2010 Tire Shipments to Increase Three Percent

Modest Recovery Anticipated In 2010 For Both Consumer and Commercial Sectors

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.March 12, 2010 - Tire shipments in 2010 are projected to increase by approximately 3 percent or approximately 7 million units to 267 million units, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association. Total shipments experienced an 8 percent drop in 2009 to 259.7 million units.

The increase in tire shipments reflects the onset of the economic rebound, an increase in vehicle miles traveled, and a slight uptick in auto sales. As a result, this rebound is projected to extend into 2011 reaching approximately 275 million units, as the economic recovery gathers momentum.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee forecast for key categories and their respective segments for 2010 include:

  • Original Equipment Passenger Tires:

Passenger OE shipments declined by nearly 35 percent in 2009 to 24.6 million units – a low point for recent history – attributable to the economy, and large vehicle production cuts. For 2010, light vehicle production is forecast to rebound slightly resulting in an approximate 21 percent increase in OE passenger tire shipments to nearly 30 million units.

  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires:

Consumer and commercial demand for LT OE tires were less severely impacted by the light vehicle production cuts. As a result shipments declined only 4 percent to 2.79 million units, a 100,000 unit year-over-year drop. For 2010 this category will experience a nearly 10 percent increase to more than 3 million units reflecting a strengthening economy.

  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires:

For 2009, this category decreased by 36.9 percent to 2.4 million units, attributable to the continued large economic slowdown in the commercial sector. For 2010, commercial activity is expected to pick up resulting in a nearly 8 percent increase, or approximately 180,000 additional units.

  • Replacement Passenger Tire:

The sluggish economy coupled with consumers looking to extract more miles out of their tires, contributed to a decline of 4.3 million units in 2009, representing a 2.2 percent decrease for a total of 189.5 million units. However this sector is forecast to increase by nearly 1.7 million units in 2010 – or approximately 1 percent as the measured economic recovery gains hold and the number of vehicle miles traveled increases.

  • Replacement Light Truck Tire:

This market segment realized a drop of 6.5 percent, or 1.9 million units, for a total of 27.5 million units in 2009 as soft economic conditions impacted small commercial vehicles. Given that the number of vehicles for this market remains steady, the soft economic conditions and fewer vehicle miles travelled will contribute to another nearly 1 percent decline in replacement LT tire shipments in 2010 to approximately 27.3 million units.

  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires:

This market declined to 12.9 million units in 2009, a decrease of nearly 2 million units or 13.2 percent. However, this market will realize an increase of approximately 600,000 units in 2010 as the economy picks up, and more goods are shipped.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee is comprised of tire market professionals representing the major U.S. tire manufacturers, which account for over 90percent of all U.S. tire shipments. Their analyses and forecasts of current and future industry activity include a review of RMA tire industry and economic data, government trade figures, and vehicle sales and production. TMAC develops its consensus view for tire demand from this process. The views expressed in this release are not the sole opinion of any one committee member, member company, or RMA representative.

RMA Says New EPA Report Again Demonstrates Tire Rubber As Environmentally Sound

No Adverse Human, Ecological Health Effects

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.December 10, 2009 - A study released today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found no cause for human health or environmental concerns with the use of tire rubber used in construction of athletic fields and playgrounds.

While the EPA study was limited in its scope, it adds to a growing list of scientific data showing that ground rubber from waste tires does not pose any adverse health or ecological risks.

“Today’s report by EPA is not a surprise,” said Michael Blumenthal, RMA vice president. “Many studies and tests have shown over many years that the use of recycled tire rubber in consumer applications such as playground and athletic fields are not only safe by have several significant safety benefits.”

Last year, RMA sponsored a review of available literature on the potential health and environmental effects of tire rubber, which is produced from scrap tires.

The RMA-sponsored report evaluated the health and ecological risks associated with the use of recycled tire rubber in consumer applications, particularly playgrounds and athletic fields. A thorough review of available literature was conducted including studies from both advocates and opponents to the use of recycled tire materials. An examination of the weight of evidence across all of the available studies was conducted to enable a comprehensive assessment of potential risk.

The use of recycled tire rubber is widely used as an infill material for synthetic sports fields and as a floor cover for playgrounds. Both applications take advantage of the exceptional cushioning characteristics of tire rubber and provide increased safety relative to other materials. Athletic fields and playground cover are two of the fastest growing and largest end uses for recycled ground tire rubber. Approximately 13 million scrap tires are used in these applications annually.

“Although EPA stated that hope to conduct further review of available scientific literature, we remain confident that any additional research will show that playgrounds and athletic fields and other consumer products made from tire rubber are environmentally sound,” Blumenthal said.

RMA’s report, Review of the Human Health & Ecological Safety of Exposure to Recycled Tire Rubber found at Playgrounds and Synthetic Turf Fields, is available for download at www.rma.orgClick here to review the report.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

RMA Statement on Nomination of David L. Strickland For NHTSA Administrator

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.December 8, 2009 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association supports the nomination of David L. Strickland as the next Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
RMA has worked with Strickland in his role as counsel to the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. He was involved in the Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation (TREAD) Act in 2000 and also worked with RMA to enact legislation to create a consumer information program for tire fuel efficiency in 2007.

“Dave Strickland will bring a unique set of qualifications to the position of NHTSA Administrator,” said Charles A. Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “Clearly, he is one of the most knowledgeable on Capitol Hill on tire safety issues.

“Dave has made an effort to understand the tire industry and we look forward to continuing to work with him in a new capacity. He is tough but fair and his experience working on tire and automotive industry public policy issues should allow him to hit the ground running at NHTSA. We wish him a speedy confirmation by the Senate.”

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Millions of Motorists At Risk — Survey Shows 11% of Vehicles With At Least One Bald Tire

 RMA Urge Motorists to Check Tread; Costs Just A Penny

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.November 19, 2009 - A survey of more than 7,000 vehicles revealed that more than 11 percent had at least one bald tire, which can increase the risk of a crash particularly in wet weather conditions that frequently occur during fall and winter months.

According to AAA, an estimated 33.2 million motorists will take to the road for Thanksgiving travel and that means nearly 4 million motorists could be at risk by driving on bald tires.

Additional alarming statistics revealed in a national motorist phone survey earlier this year found that 64% of car owners did not know how to check tread depth and 9% never check tread depth.

The surveys were sponsored by the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), the national trade association of tire manufacturers in the U.S. RMA is urging motorists to regularly check tire tread depth and replace worn out tires before they become a serious safety risk.

“In this bad economy, drivers may be delaying necessary vehicle maintenance to save costs,” said Charles Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “But that delay may cost you more dearly if worn out tires lead to a crash with injuries or fatalities.”

According to RMA checking tread depth is simple and only costs a penny. To do the “penny test,” take a penny; insert Abe Lincoln’s head upside down into the tread. If you can see all of his head, your tire is 2/32nds of an inch deep or less and should be replaced.

Tires also have “wear bars” built into them. These are indicators that appear when you have worn your tread down to the limit. These indicators are raised sections spaced intermittently in the bottom of the tread grooves. When they appear “even” with the outside of the tread, it’s time for tire replacement.

“Your tires literally keep your vehicle attached to the road,” Cannon said. “Bald tires are dangerous because they cannot grip the road properly, they increase stopping distances and can contribute to skidding or loss of vehicle control.”

Under wet weather conditions, bald tires can hydroplane, which can lead to a loss of vehicle control and increase the risk of a crash. When a vehicle hydroplanes, the tire is riding on a film of water.

Not only are too many motorists not paying attention to tread depth, they also are ignoring tire inflation pressure. Under inflated tires also pose a safety risk, wear out faster and increase vehicle fuel consumption.

A similar survey of more than 5,400 vehicles’ tire pressure conducted in March-May 2009, RMA found:

  • Only 9% of vehicles had four properly inflated tires.
  • 50% of vehicles had at least one under inflated tire.
  • 19% of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi).

Tire inflation pressure should be checked every month and before long trips. To properly check tire pressure, motorists should check once each month; check tires when cold – before the vehicle is driven and; use the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended pressure found on a label located on the driver’s door or door post or check the owner’s manual.

While basic tire maintenance only takes a few minutes each month, many tire retailers nationwide offer tire pressure and tread depth check at no charge.

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RMA collected tire tread depth information from more than 7,000 vehicles in 15 states between September 1 and November 3. The data was collected by several tire retailers that participate in RMA’s Be Tire Smart – Play Your PART tire maintenance education program.

The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Goodyear’s Rich Kramer Elected RMA Chairman of the Board

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.November 18, 2009 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association has elected Richard J. Kramer as Chairman of the Board of Directors. Kramer is Chief Operating Officer of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. He also serves as President of the company’s North American Tire business unit, a position he has held since March 2007.
Kramer succeeds Jim MacMaster, Executive Vice President, Business Division for Yokohama Tire Corporation.

“Jim MacMaster provided valuable time, energy and leadership during the past two years,” said Charles A. Cannon, RMA president and CEO. “We look forward to continued strong leadership with Rich Kramer.”
The RMA Chairman of the Board of Directors is elected to a two-year term. Kramer has served on the RMA board since 2007 and also has chaired RMA’s Finance Committee.

“A strong, effective trade association is crucial to ensuring that industry concerns and issues are heard by federal and state policymakers. I am looking forward to my term as RMA Chairman and working with my industry colleagues to address the public policy and regulatory issues and challenges before us.” Kramer said.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include more than 100 companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products. RMA members employ over 120,000 workers and account for more than $21 billion in annual sales.

2010 National Tire Safety Week Announced

 Tire Industry Urges Consumers to Maintain Tires to Save Fuel, Promote Safety

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.November 6, 2009 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association today announced the ninth Annual National Tire Safety Week will be held June 6-12, 2010.

The annual event is an initiative of the RMA’s “Be Tire Smart – Play Your PART” program, a year-round effort designed to help drivers learn the simple steps they can take to ensure that their tires are in good working condition. RMA is the national trade association for tire manufacturers.

Tire manufacturers and retailers nationwide will work to educate motorists about proper tire care and maintenance. RMA provides tire retailers, auto dealers and automotive repair shops with free “Be Tire Smart” brochures and other materials. Many participating retail outlets use the opportunity to promote tire care through advertising, promotions, free tire pressure checks and conducting media outreach.

More than 21,000 tire dealers, auto dealers and automotive repair shops participated during the 2009 National Tire Safety Week. RMA released a survey of more than 5,400 vehicles that showed half with at least one under inflated tire. Nearly 20 percent of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 8 pounds per square inch (psi). Under inflated tires waste fuel, risk safety and cause tires to wear out faster.

Partners in the Be Tire Smart program include tire retailers, auto dealers, safety advocates and state government agencies. Among the list of Be Tire Smart partners are: AAA, American Car Care Centers (ACCC), Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), Big 10 Tires, Belle Tire, Big O Tires, Costco, Discount Tire Co., Dunn Tire, Expert Tire, Firestone Complete Auto Care, GCR Tire Centers, Goodyear Auto Centers, Hyundai Motor America, Just Tires, Kaufman Tire, Les Schwab, Merchant’s Tire, Motorist Assurance Program, Recreational Vehicle Safety & Education Foundation, National Tire and Battery (NTB), National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), Northwest Tire, Peerless Tires, Pep Boys, Sears Automotive Centers, STS Tire and Auto Centers, Sullivan Tire and Auto Service, Tire Factory, Tire Industry Association (TIA), Tire Kingdom, Tire One, Tires Plus, Tire Warehouse, Town Fair Tires, VIP Parts, Tires and Service, Wal-Mart Tire and Lube Express and many others.

Tire and auto retailers who are interested in obtaining free RMA materials for National Tire Safety Week can order them online at www.betiresmart.org. Those who have participated in the event before can expect to receive materials again this year.

The Be Tire Smart program is funded by RMA’s tire manufacturer members: Bridgestone Americas, Inc., Continental Tire North America, Inc., Cooper Tire & Rubber Company, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, Michelin North America, Inc., Pirelli North America, Inc., Toyo Tire Holdings of Americas, Inc., and Yokohama Tire Corporation.

For more information on the Be Tire Smart Program and National Tire Safety Week visit www.betiresmart.org.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

2009 TIRE SHIPMENTS TO POST THIRTEEN PERCENT DECLINE

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

 Nearly 6 percent growth anticipated for 2010

WASHINGTON, D.C.November 2, 2009 - Tire shipments are projected to drop by approximately 13 percent in 2009 primarily due to sharp decreases in demand for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) passenger and commercial truck tires, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association.

Total 2009 tire shipments are projected to decline approximately 36 million units to 246 million units. This decrease reflects the difficult economic environment for automotive manufacturers over the past year, continued low consumer confidence and high unemployment. Tire shipments peaked at 321 million in 2000.

Vehicle miles travelled is on par with 2008 levels as the domestic economic conditions for both the consumer and commercial sectors appears to have stabilized and are poised for a rebound in 2010. As a result, the tire industry is expected to realize a nearly 6 percent growth in 2010 reaching the 260 million unit level.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee forecast for key categories and their respective segments for 2009 include:

  • Original Equipment (OE) Passenger Tires: Large decreases in domestic vehicle production due to plant shutdowns will result in a nearly 43 percent decrease in 2009 OE tire shipments to approximately 22 million units. The federal government’s “cash for clunkers” program pulled forward future years’ vehicle sales into 2009, which mitigated an even steeper drop in OE tire shipments. An improving economy and a rebound in vehicle production and sales are anticipated in 2010 resulting in a nearly 8 million unit increase projected for OE tire shipments. This projection does not account for any possible changes to the auto industry from further federal intervention or consumer incentive programs.
  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires: This category will experience an approximate 9 percent decrease, or 300,000 units, in 2009 to nearly 2.7 million units due to slower economic conditions and its impact on the commercial sectors which utilize light truck vehicles. Little or no growth is anticipated for 2010 as domestic vehicle production is projected to remain weak.
  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: A nearly 41 percent decline to approximately 2.3 million units is anticipated for 2009 – a decrease of approximately 1.6 million units. The economic rebound anticipated for 2010 along with pent up demand for vehicles is projected to result in a net gain of approximately 350,000 units.
  • Replacement Passenger Tire: Shipments will decrease approximately 12 million units to nearly 180 million units for an approximate 6 percent decline. Growth is anticipated to resume in 2010 with the replacement sector estimated to increase by approximately 4 million units, or about 3 percent, as economic conditions improve. Non-RMA imports accelerated in July and August prior to imposition of a three year Chinese import tariff on Sept. 26th. These imports are anticipated to drop off dramatically in October and remain at depressed levels through the three year period.
  • Replacement Light Truck Tire: This segment represents a core group of consumers and the small commercial vehicle market – mainly “class 3” trucks. The onset of the economic recovery has limited the impact of the decline in LT tire shipments to nearly 3 million units, or 11 percent, for a total of approximately 26 million units. Little or no increase is anticipated in 2010 in keeping with commercial economic forecasts and the impact of the Chinese tire tariff.
  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: The market is anticipated to decrease by approximately 2.3 million units in 2009 to nearly 12.6 million units. Given the uneven economic rebound forecast for 2010, this market is expected to increase by less than 1 million units to nearly 13 million units.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee is comprised of tire market professionals representing the major U.S. tire manufacturers, which account for more than 90 percent of all U.S. tire shipments. Their analyses and forecasts of current and future industry activity include a review of RMA tire industry and economic data, government trade figures, and vehicle sales and production. TMAC develops its consensus view for tire demand from this process. The views expressed in this release are not the sole opinion of any one committee member, member company, or RMA representative.

Tire Makers Propose Tire Fuel Efficiency Rating System

Five Category System Would Maximize Tire Choices for ConsumersRMA Comments submitted to NHTSA

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.August 24, 2009 - Tire manufacturers are proposing a tire fuel efficiency rating system that is more likely to assist motorists to choose fuel efficient replacement tires than a system proposed by federal regulators.

In written comments to a proposed tire fuel efficiency consumer information regulation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Rubber Manufacturers Association said its members believe that to establish effective consumer information requirements regarding tire efficiency, the program must meet the following:

• Provide information at point of sale;
• Provide meaningful information that is easy to understand by consumers;
• Provide a wide range of tire efficiency choices across the rating scale to each consumer about replacement tire choices appropriate for the consumer’s existing vehicle;
• Be cost effective to minimize the cost effect of this information to consumers.

RMA supports a five category rating system that maximizes the tire efficiency choices across the rating scale for available to each consumer.

“Since consumers shopping for replacement tires are limited in their tire selections by requirements of their existing vehicle, it is important to design a rating system that maximizes the tire efficiency choices across the rating scale for each consumer. The appeal of a rating system will depend on whether a consumer has “good” choices appropriate for his vehicle across the rating scale,” RMA wrote.

In June, NHTSA proposed a tire fuel efficiency rating system that would be printed on a paper label on every replacement passenger tire sold in the U.S. The rating system would rank tire fuel efficiency on a 0-100 point scale. The proposed rule also would rate wet traction capability and tread wear. The regulation was required by energy legislation enacted by Congress in 2007. RMA advocated in favor of the provision to create a tire fuel efficiency consumer information program.

RMA said that NHTSA’s proposed rating approach would not provide consumers with useful information about fuel efficiency of replacement tires suitable for their vehicles. Under the NHTSA proposal, a typical consumer shopping for a replacement tire for a specific vehicle would have a choice only along approximately a 20 to 30 point spread on the 100 point scale.

“The proposed rating scale gives consumers an illusory view of the tire efficiency choices available to them for their vehicle and does not assist consumers in purchasing fuel efficient tires for their vehicle,” RMA wrote. “On the other hand, this rating approach encourages consumers to purchase smaller tires and could promote the purchase of tires with inadequate load-carrying capacity to safely carry the load of the vehicle. Although many tire dealers would discourage and in many cases would not sell a tire with a rated load capacity insufficient for the vehicle, NHTSA should not promote a system that could lead to this type of safety concern.”

RMA said that NHTSA should develop a system that promotes tire efficiency, regardless of vehicle class.

“Unfortunately, since the proposed system would not favorably rate any tires suitable for larger vehicles, it would send the message to owners of these vehicles that they have no fuel efficient tire choices, so they should not base tire purchasing decisions on this information,” RMA wrote.

RMA also expressed opposition to the propose tire rating system label as a means of providing point of sale information to consumers.

“RMA proposes that NHTSA mandate that tire retailers have the rating information available to consumers in the dealer showroom or waiting area. RMA recommends that NHTSA give tire retailers options for making this information available and require that each retailer choose one or more options that suits their business model and needs. Options could include: tire manufacturer brochures, tire manufacturer product catalogues, in-store online access to the NHTSA website, tire manufacturer websites or the tire retailer’s website containing the rating information,” RMA stated.

RMA estimates that initial costs for manufacturer testing and reporting would range from $14,657,250 to $53,157,440, while annual costs range from $12,280,322 to $34,745,722. Initial costs for the proposed tire labeling requirements would range from $21,921,745 to $30,641,745, while the annual cost estimates range from $11,543,764 to $16,782,340. RMA said in its comments that NHTSA underestimated industry costs.

“The tire industry has long supported the concept of providing information to consumers about its products at point of sale and welcomes the opportunity to begin providing consumer information about a tire’s contribution to vehicle fuel economy,” RMA said.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

2009 Tire Shipments Revised to Drop Sixteen Percent

Sharper Decline In Original Equipment Tires Cited

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.August 10, 2009 - Tire shipments are projected to drop by approximately 16 percent in 2009 mainly as a result of a nearly 45 percent decline in Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) passenger tires and almost 43 percent drop in OEM Commercial truck tires, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association.

Total 2009 tire shipments are projected to decline approximately 45 million units to 237 million units. This level is approximately 84 million units less than the peak of 321 million units in 2000. The decrease in tire shipments reflects the recent struggles of automotive manufacturers, low consumer confidence, high unemployment, and depressed home values.

Vehicle miles travelled seem to have stabilized and domestic economic conditions for both the consumer and commercial sectors appear to have bottomed and are poised for a rebound in 2010. The tire industry is expected to realize a nearly 8 percent growth in 2010 reaching the 260 million unit level.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee forecast for key categories and their respective segments for 2009 include:

  • Original Equipment Passenger Tires: Large decreases in domestic vehicle production as a result of auto manufacturer production shutdowns and bankruptcy reorganizations will result in a nearly 46 percent decrease in 2009 shipments to approximately 21 million units. With the economy predicted to emerge from the recession in 2010, a rebound in vehicle sales and subsequent vehicle production is anticipated, which will result in a nearly 11 million increase in OE tire shipments in 2010. Note that this projection does not account for any changes to the auto industry as a result of further federal intervention or consumer incentive programs.
  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires: This category will experience an approximate 12 percent decrease, or 400,000 units, in 2009 to nearly 2.6 million units due to slower economic conditions and its impact on the commercial sectors which utilize light truck vehicles. There is continued consumer demand for vehicle fitments with P-Metric passenger tires in place of LT tires and as the economy gradually recovers in 2010, a nearly 100,000 unit gain is anticipated.
  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: Given the downward revisions in the economic conditions in the commercial sector, a nearly 44 percent decline to approximately 2.2 million units is anticipated for 2009– a decrease of over 1.6 million units. The economic rebound anticipated for 2010 along with pent up demand for vehicles is projected to result in a net gain of approximately 500,000 units increase in shipments.
  • Replacement Passenger Tire: As a result of the protracted economic downturn and the onset of economic recovery pushed closer to 2010, the market will realize another decrease of nearly 9 percent, or approximately 18 million units, reaching a level of 176 million units. Growth is anticipated to resume in 2010 with the replacement sector estimated to increase by approximately 5 million units, or slightly better than 3 percent, in tandem with the projected economic growth in the consumer sector.
  • Replacement Light Truck Tire: Although the number of vehicles for this market remains steady and largely represented by small commercial vehicles, further declines in economic conditions is forecasted to contribute to a nearly 18 percent decline in replacement LT tire shipments in 2009 to the 24 million unit level. An increase of nearly 8 percent is anticipated in 2010 in keeping with commercial economic forecasts.
  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: The market will realize another decrease of over 3 million units in 2009 to approximately 12 million units as a result of the protracted recovery. Given the uneven economic rebound forecast for 2010, this market is expected to increase by less than 1 million units to nearly 13 million units.

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    The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products.

Elastomer Products Group Publishes 8th Edition RMA Hose Handbook

For more information contact:
Dan Zielinski
(202) 682-4846
dzielinski@rma.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.August 3, 2009 - The 2009 revision of The RMA Hose Handbook is now available for purchase on the RMA website (www.rma.org). This new edition is provided as a full color electronic file, and includes important updates to reflect current practice for manufacturing methods, design tolerances, couplings, test methods, and general hose application.

The RMA handbook, first published in 1962, is an internationally recognized reference guideline on the selection and use of industrial hose, as prescribed by the member hose manufacturers of the Rubber Manufacturers Association. RMA hose publications are written and maintained by member engineering representatives from Eaton Corporation (Maumee, OH), Gates Corporation (Denver, CO), HBD/Thermoid, Inc. (Dublin, OH), Parker Hannifin Corporation (Cleveland, OH), and Veyance Technologies Inc. (Fairlawn, OH).

Also available at www.rma.org is the complete catalog of RMA technical publications, including other hose specifications and technical bulletins.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for the rubber products industry. Its members include companies that manufacture various rubber products, including tires, hoses, belts, seals, molded goods, and other finished rubber products. RMA members employ over 120,000 workers and account for more than $21 billion in annual sales.