WASHINGTON-Tire shipments to the U.S. replacement market ended the first month of 1994 with increases in nearly every tire category, compared with January 1993. The lone exception came in tractor implement tires where aftermarket shipments fell 8.7 percent from the year-ago month, according to Rubber Manufacturers Association data.
Shipments of original equipment tires to vehicle makers also got off to a good start in January, with the exception of heavy and large off-the-road truck tires.
This category fell 6.2 percent from the year-ago month, affected by a 31 percent decline in OE shipments of heavy truck tires. Large OTR truck tires, the other part of this cateogry, experienced a 49.7 percent increase in monthly OE shipments. But with fewer large OTR tires shipped, the gain was not enough to offset the downturn in heavy truck tires.
In passenger tires, aftermarket shipments grew 13.9 percent in January to 12.8 million units vs. the corresponding 1993 month, while OE shipments increased 19.6 percent to 4.8 million tires.
Light truck tire shipments posted even better gains, with aftermarket shipments up 15.7 percent to 1.95 million units for the month and OE shipments increasing 27.6 percent to 472,000 units.