Market Snapshot


Perhaps it’s the winter period of test and tune, teardown and analysis, but parts and accessories for auto racing is currently one of the hottest categories in online auction sales. From its 2007 peak in the last week of February, the category slowly declined throughout the spring and summer, reaching its lowest point in late August, according to data from Terapeak, a developer of market-focused research software that monitors online sales and auctions.

But the category jumped 14% by the end of September, climbed an additional 16% a month later, then another 16% by Thanksgiving. As of the second week of December, the entire segment was only 3% off its spring peak.

Driveline and transmission parts helped drive much of the growth, hitting a 2007 high during the last week of November. Rearends specifically jumped dramatically, up 55% from November 2 through December 6.

Fuel systems also spiked in convincing fashion, a jump of just more than 100% between the period of November 23 to December 6.

Patti Freeman Evans, a senior analyst who monitors the retail industry for JupiterResearch, explains that the Internet is a key influencer in buying decisions.

"We see online retail plateauing at 10%–15% of total retail down the road," she says. "But that growth will really be organic, not dramatic. We look to the Internet to remain a highly influential channel for retailers to affect customer purchasing regardless of what channel the actual transaction occurs in."

Terapeak's Motors P&A Research provides sellers with access to comprehensive research on the past year of online auction data and allows users to get in-depth research reports on the competition and themselves. More at