Tire shipments to the U.S. replacement market were mixed in March, with passenger and light truck tires improving from the same period a year ago and medium and wide base and heavy truck tires declining.
Aftermarket shipments of heavy truck tires experienced the steepest downturn, compared with year-ago figures, falling 27.8 percent in March and 15 percent for the first three months of the year, the latest data from the Rubber Manufacturers Association shows.
Shipments of commercial truck tires also fell slightly, less than 1 percent in March but remain 8.8 percent ahead of 2001's year-to-date totals.
On the plus side, replacement passenger tire shipments ticked up, although less than 1 percent, for the month and improved 5.4 percent for the quarter, the data showed.
As for light truck tires, aftermarket shipments grew 6.8 percent in March and were 5.3 percent ahead of last year's quarter.