BFGoodrich is an American tire brand. Originally part of the industrial conglomerate Goodrich Corporation, it was acquired in 1990 (along with Uniroyal, then The Uniroyal Goodrich Tire Company) by the French tire maker Michelin. BFGoodrich was the first American tire manufacturer to make radial tires. It made tires for the then new Winton car from Winton Motor Carriage Company.

Product typeTires
Produced byMichelin
CountryUnited States
Introduced1870; 154 years ago (1870)
Previous ownersGoodrich Corporation
Series of BFGoodrich off-road tires

BFGoodrich tires have been fitted to several noteworthy historical vehicles:

  • In 1903 the first car to cross the United States was fitted with BFGoodrich tires.
  • In 1927 Charles Lindbergh's airplane, the "Spirit of St. Louis," which made the first successful solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic, was fitted with BFGoodrich tires.
  • The Space Shuttle Columbia's landing gear was fitted with BFGoodrich tires.[1]

BFGoodrich has been involved in several Baja California Competitions and enjoyed success with 28 overall victories at the Baja 1000 and 13 times winner of the Paris–Dakar Rally.


The former BFGoodrich smoke stacks at the old tire plant, and headquarters in Akron, Ohio

Founded by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Goodrich in 1870, the B.F. Goodrich Company, later known as BFGoodrich, was among the first rubber tire manufacturers to be located west of the Appalachian mountain range. In the previous year, Goodrich had purchased the Hudson River Rubber Company. Based in Akron, Ohio, the BFGoodrich Company began as a manufacturer of rubberized hoses, which were sold mostly as firehoses. The company also produced rubberized belts, similar to those used on modern vehicles as serpentine belts (fan belt). As the company grew, it began to manufacture pneumatic bicycle tires, eventually leading to the production of pneumatic automobile tires in 1896, making BFGoodrich the first company in the United States to manufacture this type of tire.[2]

BFGoodrich was not the only tire manufacturer in the United States at the turn of the 20th century. Among its competitors were Goodyear, Firestone, General and Uniroyal. Due to extensive research and scientific methods, such as tire wear evaluation and longevity testing, BFGoodrich was at the leading edge of the industry. Ford Motor Company, then owned by Henry Ford, chose BFGoodrich tires to be fitted in the new Model A Ford in 1903. That same year, the Model A, equipped with the tires, became the first car to cross the United States from east to west. This event made BFGoodrich a household name.[3] The Goodrich Corporation, formerly called B.F. Goodrich Company, stopped making tires in 1988 and sold the business and the B.F. Goodrich name to Michelin. Although Michelin purchased the rights and many of the factories of B.F. Goodrich within the United States, the Goodrich factories continued tire production under the mother company Michelin. As of 2023 there are only two (2) of the B.F. Goodrich factories in operations producing tires, while still working under the original B.F. Goodrich name. These last two factory locations are Tuscaloosa, Alabama and Woodburn, Indiana.



Aside from being the first company in the United States to manufacture pneumatic automobile tires, BFGoodrich is also credited for introducing the rubber-wound golf ball, the first pressurized space suit and the use of synthetic rubber. Although significant, these innovations are not as well known as the company’s contributions to the tire industry.[4]

In 1947, BFGoodrich developed the first tubeless tire in the United States. The tubeless tire eliminate the need for an inner tube, which improves performance and safety, as well as enhanced comfort for the car's occupants.[5]

BFGoodrich produced the first radial tires in the United States in 1965. This innovation made tires even safer as radial tires have longer tread life and permit better absorption of road bumps.[6] The company patented an early sort of run-flat tire two years later, in 1967. This technology enables the vehicle to continue to be driven in emergencies by avoiding that the tire becomes flat instantly.[7]

BF Goodrich also developed the PF flyer shoe in 1933.



In 1909, BFGoodrich tires were fitted on a Curtiss airplane, thus marking BFGoodrich's entry in the aviation tire market. In this particular event, the plane, fitted with BFGoodrich tires, set a speed record of 75 kilometers per hour in Reims at the first international air race. BFGoodrich tires were also fitted to Charles Lindbergh’s plane, Spirit of St. Louis, when he completed the first solo non-stop transatlantic flight.[8]

In 1934, BFGoodrich produced a prototype for a pressure suit to be worn by airplane pilot Wiley Post at high altitudes.[9] This first prototype was made mostly of rubber, with the exception being the metal helmet and waist strap. The prototype suit was pressurized in an initial test, but it did not hold pressure as it was expected to. With improvements to the concept, a second prototype was made, using the same helmet, which successfully maintained pressurization. The second suit was successful, at least in holding pressure. The suit had shrunk around Post's body and was removed by cutting the suit apart. One year later, in 1935, another prototype was produced and is said to be the first practical pressure suit in the United States. Piloting his plane, the “Winnie Mae”, Post was able to fly to an altitude of approximately 50,000 feet, where he discovered the jet stream, paving the way for modern flight procedures. From this point forward, the suit created by BFGoodrich served as pattern for modern pressurized space suits.[10]

In 1946, B. F. Goodrich purchased the airplane, wheel, and brake division of Hayes Industries.[11][12]

Racing Heritage


BFGoodrich is also known for their performance and racing developments and achievements. Its roots in racing can be traced as far back as 1914, when BFGoodrich tires were used by the winning car of the Indianapolis 500. This was just the beginning of victories in several competitions including the Baja 1000, Paris-Dakar Rally, World Rally Championships and many other prestigious racing competitions.[13]

BFGoodrich has been active on the competitive off-road scene in the USA since 1973, but it was only two decades later that the American brand got its first taste of the world’s longest and toughest cross-country rally – the Dakar. BFGoodrich, Official Sponsor and exclusive tire partner of the Rallye du Dakar since 2002’s edition, proposes to all competitors access to premium tires and to its racing service present on all the Rallye’s duration.[14]



BFGoodrich developed and markets its flagship All-Terrain T/A and Mud-Terrain T/A tires. Due to its unique tread design and known raised white letters on the tire sidewall, the tire consolidated a loyal customer base, especially among off-roading enthusiasts, its main application is pickup trucks and body-on-frame SUVs. In the more recent years, UTV winnings are becoming more synonymous with BFG and their custom specifications are greatly appreciated on race day, Class 1, Class 10 , and Unlimited Spec Desert cars have also utilized BFGoodrich tires and have found a winning formula for over 30 races in a row. [citation needed]


  1. ^ "The First Tires to Orbit Earth". BFGoodrich. Retrieved 27 September 2022.
  2. ^ "B.F. Goodrich Company". Encyclopædia Britannica. The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
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  5. ^ "KEY DATES". BFGoodrich Tires. BFGoodrich. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  6. ^ "KEY DATES". BFGoodrich Tires. BFGoodrich. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
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  8. ^ "THE SAGA OF AN ETERNAL PIONEER". BFGoodrich Tires. BFGoodrich. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  9. ^ "automotive digital marketing".
  10. ^ "The Evolution of American Spacesuits". Simple Thing Called Life. Archived from the original on 10 April 2016. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  11. ^ "B. F. Goodrich Purchases Hayes Industries Division". Aviation News. Vol. 5, no. 8. McGraw-Hill Publishing Company. 4 March 1946. p. 11. Retrieved 15 August 2021.
  12. ^ "Yokohama Fender". Retrieved 24 September 2023.
  13. ^ "BFGOODRICH AND COMPETITION". BFGoodrich Tires. BFGoodrich. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  14. ^ "BFGOODRICH AND Dakar 2022". BFGoodrich Tires - Middle East and North Africa. BFGoodrich. Retrieved 3 January 2022.