a real FRS, my goal was to save up for those wheels. And then wrapped in BFGoodrich Sport comp2

    I want to get either Hayashi Sakuras or SSR LongChamp XR4 for my AE86.
    I haven't decided what I want on my 18 WRX yet. any suggestions? thinking Enkei TS10

  12. so did they come on impala SS 94s 95s 96s ?🤔from the lot brand new or 🤔what's the deal on that anyone know

  13. Never tried nitto tires. I'm a bfgoodrich or Goodyear tire guy. But I have used dunlop, continental and few others but never even considered nitto. I'm running bfgoodrich g force sports on my firehawk and bfg at ko2 on my truck. Goodyear gt2 on my other truck.

  14. Please do more of "The truth about … tires !" Amazing videos and very interesting to watch. I wish you would make Pirelli and Continental too.

  15. Got my dream wheels. Work Meister s1 3p, Silver with polished outter barrels 19"x9" 19"x10" on 2002 S8 fd3s Rx7.

  16. set of racing slick for Autocross instead of going medorka on what get good mileage and does ok at autocross I would like to try the Nitto nt05 but cant do to they would last maybe 2 mouths with my auto crossing and how much I drive everyday. most of the tires I have went with in the past are the BF Goodrich com2 are the firestone fire hawks both good tires.

  17. te37 16×9 with some crazy ass offset so the wheel fits around thick ass calipers. i got like te37 but its 7 inches wide soo…

  18. I'm 9 videos deep and I'm in love with this channel and company; I am placing an order on coilovers, fender rollers, 20" Avant Garde M510's, and a few sets of tires that will inevitably meet their doom in all sideways moving, rubber burning glory, all thanks to Fitment Industries. Thanks bros ✌

  19. My dream wheels hands down
    HRE 940 series 940rl's 8.5 wide × 17in with a 30 offset wrapped in the best tires ive ever had Nitto Nt01s 245/45r17s i was gonna buy this exact combo then realized the total cost..m just shy of 15k after shipping taxes mounting balancing etc etc

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *