The U.S. vehicle aftermarket for medium- and heavy-duty (MD/HD) truck components and parts is projected to increase at an annual rate of 3.9 percent, exceeding $12 billion in 2010, according to a market research firm.
A new study from The Freedonia Group Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research company, said some segments of the market such as electronics and emissions controls are expected to experience faster growth. Aftermarket revenue growth will result from both the expected increases in the overall truck segment and strong U.S. economic performance over the next five years.
Growth will be constrained by product improvements made by the original equipment manufacturers of MD/HD vehicles, Freedonia said.
As new trucks replace old, demand for maintenance- and overhaul-related parts and components will decelerate. However, ``new exhaust emissions control systems-especially those mandated for diesel engines-will provide new opportunities for MD/HD suppliers, as new technologies are added to the mix and resulting higher underhood temperatures place greater stress on engines and related components,'' the Freedonia report said.
The largest product category in the aftermarket will continue to be mechanical products, which include non-electric/electronic engine hard parts and chassis, drivetrain and suspension parts and components, the firm said in its report, Medium- & Heavy-Duty Truck Aftermarket. However, growth ``will be limited by the improved quality of these already highly durable products, as well as by the expected purchase of new vehicles over the next five years, which will reduce the overall MD/HD park's age and repair requirements,'' it added.
Electronic parts and components will witness the highest annual growth-a direct result of the continued transformation of MD/HD trucks from mechanical machines with electronic enhancements into software-driven devices, Freedonia said. Demand for electronic controls and modules will be strong, as will continued demand for telematics-related fleet management equipment.
But overall growth is expected to decelerate somewhat due to improving quality while replacement rates for electrical parts will remain relatively stable. Freedonia noted some categories will see demand suppressed due to new technologies such as highly durable light emitting diode (LED) lighting.
Freedonia also predicted growth in the exterior and structural parts category will dip slightly below average due to improved truck safety trends, resulting in lower accident rates.