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Cooper Tire Class Action Settlement Approved

FINDLAY, Ohio, Sept. 13 COOPER TIRE & RUBBER COMPANY today said it was pleased that a New Jersey court has approved an agreement which will benefit our customers by extending and enhancing the existing warranties on their tires, enhancing the reliability of its tires and educating the public about tire safety.

The agreement, which previously received preliminary court approval last October, resolves a series of class action lawsuits filed against the company during 2000 and 2001. There was never a claim of personal injury or property damage involved in the lawsuits nor did anyone in the case ever ask for a recall. The company denies any wrongdoing or legal liability but agreed to offer an enhancement of existing warranties as the company's vote of confidence in its tires' durability and safety.

"This settlement proves we are committed to customer service and satisfaction," said Cooper's chairman, president and chief executive officer, Tom Dattilo. "We stand by our tires. And, this settlement reflects our confidence in the safety and durability of our product. The final order was a confirmation of the original settlement and the amount of money reserved in the third quarter of 2001 should be sufficient to pay any future claims. We are pleased to put these lawsuits behind us."

The agreement includes a five-year program offering a free replacement tire to consumers in the unlikely event a steel belted radial tire (produced from 1985 through 2001) has an adjustable separation. There will be no cash award to plaintiffs as a part of the settlement.