PALO ALTO, Calif. (Aug. 15, 2006) — The more consumers and auto service technicians become aware of the use of cabin air filters (CAFs) in vehicles, the more aftermarket sales of the units will experience growth, according to an analysis by research firm Frost & Sullivan.
The company's recent study of the North American cabin air filters aftermarket reveals revenues of $44.1 million in 2005 from sales of CAFs, and the firm estimates that revenue will reach $178.3 million in 2012. Consistent growth in this aftermarket segment is due to improving sales of vehicles fitted with CAFs and an increasing number of vehicle owners realizing the importance of CAFs in enhancing air quality, the company said.
“Revenues for the CAF aftermarket are likely to increase as vehicle owners and service technicians become aware of the existence of CAFs in their vehicles and replace these filters regularly,” said Stephen Spivey, Frost & Sullivan industry analyst. “Integrating the replacement of CAFs with routine maintenance procedures such as oil changes can drive the aftermarket without a corresponding change in the installed base.”
However, market development is limited due to low consumer awareness. To achieve a significant growth rate, Frost & Sullivan added, manufacturers can proactively educate distributors as well as installers, who can in turn educate vehicle owners about the maintenance needs for CAFs. “This can be accomplished through sales training, consumer-oriented Web sites and installation instructions to help service technicians locate the filters and change them in real time,” Mr. Spivey noted.
Currently, cars and trucks are not factory equipped with CAFs due to cost and space constraints, Frost & Sullivan's report said, while leading auto makers only offer CAFs as an option in select models. That adversely affects the growth of the installed base.
The decline is likely to gradually change since a majority of consumers prefer dealer options that include a CAF as standard equipment in the purchased vehicle. “Growth rates are likely to increase as auto makers respond to consumer preferences for interior cabin filtration, which are available in imported vehicles,” Mr. Spivey said.