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New York, NY, 03/29/2022

GfK POS data reveals dramatic regional differences in US tire prices, sales trends

While inflation has been hitting almost every product category throughout the US, new reporting from GfK shows that replacement tire prices and sales trends varied dramatically by region over the past year.

GfK is now delivering weekly, regional data from its POS (point-of-sale) panel of US tire retailers, and the new analyses reveal many striking contrasts among the nine regions covered. For example, the Middle Atlantic states posted a remarkable 19% rise in revenue in 2021, with $2 billion in sales. (See Table 1.) While New England placed second in growth, it produced just $500 million in sales.

Middle Atlantic also led in unit growth, at 12%, with roughly 12 million tires sold. New England again came in third in terms of increase, at 7%, but it recorded just 4 million units.

Table 1. Regional 2021 tire sales trends

REGION

Dollars
% chg vs. 2020

Dollars
($B)

Units
% chg vs.2020

Units
(M)

Total US

9%

$13

4%

82

Middle Atlantic

19%

$2

12%

12

New England

15%

$0.5

7%

4

West North Central

14%

$1

3%

7

East North Central

13%

$2

5%

12

South Atlantic

13%

$2

8%

13

East South Central

12%

$1

6%

4

West South Central

7%

$2

0%

12

Mountain

0%

$1

-3%

6

Pacific

0%

$2

-1%

12

Source: GfK POS tire tracking panel (US)

Nationally, average tire prices grew 6% – but regional price increases ranged from 10% in West North Central to just 3% in Pacific. (See Table 2.)

Comparing 2021 to 2019 – a two-year period – we find that prices have risen 7% overall, with regions varying from 5% to 11%.

Table 2. Average price change by US tire market segment by region 
Week ending 1/1/22

US regions

% change 2021 vs. 2020

% change 2021 vs. 2019

Overall

6%

7%

West North Central

10%

11%

New England

8%

10%

East North Central

7%

7%

West South Central

7%

6%

East South Central

6%

8%

Middle Atlantic

6%

8%

Mountain

6%

10%

South Atlantic

4%

7%

Pacific

3%

5%

Source: GfK POS tire tracking panel (US)

Sales trends over the past one and two years did not always align with price increases. For example, GfK’s data shows that the South Atlantic region reported strongest sales, at $13 million, yet had second lowest price increases (4%).

Further breaking down the tire segment, we see that prices for tires measuring 18 inches or more rose more than those 17 inches and under. (See Table 3.) This trend was likely driven by people embracing outdoor activities during the pandemic.

Table 3. Average price change by US tire market segment

Week ending 1/1/22

Segment

% change 2021 vs. 2020

% change 2021 vs. 2019

Overall

6%

7%

18”+ rim diameter

6%

6%

17" & under rim diameter

4%

5%

“To set the right prices, retailers need to know not just the pace of inflation, but also the price and sales trends for their regions and the country at large,” said Neil Portnoy, EVP and Managing Director of GfK’s POS Tracking (Tires) team. “Having prices significantly lower than the rest of the market – or sellers in nearby areas – can leave money on the table and drive out of stocks. Our data gives manufacturers and sellers alike a geographically specific, near-real-time look at what is selling where and for how much.”

Representing over 26,000 points of sale nationwide, GfK’s POS tire panel provides unprecedented data to inform dealer and manufacturer decisions.  GfK’s data allows manufacturers and retailers to understand – for the first time – country-wide trends, competitor activities, sale prices, and brand market share. 



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