2012 Tire Shipments Unchanged

1.5 Percent Rebound Anticipated In 2013

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

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 3, 2013 – Tire shipments remained unchanged in 2012 at 284 million total units, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) as a 10 percent increase in OE shipments offset a nearly 2 percent decrease in replacement shipments.

The absence of overall growth can primarily be attributed to a cautious consumer as well as economic uncertainties in both the commercial and consumer sectors of the replacement market.

Nonetheless, there are several positive signs including, a declining unemployment rate, a rebound in housing, and increases in vehicle sales and vehicle miles traveled. These and other macroeconomic factors should result in approximately 288 million total tire shipments in 2013, an increase of approximately 4 million units or nearly 1.5 percent.

Original equipment (OE) tire shipments for both the light vehicle and commercial truck sectors increased 10 percent for 2012 due to increased demand for light vehicles and commercial trucks. A nearly 6 percent growth is forecast for 2013 as new vehicle demand is expected to increase light vehicle sales to more than 15 million.

Replacement tire shipments declined in 2012 to approximately 235 million total units – a nearly 5 million unit decrease, or about 2 percent decline. For 2013, a modest increase of 1 million units is anticipated as small growth is expected in the Gross Domestic Product and the Industrial Production Index for both the consumer and commercial sectors.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee report for key categories and their respective segments for 2012 and its forecast for 2013 include:

  • Original Equipment (OE) Passenger Tires: Passenger OE tire shipments increased by 12.1 percent to 40 million units in 2012, a 4.3 million unit improvement. This reflects the 1.7 million unit increase in light vehicle sales for 2012, reaching approximately 14.4 million light vehicles. For 2013, light vehicle sales are anticipated to increase another 4.2 percent and crest the 15 million unit mark. As such, 2013 OE passenger shipments are expected to increase more than 6 percent or approximately 2.7 million units.
  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires: Light truck OE tires increased 1.5 percent in 2012 to 4.3 million units as domestic vehicle production using LT tires experienced a marginal increase due to soft economic conditions in this sector. This category is forecast to grow by nearly 100,000 units in 2013, or approximately 3 percent.
  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: A increase in demand for commercial trucks and trailers in 2012 boosted commercial OE tire shipments by 2.6 percent, reaching approximately 5.1 million units. However, demand for new trucks is expected to level off in 2013 and little or no change in the total OE tire units is anticipated.
  • Replacement Passenger Tire: 2012 shipments decreased by 3.5 million units, or 1.8 percent, to 190.9 million units as anticipated demand failed to materialize due to continued soft economic conditions and cautious consumers. For 2013, improving economic conditions, positive signs of jobs added, and growth in vehicle miles traveled will be tempered by spending pressure on consumers. As a result passenger replacement shipments are forecast to increase by a modest 1 million units.
  • Replacement Light Truck Tire: Total 2012 LT replacement shipments was 28.1 million units, a decrease of approximately 500,000 units, or 1.9 percent. A nearly 1 percent growth is forecast for 2013 given the slowly improving economy and signs of improvement in the housing market.
  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: For 2012, this market declined by 4 percent, or 700,000 units, to 15.8 million units as fleets opt for new equipment and the economy remained sluggish. No increase is forecast for 2013 owing to a sluggish commercial sector.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for tire manufacturers that make tires in the U.S.

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.

2012 Tire Shipments Expected to Grow By 1.2 Percent

Slight Downward Revision Given Sluggish Economy

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

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 20, 2012 – Tire shipments in 2012 are projected to increase by approximately 1.2 percent – just over 3 million units- to 288 million units, according to the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA). The modest growth can attributed to the increase in new vehicle sales and a slight increase in vehicle miles traveled.

Original equipment (OE) tire shipments for both the light vehicle and commercial truck markets will be up nearly 16 percent for 2012 as continued pent up demand for both for light vehicles and commercial trucks will add to domestic new vehicle sales and production.

Growth in replacement tire shipments is expected to drop by approximately 2 percent, or nearly 4 million units, to 236 million total units in 2012. Overall the decline is moderated by the mild growth still projected in Gross Domestic Product and the Industrial Production Index for both the consumer and commercial sectors.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee forecast for key categories and their respective segments for 2012 include:

  • Original Equipment (OE) Passenger Tires: Passenger OE tire shipments are anticipated to increase by 7 million units, or slightly more than 18 percent, to 42 million units in 2012 as domestic vehicle production is expected to increase. Total light vehicle sales for 2012 were revised to greater than 14 million vehicles, from 12.8 million vehicles sold in 2011. Additionally, improved OE tire shipments for 2012 vs. 2011 are partially attributed to the rebound in vehicle inventory and availability, which was affected by the 2011 Japanese earthquake/tsunami.
  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires: A nearly 1 percent increase is anticipated for 2012 as domestic vehicle production using LT tires will experience a small increase tempered by soft economic conditions in this commercial sector. As a result, this category is forecast to be 4.2 million total units.
  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: Pent up demand for commercial trucks and trailers concurrent with a forecasted 4 percent increase in the Industrial Production Index in 2012 will enable this sector to grow by 12 percent in 2012, or nearly 600,000 units, or 5.5 million units total.
  • Replacement Passenger Tire: Shipments in 2012 are forecasted to decrease by approximately 2 million units, or nearly 1 percent, to 192 million units as pent up demand has failed to materialize. This is attributed to, in-part, softer economic conditions than previously forecasted. Vehicle miles travelled for 2012 has increased, in part due to the mild winter. As a result, an uptick in replacement shipments is forecasted for the second half of 2012.
  • Replacement Light Truck Tire: A decrease of approximately 900,000 units, or 3 percent, is expected for 2012 such that the total LT replacement market will decline to 28 million units. This is a result of 2012 new light truck vehicle sales decreasing demand for replacement tires. However, the decline will be moderated by anticipated stronger second half growth in 2012 given the soft market conditions in the latter part of 2011.
  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: For 2012, this market is forecasted to decline by approximately 6 percent, about 1 million units, to 15.5 million units as fleets opt for new equipment and the economy remains sluggish.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for tire manufacturers that make tires in the U.S.

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.

2011 Tire Shipments to Grow Nearly One Percent

Two Percent Increase Anticipated For 2012

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

WASHINGTON, D.C.December 2, 2011 - The Rubber Manufacturers Association lowered its 2011tire shipment forecast to 287 million total units, which represents a nearly one percent increase or approximately two million units more than 2010. This is a result of downward revisions in year-end economic growth in the U.S. economy.

For 2012, the forecast remains guardedly optimistic as U.S. economic growth is anticipated to remain slow. As such, overall tire shipments are forecasted to increase by more than two percent reaching a total of over 290 million total units. Persistently high fuel costs, a decrease in miles driven by consumers plus moderating growth in the commercial replacement tire sector have led to a restrained outlook.

RMA’s Tire Market Analysis Committee 2011 forecast for key categories include:

  • Original Equipment (OE) Passenger Tires: OE tire shipments were revised slightly lower to approximately 35 million units, a 5.4 percent increase over 2010, as a result of decreased vehicle production related to supply chain disruptions due to the natural disasters in both Japan and Thailand. The forecast for 2012 is for an approximate 13 percent increase, to nearly 40 million OE units, as available credit and attractive vehicle prices are expected to drive vehicle sales.
  • Original Equipment Light Truck (LT) Tires: This category is forecasted to experience a nearly 15 percent increase in 2011 to approximately 4.2 million units due to the shift to larger vehicles as a result of more fuel efficient pickups and improved economic conditions in commercial sectors that utilize light trucks. However, a 7 percent decrease, or approximately 300,000 units for a total of 3.9 million units, is forecasted for 2012. This is a consequence of a trend towards light trucks built on car-based platforms instead of truck-based platforms owing to increased vehicle fuel mileage standards and consumer demand.
  • Original Equipment Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: The forecast for commercial OE tire shipments was revised upward for 2011 to approximately 54 percent, reaching nearly five million total units. This underscores the pent up demand for commercial trucks and trailers concurrent with a predicted nearly four percent increase in the Industrial Production Index. For 2012, the forecast is for an additional nearly 10 percent increase as pent up demand offsets a slowing economy.
  • Replacement Passenger Tire: The forecast for this category was revised to show a decrease of approximately two percent for 2011 as vehicle miles driven have declined, energy costs remain high, and continued economic uncertainty weighs on the consumer. The decrease represents a drop of approximately four million units for 2011 with total passenger replacement units reaching approximately 196 million units. For 2012, less than one percent growth is forecasted – representing an approximate one million unit increase – as economic growth continues to remain sluggish and vehicle miles driven ticks up slightly.
  • Replacement Light Truck Tire: This category, represented by small commercial vehicle market – mainly “class 3” trucks, was revised downward to an approximate two percent increase in 2011 – a growth of approximately 700,000 units or nearly 29 million total units. The downward revision was primarily attributed to the slower than expected recovery in the light truck category as well as change in light truck platforms to car platforms, which began in 2008. For 2012, no further increase is anticipated as the economy is expected to remain weak.
  • Replacement Medium/Wide-Base/Heavy On-Highway Commercial Truck Tires: The forecast for this market will remain strong for 2011 as commercial trucking has grown concurrent with the increase in the Industrial Production Index. As such, the market is anticipated to increase by approximately 1.5 million units in 2011 to nearly 17 million units. For 2012, an additional 800,000 units are anticipated as the IPI is forecasted to continue to grow by over two percent.

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association is the national trade association for tire manufacturers that make tires in the U.S.

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.