Michelin: Political and Economic Instability Slowed UK CV Tyre Recovery

Following the recession of 2008 and 2009, in the most recent part of this year there has reportedly been “an about turn” in market truck tyre demand. However, the commercial vehicle sector’s recovery is said to be much slower in the UK than in Europe. Tyres & Accessories spoke to Michelin UK’s head of marketing – Truck, Earthmover, Martin Covington, who explained how the market’s recent history has been “a very competitive 18 months.”

While Michelin reports that truck tyre volumes in Europe shot up 28.7 per cent during the first half of 2010. The UK market recovery appears to be much more gradual, rising just 6 per cent in the same period. (The niche Republic of Ireland market flew up 42 per cent, but this figure is based on the market’s relatively small volumes rapidly recovering from a low base). “OE has obviously been poor, but replacement hasn’t been as much better as it should have been,” Covington commented, pointing out that economic and political instability hit haulier confidence in the first half of the year. Interestingly (happenstance or not) the market’s return to form appears to have coincided with the formation of the current coalition government following the general election.

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