Gentyre Pty Ltd. then - The General Tyre and Rubber Company (SA) Pty Ltd - was established in 1947by the Williams Hunt Group, South Africa, and General Tyres International in Akron, Ohio.
The manufacturing facility was built in Port Elizabeth in 1948 and by the end of 1950, tyres, tubes and repair materials were being sold in South Africa, the Rhodesias (now Zambia and Zimbabwe), Nyasaland (Malawi) and South West Africa (Namibia).
The Company continued to expand through the 1950's and in the early 1960's General steelbelted radial ply tyres were introduced in the market.
In 1978, General Tyre in South Africa concluded a technical service agreement with Continental AG in Germany - the first formal association between the two companies - which gave the Company access to the technology required to build high performance steelbelt radial ply tyres in South Africa.
In 1985, the association was further consolidated when Continental in Germany approved the production of Continental branded products by General Tyre at its factory in Port Elizabeth.
Continental tyres were launched in South Africa in 1986 and quickly achieved success in both the original equipment and replacement markets.
Internationally, the 1987 acquisition of General Tyre USA by Continental AG, further reinforced the association between the Continental and General brands in South Africa and helped create new product opportunities.
A major milestone for General Tyre in South Africa - and an important acknowledgement of the company's technical capability - was the approval for Continental branding of a range of South African designed and developed recreational vehicle (RV) tyres - which had previously been marketed as General branded products.
The General Tyre and Rubber Company also introduced Continental commercial steelbelted radial ply tyres - where they have been particularly well received in the uniquely South African minibus taxi market. Limited numbers of imported Continental heavy truck tyres have been introduced in South Africa and exciting opportunities exist for the local manufacture of these and other giant truck tyres.
Offering outstanding tyre life and excellent value for money, General branded products remain a South African favourite and have a high level of acceptance in other Southern African markets.
In 1994, the General Sportiva range of steelbelted radial ply tyres, based on a highly successful European design, was launched in South Africa at the upper end of the economy segment of the market and has set new standards for General in the domestic passenger tyre market as a tyre offering modern features and affordable all-round performance.
General crossply and radial ply light and heavy truck tyres have a long-established reputation in South Africa as dependable, durable, hard-working tyres and are found in every industrial, commercial, building and haulage application.
South African agriculture as well as the mining and logging industries are extensively supplied with locally manufactured General tyres. As with all Gentyre products, these are backed by comprehensive after-sales, service and technical support from the factory and by a nationwide dealer and field service network.