Head Over Heels: After Brief Uptick, June Results Show Sharp Sales Fall  - Tire Review Magazine

Head Over Heels: After Brief Uptick, June Results Show Sharp Sales Fall 

Dealer comments and survey results this month continue to reflect dealers’ growing concerns about the state of the economy. Fuel prices remain the biggest concern, with more than 70% of independent tire dealers specifically naming the price of gas as their top concern. Translated into consumer reaction, tire and service sales at our panel of more than 100 tire dealers nationwide dropped dramatically in June.

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The Tire Review Dealer Panel reported a weak May in retail passenger tire unit sales vs. the same month last year. Preliminary numbers for June show a significant drop in consumer purchases of about 3.5% compared to June 2007. In the individual tire segments, unit sales of broadline and high performance units are running 3% to 4% behind 2007, while light truck/SUV tire unit sales are down 2%.

Service Dollars
After rebounding in April and May, sales of both undercar and underhood services dropped significantly in June. Preliminary June figures are now running about 2% behind 2007 levels. Final May results showed undercar service sales up 1% vs. May 2007, while underhood service was up 1.8% against the same period.

Dealer Comments
Dealer Panel member comments provide helpful insights to issues facing tire dealers today:
• People are not driving as much and this brings the tire sales down.
• The economy keeps going farther and farther down. When is it gonna stop?
• Cars coming in are in such a mess that you can’t help but think that accidents are up.
• People are running their tires longer so service is down. It is a very poor time for the economy.

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