SEMA eNews Vol. 11, No. 17, April 24, 2008

A DRIVER'S NEED TO STAND OUT—WHY THE RESTYLING MARKET HAS NEARLY DOUBLED IN A DECADE

With retail sales for the restyling market nearly doubling over the past decade, auto consumers have shown that vehicle customization is one way they like to separate themselves from the rest of the pack.

Retail sales for restyling products have shown a steady increase from 1996, when sales were $2.287 billion, to 2006, when sales were $4.076 billion.

BJ Leanse, North America Sales Manager of Big Country Truck Accessories and Chairman Emeritus/Advisor of SEMA’s Professional Restylers Organization (PRO) Select Committee, agreed that sales of his restyling products have experienced consistent growth over the past decade, and believes that this market trend is in response to the almost uniform appearances of many vehicles.

“So many vehicles look the same when they come out of the factories,” Leanse said. “Consumers don’t want what they are driving to look like their next door neighbors’, and both jobbers and dealers have been there to provide consumers with the products they want. When we add style, function and quality, we give people what they are looking for and that's how our business keeps growing.”

The restyling market includes all products used to modify the exterior and/or interior of vehicles. This includes a wide array of products ranging from sunroofs to ground effects and grille guards to drop-center bumpers.

Accessories represented 66.4% of the products sold in the restyling market for 2006, while performance products accounted for 15.6% of restyling market sales, and wheels, tires and suspension composed the remaining 18.0%.

Restyling product sales currently represent a little more than 11% of the total automotive specialty-equipment market.

To read the full report on the restyling market niche, click here.

For more original SEMA market research, visit www.sema.org/research.

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