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Torqata Trends + Treads: The Latest Metrics that Matter, July 2023

If you’re in the thick of the auto business, particularly tires, knowing the current trends is just smart business. The numbers from month-to-month and year-to-year aren’t just stats; they’re the scorecard for our industry. Gas prices, travel data, and store visits – they all affect our bottom line. Here’s a straight shot of the stats that matter year-over-year (YoY – July 2022 vs. July 2023) and month-over month (MoM – June 2023 vs. July 2023): 

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Quick Metrics:   

📉 Gas Prices: Down 20.6% YoY | Slight 0.8% MoM Increase to $3.71 

🚗 Miles Traveled: 1.8% YoY growth at 328M, but down 0.8% from last month 

🚪 Store Visits: Not seeing the expected recovery yet |6.6% YoY decline and a sharp 6.8% MoM drop 

Tire Pricing Snapshot: 

💲 Retail Price: Steady YoY growth at 2.2% | Minor dip this month by 0.5% 

💼 Cost: Up 2.6% YoY | Recent 0.5% MoM decrease 

📊 Margin: Maintained 0.9% YoY growth | 0.7% decline from last month 

As the automotive world shifts, it’s the numbers that help us keep pace and strategize. We’ve given you the metrics; now it’s up to you to use them to your advantage. Consider these stats as tools in your toolbelt, every bit as essential as a wrench or jack. Let these figures guide your next move, whether it’s adjusting inventory or revising marketing strategies.  

Got questions or looking for more insights? Don’t hesitate to reach out. Remember, success in this industry isn’t just about what you sell but how well you adapt. 

Ready to drive your business forward? Connect with Torqata for more tailored insights and strategies crafted just for your shop. 

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Tier 4’s Surge: Why They’re Dominating the Market

Published by Torqata Insights Team – reach out to

Tier 4 tires have made quite the splasIn the ever-evolving landscape of the automotive world, one tire tier stands out above the rest—Tier 4.

But what’s behind this notable rise? 

Tier 4’s Rise to Prominence

Looking at the tire business, it’s clear there’s a move toward Tier 4 tires.  Here’s what the numbers tell us: 

Pricing Dynamics: While other tire categories are seeing a price hike, Tier 4 prices bucked the trend, dropping by 4.9% year-over-year (YoY). Even with a monthly decrease across the board, this price shift is driving more interest in Tier 4 options 

Sales Volume: Despite a price drop, Tier 4 sales only decreased by 5.0% month-over-month (MoM) – but still performing notably better than its counterparts. 


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Why Are Tier 4 Tires Gaining Traction?  

There are a couple of important reasons: 

Price hikes in other tire tiers have accelerated consumers’ gravitation towards Tier 4 tires. As cited in Tire Business Review, Tim Eisenmann commented, “While Tiers 2 and 3 are feeling the most strain, Tier 1 remains stable. Interestingly, Tier 4 emerges as the top performer. For instance, if one prefers Michelin, they stick to it. But those open to alternatives are exploring Tier 4, occasionally opting for unfamiliar brands to save some cash.” 

The shift towards Tier 4 tires is more than just price increases in the other tiers. The aging car parc (vehicle population) plays a significant role too.  A recent highlight from the Jeffries Annual Review of Global Aftermarket in the Auto Care 2024 Factbook noted, “Vehicles between 4-11 years old, widely considered the aftermarket’s ‘sweet-spot’, surpassed a count of 117 million. Most notably, the average age of light vehicles in the US rose to 12.2 years, setting a new record.” This significant shift underscores the importance of understanding consumer behavior within this evolving market. 

As vehicles age, owners tend to be more cost-conscious regarding maintenance and replacements. Recent data has highlighted an increasingly older car parc, with more vehicles on the road past their prime years. When faced with necessary replacements or maintenance, owners of these older vehicles often prioritize affordability over brand loyalty, especially when the car’s perceived value has depreciated. 

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New Q2 Insights: Ride the Upward Trend With Price Adjustments Amid Falling Sales and Gas Prices

Torqata is proud to present Trends + Treads, a blog series that brings you actionable market insights in the automotive tire industry! We’re dedicated to equipping tire and service shops with actionable data and analytics tools that can help increase profits, identify blind spots in the business, and optimize the supply chain.  

For our next Trends + Treads post, our very own Franklyn Quiteh, Business Development Manager, previously from Tesla, takes our Q2 2023 wrap-up and breaks it down for you.

Franklyn Quiteh,
Business Development Managerfor Torqata Data and Analytics

Gas Prices and Store Visits Down 

Reviewing month over month (MoM) trends is huge in this industry. There are so many uncontrollable variables that can determine the success of a retailer or dealership. It appears we are slowly trending upwards, and tires will be a hot commodity come the fall and winter seasons.  

  • What is selling in your market?  
  • How much is it selling for?  
  • What are your competitors selling?  
  • How often is the market turning its products?  

These are all questions that should be answered in preparation for that upswing in sales. Better to be proactive than reactive! 

Retail Margins Stay Green 

The consistency in YoY pricing provides a great opportunity to stabilize pricing and gain solid insights. Data is KING and understanding your local and national trends can be the difference between a good year and a great one. Do not get left behind!  

Torqata has the insights and data to identify and provide profitable opportunities at your fingertips. Why pass this up?

Tire Sales Volume Take 

With tire sales volume decreasing, perhaps this would be a great opportunity to get more “bang” for your buck. Evaluating the profit margins on your top 10 or 20 bestsellers can very well determine how these economic rollercoastersimpact your bottom line.  

Consider this, with volumes decreasing due to a variety of different factors, including weather, perhaps using Torqata’s data to see if the cost of the tire is changing in your market, could help. Even with a decrease in volume, there could still be an opportunity to see an increase in average profit per unit!  

You never know; the top vehicle or tier-type of tire may surprise you! 

Tier 4 Remains Dominant! 

Even as overall sales decline, YoY we are seeing Tier 4 tires rise to the top of many retailers’ sales reports! This directly coincides with the conservative nature of the customer — in other words — the “that’ll do” mentality.  

Retailers! Adjust and capitalize! Review the top market movers in the tier 4 category in your area today and cash in on this opportunity. There is always a solution, allow Torqata to help you find it. 

Where our insights come from:

Our exclusive insights leverage data from over 15 thousand tire retailers and 50 million tires sold, which we combine with our comprehensive catalog of 221 thousand tires. For more information on our tools, contact or call 828-TORQATA.

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Torqata predicts uptick in retail tire sales

By Kathy McCarron


Economic factors likely are driving a decline in passenger tire replacements, as well as a decrease in tire shop traffic, according to Torqata Data & Analytics, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Tire Distributors Inc. (ATD).

Recreational vehicle tire sales (off-road and all-terrain) are sig- nificantly down compared with last year, and the trend is accelerating.

Retailer profitability is also declining despite tire price increases over the past year. Tires purchased at higher prices in 2022 and put into inventory are now having to be sold at a lower retail price point due to recent easing of wholesale costs, according to Torqata, so that retailers are seeing a squeeze on margins for passenger and light truck tires.

Torqata connects with multiple point-of-sale systems in the retail space and pulls data from retailers, such as inventory, sell-out and pricing.

The company then tracks national and regional trends and recommends to retail clients the types of tires they should stock for their market, the optimum pricing for various SKUs and what manufacturer buying programs would work best for their businesses.

Tim Eisenmann, Torqata CEO.

“We help tire and automotive retailers increase the profitability of their tire program,”

Torqata CEO Tim Eisenmann said, noting the company services about 15,000 tire shop locations, some of which are not ATD customers.

Mega trends

He said that it’s hard to compare historical data and trends given the recent years of disruption in the in- dustry and economy.

“I think the biggest megatrend is that we’re probably not going to go back to normal because normal doesn’t really exist anymore,” he told Tire Business.

Another trend is that tire store visits have been declining, down 5.5% as of the end of June, compared with a year ago.

“It’s intuitive when you think about the economy and disposable income and inflation.

“It’s counterintuitive when you look at things like gas prices, for example, that have decreased significantly,” he said.

He said it seems consumers are not only cutting back on visiting tire shops, but they also are defer- ring tire replacements, while re- placing other parts of their vehicles.

“We’ve seen an increase in con- sumers not purchasing a set of four tires. We’ve actually seen about a 20% increase in consumers purchasing one, two or three tires. So what that seems to indicate is if you’ve got a flat, while it would be better to replace all four tires, they’re actually only replacing one or replacing two in order to minimize the overall cash outlay.”

He said these trends are not a local phenomenon but common across the U.S. However, this year tire sales in the Midwest are down 8%, compared with the national decrease of 6%. The Northeast was nearly flat with last year.

While there are double-digit decreases in sales of passenger, off-road and UHP tires, compared with 2022, other categories are not hurting as much, such as commercial, light truck/SUV and specialty equipment tires, Eisenmann said.

“We continue to see Tier 2 and Tier 3 (tire brands) suffering the most, Tier 1 is relatively stable and Tier 4 is actually the best-performing tier as well.

“Consumers that do need to get the tires replaced, if you’re a Michelin fan, you stay a Michelin fan. But if you’re not, you go down to a Tier 4 product, maybe something you don’t know the brand of, to save a couple of bucks,” he said.

Tier 1 brand loyalty reigns among 10% to 20% of tire customers, who usually choose a Tier 1 tire for their second and third tire replacements on their vehicles.

“Where we’re seeing changes is the lower-end vehicles, the older vehicles, the ones on their third or fourth replacement. Brand loyalty isn’t as strong there anymore and definitely is strong for Tier 2 or Tier 3 products,” Eisenmann said.

Independent shops

“Independent shops are starting to future-proof their business,” Eisenmann said.

“They’re thinking about how to service electric vehicles, they think about advanced diagnostics more, so I think they’re starting to get to parity almost with some of the

larger chains that have been able to focus on these things for a little bit longer.”

According to Torqata, over the past 10 years, independent tire dealers gained 5% market share while car dealerships increased their market share by 2%.

But Eisenmann doesn’t view car dealerships as a threat to indepen- dents when it comes to replacement tire sales, as tires seem to be more of an afterthought for dealership service departments.

“I would also argue that the education of the staff isn’t geared at necessarily upselling tires,” he added.

Tire pricing

After a bout of manufacturer tire price increases last year, pricing is edging up at a lower rate this year, and not all those increases are passed on to the consumer, he said.

Some of that is due to the lag between price increases and inventory restocking.

“Now, in some cases, we’ve seen price reductions, and so the benefit that everyone had of being able to buy inventory low and then sell it relatively expensively is almost in reverse now. It hits the distributor a little more. They bought a lot of inventory at higher costs and now they’re notgetting that benefit of always increasing prices anymore.

“So while everyone was benefiting from this last year of buying low and selling high, now we’ve all bought relatively low, we’re not able to sell necessarily higher and so that first-in, first-out margin advantage isn’t there as much as it was last year. And we’re actually expecting that to continue,” Eisenmann said.

Some retailers don’t have an effective strategy for pricing their tires to retain or improve margins, he said.

“In general, retailers do leave some money on the table due to pricing decisions. It’s a variety of factors. … Most retailers sell hundreds if not thousands of different tires every month, and so knowing what the appropriate pricing is for each tire is really difficult and very hard to come by,” he said.

Manufacturers’ minimum advertised pricing helps, but some retailers have more random strategies, such as marking everything up a certain percentage or calling a few local competitors for their pricing.

Torqata generates a national and regional price index for every SKU, he said, providing a pricing range in various markets for its clients.

“On average, we see margin improvement opportunities somewhere between 5% to 10% and that means you don’t have to sell a single tire more, but you can make 5% to 10% more profit by pricing more appropriately.”


Tire manufacturers seem to be bullish for the rest of the year, based on the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association shipments forecast, Eisenmann said.

He said he is optimistic for the retail tire industry as well.

“I’d say we’ve reached probably the bottom of this year, and it’s probably going to go up. I think we will be able to beat 2022 comps across the board. …

“The outlook is relatively bull- ish for the majority of the players. So for the second half of the year, we’re going to see an upswing and I think across retailers, distributors and manufacturers, we’re probably going to end the year flat, year over year.”

Next year’s retailer profitability and sales hinge on several macroeconomic factors — the national economy, the war in Ukraine and gas prices, he said.

“I’d say I’m ‘cautiously optimistic’ and I think we’ve reached the bottom of this year and better times are ahead,” he said.

Advice to dealers

“Retailers know this. They’re leaving money on the table every day by not pricing well, by having too much of the wrong stuff and too little of right stuff and by not being on manufacturer programs they need to be on. They’re all aware of it,” Eisenmann said.

“The only reason for why that is still the case is because there is just not enough time in the day. So I would say for retailers: Go partner with your manufacturer, distributors and software vendors to take that burden off the floor. Have folks help you with pricing and inventory decisions and be open. …

“I’d tell retailers not to try to do it themselves but partner with the right folks in the industry that have done it before.

“There is money to be made. If you add inventory, pricing and a program, there’s probably 20% to 40% profit increases for most retailers out there without having to sell a single tire more. It’s doing what we’re doing in a smarter way.”

Torqata is a blend of unique talents and skills, pulling together a variety of the brightest data scientists, talented developers and automotive industry veterans’ laser-focused on providing tools and solutions that help advance the automotive industry.  

Advanced data analytics is just another way the automotive aftermarket is growing and providing insight to businesses and career opportunities for a new generation.  

View the original article by TIRE BUSINESS here.

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Torqata Data & Analytics Provides Market Intelligence on the Tire Industry for the 2024 Auto Care Association Factbook

Tire industry section is now expanded due to the partnership in the annually published book for the auto industry

Huntersville, N.C., June 19, 2023 – Torqata Data & Analytics, a software company in the tire industry offering market intelligence and real-time actionable data to the aftermarket auto industry, announced today that the company’s data was used in the newly released Auto Care Association’s 2024 Factbook to expand tire related data.

The award-winning Auto Care Factbook, available now, provides a comprehensive overview of the entire auto care industry. Torqata’s data and analytics used in the book expands the insights available to the industry. It provides the aftermarket auto care executives with insights that will help them make critical business decisions, including the tire industry. Additionally, tire operators will have a more comprehensive look into trends, industry-wide efficiencies, manufacturing updates, and other analytical information that will help customers save money, reduce waste, and lessen environmental impact by reducing the number of tires that remain on shelves indefinitely.

“We’re excited to publish the 2024 Factbook with expanded and new data, such as retail tire trends which will provide our members key insights into the retail tire market that were previously unavailable,”

“The Factbook is a compilation of everything you need to know, wherever you are in the supply chain and whatever your role is. We’ve partnered with the industry’s leading companies, like Torqata, to provide our members with the highest quality and most relevant data.”

Said Michael Chung, Director of Market Intelligence of the Auto Care Association.

Seen as the ultimate source for anyone associated with the auto industry, the Auto Care Association Factbook covers other items like ecommerce, rates of returns for parts compared to other industries, EV adoption, collision metrics, and more. It also includes interactive, up-to-date economic and industry indicator data via the Factbook TrendLensä platform.

“We are working with the Auto Care Association to identify ways to provide timely industry data,”

“We hope to continue and deepen our relationship with this important organization as we work to transform the industry by helping retailers make the right decisions based on customer data and purchasing trends.”

Said Tim Eisenmann, CEO of Torqata Data & Analytics.

Published annually, The Auto Care Factbook provides a baseline to the industry from the previous year. The report presents key data points for identified areas of the automotive aftermarket which are beneficial for executives to have insights and validated sets of data that can be used throughout the year to better serve clients and forecast profits.

About Torqata

Torqata Data & Analytics is a data analytics software company that helps tire manufacturers, distributors and retailers maximize profits and customer value by providing data visibility and connectivity across the supply chain. Torqata offers a full suite of data-driven software tools for pricing, inventory management, and sales insights designed to streamline operations and reduce or eliminate stale inventory. This allows manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to improve key areas of their business performance using patented technologies, and data-driven analytics and insights.

Torqata’s vision is to enable and inform manufacturers, distributors, service, and tire shop owners to source, price, and optimize their inventory; this reduces waste and drives profits through the entire distribution channel.

Interested individuals and organizations can visit to schedule a demonstration or to learn more.