MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (Oct. 17, 2014) — Strengthening safety regulations and aging vehicles will bolster growth in the heavy-duty brakes market for the next five years, according to a new Frost & Sullivan Inc. research report.
Brake pads and shoes for Class 4-8 trucks will grow by 4.6 percent annually, to an estimated $342.5 million by 2020 from $267.5 million in manufacturer-level revenue this year, according to Frost. Forecasts call for 5.9 million brake shoe sets and 1.1 million pad sets in 2014, with demand for pneumatic brake shoes outpacing hydraulic parts.
By contrast, Frost forecasted revenue growth for brake pads and shoes in the Class 1-3 light-duty vehicle segment will range around 4 percent annually over the same period.
Class 4-5 trucks are mostly equipped with hydraulic brakes, while Class 7-8 trucks tend to have pneumatic systems. Class 6 trucks are about evenly split between hydraulic and pneumatic brake systems.
Nearly all Class 8 trucks are equipped with drum brakes, but in Classes 4-6 vehicles disc brakes are more common. However, the large number of trucks in Class 8 — about 3.2 million, nearly half of the 6.7 million for all of Class 4-8 — skews total market demand in favor of the largest vehicles, according to the report.
Distribution channels in the Class 4-8 aftermarket differ from the light-duty Class 1-3 OES (Original Equipment Supplier) segment, which accounts for only 12-15 percent of passenger car and light truck brake pad sales and captures about 40 percent of revenue in Class 4-8 mainly because it is a more specialized job that requires a higher degree of training to perform, and also because there are very few retail outlets to support it, according to Frost. This drives more heavy-truck operators back to dealerships for brakes maintenance, it said.
Meritor Inc., formerly ArvinMeritor, is the dominant market leader in Class 4-8 friction, Frost claimed. The company divested itself of its light-duty automotive business over the 2008-10 period to focus on higher growth opportunities in the commercial vehicle industry, including aftermarket components.
In the rotors and drums market, manufacturer-level revenue for Class 4-8 vehicles will experience a compound annual growth rate of 2.9 percent, from $728 million in 2014 to $887.5 million in 2019.
For passenger cars and light trucks, the revenue growth rate is expected to be about 1.9 percent annually. Revenue will increase to $1.22 billion in 2020 from $1.07 billion this year.
However, the growth outlook is hampered by the slow U.S. economic recovery, Frost said. Assuming that GDP growth rates increase in the coming years, demand for medium- and heavy-duty truck brakes could rise even higher as these vehicles spend more time on the roads delivering products to customers.