Retail Wholesale Distribution a competitive nightmare

Order Reprints a competitive nightmare

Is the next Tire Rack? Not exactly. Both sell tires online. But how they do it differs in one very important way. was created by Dealer Tire LLC, the second largest independent wholesale tire distributor in the United States. Dealer Tire found its niche by selling solely to car dealerships. Now it is re-entering the retail market, which it left in 2002.

( should not be confused with, a completely different entity.)

The purpose of the year-old online tire-buying site is to make it easy for consumers to "get the right tires installed at the right place, all for the right price." has one of the largest tire inventories in the world, according to its website.That is true, given Dealer Tire's 20 distribution centers. advertises on network television in prime time. It also uses a gimmick based on its name to promote itself on the streets.

When "opened" in Dallas, consumers were asked to keep their eyes open for the van, a vehicle that "only made right turns." A consumer catchng the van making a left turn could win a free set of tires.

Tire Rack has a national network of thousands of independent “recommended” installers. Discount Tire Direct has “qualified” installers, many of which are Discount Tire or America’s Tire dealerships.

Who installs tires for To find out, check out Modern Tire Dealer Editor Bob Ulrich's latest blog, " takes on Tire Rack and Discount Tire Direct."

What do you think about this potentially formidable competitor? Read the blog, then share your thoughts with the tire-selling community by leaving a comment!

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