It’s not quite time to break into a rousing chorus of “Happy Days Are Here Again,” but we appear to be getting closer.
Our nationwide panel of retail tire dealers indicates that tire unit and automotive service sales picked up in October – with all tire and service segments rebounding from a poor September – and sales are now even with last year through October.
In final September 2009 results, the Tire Review Dealer Panel reported tire sales were 2% lower vs. September 2008. The light truck/SUV segment saw the worse results, off 2.3% year-over-year. Preliminary results for October, though, show a definite uptick in retail demand in UHP, light truck/SUV and broadline – with unit sales slightly higher than October 2008.
September service sales show both undercar and underhood returns running about 2% off from last year’s levels. By comparison, throughout most of 2009, service sales had been consistently running 4%-5% below 2008 levels. Preliminary October service sales results are even or slightly ahead of last year.
Dealer Panel member comments reflect concerns over the economy and tire supplies:
• Things appear to be picking up!
• We’re just waiting for things to pick up.
• We can’t get tires.
• Starting to see prices creep up from tariff and other increases.
Become a Contributor
If you would like to participate as a regular contributor to this important study, contact Marketplace Insights at [email protected], or call 920-487-8020.