WASHINGTON (Dec. 15, 2009)—The half-year tire shipments report by the Rubber Manufacturers Association shows just how far the industry tumbled in the first six months of 2009, compared with the same 2008 period.
Though June—the most recent data released by the organization—shipments of replacement passenger tires in the U.S. fell 11.9 percent to 87.4 million units, while those for light truck tires slid 18.8 percent to 12.4 million units. Half-year shipments of replacement truck and bus tires fared much the same, declining 21.7 percent to 5.83 million tires.
Original equipment shipments in all tire segments monitored by the RMA fell even more precipitously. Those for passenger tires slid the worst, declining 54.3 percent from 2008's corresponding period to 9.86 million tires. Next were truck and bus tires, down 45.5 percent through June to 1.15 million tires. OE shipments of light truck tires were less hard hit, off 11.8 percent to 1.33 million units.
Imports of these tires also experienced steep declines during the period, falling 22.7 percent, 28.9 percent and 40.1 percent for passenger, light truck and truck and bus tires, respectively.