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Where It All Started—Atturo Tire

Posted By: Evan J. Smith
Where It All Started—Atturo Tire
Written by Ainsley Jacobs
Photography courtesy of the manufacturer
Michael Mathis didn’t just wake up one day and decide to start his own tire manufacturing company, but rather his lifelong involvement in the industry inspired him to create something that enthusiasts all over the world could appreciate.
Fascinated by all types of vehicles from hot rods to European exotics and inspired by his father, Don Mathis, who worked in the tire business, one of Mathis’s first vehicles was a Boyd Coddington truck. Growing up in St. Louis, Missouri, Mathis regularly attended off-road events, car shows, and participated in track days as much as he could. He moved to the Chicago area in his 20s, and Atturo was born in nearby Waukegan, Illinois, and remains there today.
“It was through my father’s experience and his relationships that we had an opportunity to take on some excess production from a facility that he had known for a long time,” explained Mathis, now 51 years old, of what prompted him to found Atturo Tire in 2009. “We wanted to build high-performance tires, and the initial market segment we went into was for performance SUVs since that was growing rapidly at the time.”
The Porsche Cayenne, BMW X5, and other vehicles paved the way for Atturo’s initiation into the industry with its Ultra High-Performance category tire. “Outside of OEM brands, there were very few options for these vehicles with low profile tires in staggered sizes,” Mathis added. Atturo tire solved that problem by focusing its product development on creating UHP tires to meet the demand and it did so while emphasizing overall value per dollar. 
Although market trends steered Atturo into the SUV, light truck, crossover, off-road, and 4x4 segments, in recent years, things have shifted such that the company refocused on its initial mission to create tires for traditional sports cars and passenger vehicles.
In 2022, Atturo released its first official drag radial, the D.O.T.-compliant AZ850DR, and entered the market category at an affordable price point to allow enthusiasts to experience the kind of performance from their vehicles that they may have previously been excluded from due to cost.
While radial racing tires may look pretty simple at first glance, Atturo’s technical development teams work hard to create tread patterns with different voids and grooves that will function on the street and can handle wet weather without sacrificing performance on the track, while still delivering aesthetic appeal. Available in 18-, 19-, and 20-inch sizes, the AZ850DR’s directional tread, extra-wide shoulder tread to improve launches, large center contact strip for straight-line stability, and ultra-sticky rubber made it an instant success with enthusiasts.
“From a tread compound standpoint, too, we focus on developing something that’s responsive but won’t degrade too quickly, either,” continued Mathis. 
With the advent of longer-format half-mile and standing-mile events, as well as roll racing, it’s not unusual to see speeds exceeding of 180 mph. “So, we’ve been mindful to accommodate these significantly higher speed ratings in our drag radial tires, too,” he added.
With five individual warehouses in the United States, one in Central America, one in South America, one in Europe, and distribution networks in more than 30 countries, Atturo Tire is properly positioned to deliver its full line of tires to racers and enthusiasts everywhere from the United States to Australia, Brazil, and beyond – whether they need tires for their race car, their tow vehicle, or both.

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