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Passenger tire shipments fell 2.8%, says RMA

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The Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) released the preliminary edition of its "2012 Factbook" on Feb. 10. The publication is a report on tire shipment activity in the United States for 2011.

Compared to 2010, the replacement numbers were up. Or down. Or flat.

In the domestic replacement market, passenger tire shipments were down 2.8% (from 200.6 million units to 195 million), while light truck tire shipments were relatively flat (from 28.7 million to 28.5 million). Truck and bus tire shipments were up 4.4% (from 15.8 million to 16.5 million).

Original equipment shipments rose in each segment. Passenger tire shipments were up 7.8% (to 35.7 million), light truck tire shipments were up 16.6% (to 4.2 million) and truck tire shipments were up 53.1% (to 4.9 million).

Consumer (passenger and light truck) and commercial (medium, heavy and wide-base) tire exports were down slightly, from 28.5 million to 28.4 million, while tire imports also were down less than 1%, from 140.7 million to 140.2 million. Overall RMA production was down 2.9% for passenger tires, up 9.2% for light truck tires, and up 15.4% for truck tires.

Manufacturers accounted for 81% of replacement passenger tire shipments (up from 80%) and 82% of light truck tires (up from 81%). Here's the breakdown of replacement shipments by brand-type:

Type                      Passenger   Light truck

Manufacturers     81%               82%

Associate             10%                  9%

Private                      9%                 9%

Independent tire dealers accounted for 66% of passenger tire shipments and 79% of light truck tire shipments (based on first point of distribution).

For more statistical information, see "RMA: At least last year, winter tires ruled."

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