Survey: Thailand home to 3,200 tyre shops

New research suggests that Thailand is home to some 3,200 tyre shops. And what’s more roughly 50 per cent of fast fits are based in the Thai capital of Bangkok. According to research, which was conducted by well known market data analysts GfK, the automotive industry is on a roll, particularly in Thailand, which recorded a 47-month high of domestic automobile sales last November.

In response GfK recently launched its automotive business in Thailand, tracking sales of replacement passenger car tyres and batteries. According to GfK’s latest findings, while tyre specialists are “uniformly spread out across the country,” fast fit outlets make up a third of all shops and are more commonly found in Bangkok area where demand tends to be higher compared to the other regions.

Within the central region alone, more than one in two tyre specialist shops are fast fits. “Although faced with keen competition by some other rapidly developing markets in the region, its high growth automobile sector is still rendering Thailand the Detroit of Asia,” said Dr. Wichit Purepong, general manager of GfK Thailand. “In light of this, GfK, whose automotive business is currently already established in other key Asian markets like South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam, has expanded to cover Thailand so that we can now provide valuable insights on the rapidly developing industry in this market.”

Some other key automotive trends uncovered by GfK Thailand’s automotive retail audit, such as the dominance of six main starter battery brands, which contribute nearly 95 per cent of the total market sales. In addition, GfK findings reveal that conventional lead-acid batteries still take up the lion’s share of 80 per cent sales in the replacement market as compared to maintenance-free batteries which form the remaining 20 per cent.

“The Thai automotive sector is already thriving, but looking at the current market situation, there is definitely still more room for development; to allow for more players to enter the field. Having said this, automotive is big business in Thailand, and there is no doubt that the industry will remain very competitive and continue its upward growth trend for many years to come,” Dr. Wichit concluded.

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