A Robot Is Changing Tires in Arlington

RoboTire uses "state-of-the-art robotics and advanced algorithms" to change a vehicle's tires in a fraction of the time it takes humans to do it, "reducing an hour-long experience to under 25 minutes while maintaining the highest levels of safety," the startup says.

It might look like the high-tech factory floor at a General Motors or Ford Motor plant. But the elaborate robot system you see above is actually operating right now at a Discount Tire store in Arlington. And it could be a harbinger of the robot-ification of jobs, businesses, and industries across North Texas and beyond.

Founded in 2018, RoboTire uses “state-of-the-art robotics and advanced algorithms” to change a vehicle’s tires in a fraction of the time it takes humans to do it. The Michigan-based company says its system “reduces an hour-long experience to under 25 minutes” while maintaining the highest levels of safety,” speeding the process for both technicians and customers.

Arlington store is Discount Tire’s second to get the system

RoboTire zeroes in on a tire. [Video still: RoboTire]

The Arlington store at 5541 S. Cooper Street is the second Discount Tire location to install and operate the RoboTire system, following an earlier implementation at one of the company’s stores in Arizona. 

“Discount Tire is excited to have RoboTire’s technology installed in another one of our stores,” Christian Roe, chief revenue officer at Discount Tire, said in a statement. “The system will help our experts continue to provide the best service and experience to our customers.”

If Roe’s company decides to adopt the system globally, it’s going to need a lot of robots—Arizona-based Discount Tire operates 1,100-plus stores in 37 states.  

Discount Tire has invested in RoboTire

Discount Tire technicians are part of the RoboTire process. [Video still: RoboTire]

It’s no coincidence that Discount Tire is one of the first companies to implement the RoboTire system—it’s an investor in the robotics startup and has been “a critical partner” and “committed business contributor,” according to RoboTire.

RoboTire is now fast-changing tires in Arizona and Pennsylvania as well

RoboTire gets ready to snag a lug nut. [Video still: RoboTire]

In addition to the two Discount Tire locations, RoboTire says it has implemented its automated systems at a Creamery Tire location in Pennsylvania and several other retailers. The company plans to launch more systems in the coming months, and says it “constantly seeks new opportunities to bring its innovative technology to more stores’ customers.”

“We’re thrilled to bring our innovative technology to a second Discount Tire location,” RoboTire CEO Victor Darolfi said in the statement. “We’re committed to partnering with leading tire shops, improving the customer experience, and providing the best possible service.”

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