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RMA: 195.7 million replacement passenger units shipped in 2006

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According to the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), there were 195.7 million replacement passenger tire shipped in the United States last year, down 3.2% from 2005. Original equipment shipments were down 8.6%.

The passenger tire shipment data is just part of the information published in the RMA's Preliminary Factbook 2007, which reports U.S. tire shipment activity for 2006. Shipments by brand type, tread design and speed rating also are broken out.

Brand type: Major brands made up 67% of the total domestic replacement passenger tire shipments and 69% of the light truck tire shipments. Associate brands accounted for 16% and 14%, respectively. Private brands made up 17% in both segments.

Tread design: Close to 84% of passenger OE shipments were all-season tires, while 2.2% were traction and snow treads (which include winter, all-terrain and traction treads). In the replacement segment, all-season tires made up 80.5% of the total; traction and snow treads accounted for an additional 4.1%.

Speed ratings: The RMA says more V-rated tires were shipped at OE than H-rated, but more Z-rated replacement tires were shipped than than V-rated.

H -- 4.4 million OE, 30 million replacement.

V -- 5.8 million OE, 9.4 million replacement.

Z -- 1.6 million OE, 9.5 million replacement.

Light truck tire shipments are more difficult to compare to the previous year because starting in 2006, the RMA removed service trailer tires from the light truck tire category. Conversely, heavy truck tire shipments were added to truck and bus tire shipments in 2006.

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