MANAGING 10-50 COMPANY VEHICLES
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Replacement Tires

Most of the subject matter experts that we spoke to expect an increase in tire prices, although predicting future tire costs is difficult due to variables that influence tire pricing.

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Upward Pricing Pressuring Fixed and Operating Costs

Fleets are being impacted by a variety of inflationary pressures ranging from higher acquisition prices due to the proliferation of onboard safety equipment, to increased material costs pushing up pricing on parts, upfits, and replacement tires.

Replacement Tire Costs Increased 8% in 2018

Upward cost pressures on replacement tires have emerged in 2018, due to higher cost for the commodities used to manufacture tires and the trend to larger diameter 17- to 18-inch wheels, which are more expensive to replace.

Tire Prices Increase Due to Higher Commodity Costs

Higher commodity prices are putting upward pressure on fleet prices for replacement tires. National accounts are no longer as willing to absorb the majority of price increases, which are between 3%-8% on select tire lines.

Replacement Tire Costs Increase 5-10%

For the past four years, tire costs have been stable. But, new cost pressures have emerged in 2017, due to higher prices for the commodities used to manufacture tires and the trend to larger diameter, more expensive tires.

Operating Costs Flat for Third Consecutive Year

Calendar-year 2015 marks the third consecutive year that fleet operating costs have remained stable compared to the past three years, primarily due to the continuing softness in gasoline and diesel prices. Replacement tires, the second highest operating cost, were stable due to the ongoing softness in commodity prices, primarily rubber and oil, while increased maintenance intervals contributed to lower maintenance costs for fleets. The forecast is more of the same for CY-2016.

Impact of Chinese Truck Tires on Fleet Aftermarket

One factor driving the deluge of Chinese exports of replacement truck tires to the U.S. is China's immense tire production overcapacity. In 2015, China manufactured 120 million tires, with an overcapacity rate of almost 25 percent. The influx of Chinese truck tires is also having a detrimental effect on the tire retreading industry, because many of these “bargain” tires have only one life because they cannot be retreaded.

Time Capsule: Circa 1918 Dodge Tire Service Truck

Automotive services are not a new phenomenon as this circa 1918 Dodge service truck attests. The truck was operated by Peter Dziadik's Tire Shop in Peekskill, N.Y., from about 1918 to the late 1920s.