The combination of political disruption and Brexit uncertainty made 2019 a tough year for the UK economy in general, so it is not surprising to learn that this was reflected in the overall passenger car tyre replacement market. According to the latest sell-out UK tyre replacement market data collated by analysts at GfK, the headline news is that both the value and the volume of the decreased in 2019. But there are reasons for hope, with signs of growth remaining in the value-rich SUV tyre sub-segment and with evidence of strong growth in sales of all-season tyres.
Larger capacity, increased comfort in the cabin and multi-terrain capabilities are just some of the reasons why motorists are continuing to choose SUVs when purchasing a new vehicle.
Indeed, SUVs and crossovers currently account for a third of the UK’s best-selling cars list of 2019 to date, with offerings from Nissan, Ford and Kia among the biggest sellers.
The size of the UK truck tyre market by sell-out unit volume fell 9.8 per cent in 2018 set against the backdrop of European import tariffs, according to GfK data presented at Autopromotec 2019. But what do the tell us about the effectiveness of the tariffs?
At the time of going to press, the President of the United States of America is mid-way through a state visit to the UK. Before he even landed on British soil, President Donald Trump stirred up controversy by tweeting his disparaging thoughts about London Mayor Sadiq Kahn. Whatever view one might hold about the propriety of Trump’s visit, we all know that 31-gun salutes and tea with the queen are about more than niceties. Sure enough less than 24 hours into the state visit, presidential talk turned to trade, with Trump backing out-going Prime Minister Theresa May to complete Brexit negotiations and promising a “phenomenal” trade deal between the US and UK. But all this is set against the backdrop of all-out trade war between the US and China at the same time that Europe is involved in somewhat more Cold War-esque trade skirmishes with China as well. The questions are: do such measures work? And what do they mean for the tyre business?
Sales of SUV tyres continue to drive growth in the UK 4×4 tyre replacement market, with UHP-orientated tyres growing even faster. According to the latest data provided by market analysts GfK, these trends have come while there have been no clear changes in the market’s brand segmentation, which suggests product mix and volume growth must be behind the improvement.
As part of our review of 2018, Tyres & Accessories asked market research specialists to give an overview of some of the key trends that have taken place in the UK car, 4×4 and light truck replacement tyre market trends during the course of the year. In doing so, we have a good foundation for looking forward into 2019 and beyond. What we found was that UK tyre replacement market is increasingly high-performance and increasingly high-value.
GfK’s Panelmarket data compares the period between November 2016 and October 2017 with November 2017 to October 2018. Reading left to right, the infographic below shows the percentage share of the panelmarket broken down by vehicle type (passenger car, 4×4 including SUV and light commercial vehicle); key changes in the panelmarket during the last 12 months broken down by rim diameter; brand tier split; and the two five tyre sizes.
2018 has been an important year for the European and UK truck tyre markets. With anti Chinese-produced truck tyre tariffs having been introduced in May, some sources – especially those focusing on retreading – are already reporting a positive uptick in demand as a result of reduced numbers of Chinese-produced tyres. But how does this translate into the new tyre market? Here Tyres & Accessories considers the latest data from market research specialists GfK, with a particular focus on the UK new truck tyre replacement market.
Apollo Vredestein says it is “well-placed to fulfil the UK demand” highlighted by data that was recently released by GfK Panelmarket. The tyre maker is referring to all-season tyres and opines that the Vredestein all-season range is “perfectly positioned to answer a trend which shows significant growth of all-season in SUV fitments and even more dramatic for ultra-high-performance tyres.”
There are signs of significant growth at the top end of the all-season tyre segment, with volume and value skyrocketing in the ultra-high performance tyre segment. According to GfK Panelmarket data comparing figures from July 2016 to June 2017 with the period between July 2017 to June 2018, sales of all-season tyres are up a healthy 9 per cent overall.
The latest data from market analysis specialists GfK suggests that the market is predominantly made up of regional usage 22.5-inch tyres – a trend that is increasing year-on-year. Here Tyres & Accessories takes a look at the latest market data from a number of sources in order to give an overview of current trends. This article focuses on data provided by GfK, but – owing to the fact that it is current hot topic – also analyses different estimates about how many tyres are made in China, something that is outside the scope of the data provided by GfK and therefore our conclusions on this point are something quite separate to GfK’s input.
In our February Car Tyre feature, Tyres & Accessories published some of the latest UK tyre replacement market trends data produced by GfK. That data suggested that SUV tyre sales data was a key driver of both increased rim size as well as volume and value growth in the market. This month, as part of our SUV tyres feature, we take a closer look at the trends in the 4×4 and SUV sector specifically and find that the trends are repeated and developed within the sector.