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Automobile services: must-read reports and statistics

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Automotive Service Market Outlook

The automotive industry is characterized by intense competition, technological innovation, and is concentrated, with the 10 leading vehicle manufacturers representing close to 80% of global production. The automotive services industry is reliant on the automotive industry, following the same market pressures and showing the same sensitivity to general economic conditions. As the automotive industry begins to rebound following the global financial crisis, the supporting industries around it are also showing recovery. As government legislation to limit environmental harm from vehicle emissions sees specialized market segments take off, such as electric cars, the service industry will need to continue diversifying and working on technological innovation to keep up with new trends in vehicle production.

Global Automotive Service Industry

Auto service market research covers vehicle sales, leasing, and after sales services, including servicing and the sale of vehicle parts. The upkeep and repair of vehicles is becoming an increasingly complicated task for car owners as vehicles become more complex and use more advanced technology. Workers in the industry require training as the sector involves a high degree of specialization. Currently, there are more than 360,000 employees with certification across the US automotive service industry.

Safety plays a central role in the industry, which is regulated and controlled by legislation to protect workers and encourage effective risk management. There is a high degree of risk because of the amount of manual handling needed, for example welding and working with heavy loads.

Key Automotive Service Segments

Rental and Leasing: Profit from vehicle renting and leasing decreased during the financial crisis. The industry is beginning to rebound, and is expected to reach $53 billion by 2015, according to Global Industry Analysts. Growth in this market segment will come back on line as gross domestic product, employment, income and consumer confidence recover. In addition, as tourism begins to rebound along with people’s discretionary income, leisure car rental will see revenue rise, reaching almost $7 billion in 2013 in the EU market. Leisure car rentals had fallen throughout the financial crisis because of corporate travel cutbacks and a dip in tourism; this segment of the market is highly competitive and includes such leading companies as Hertz, Dollar Thrifty, Avis Budget and Enterprise. The US is the leading region in terms of market share in the global car rental industry, with Europe in second place followed by other developed countries.

Automotive dealers sell new and used cars at retail outlets and can also service cars. Dealerships provide emplyment in a different regions of the world, and are now important actors in the automotive financing sector. The global automotive retail industry is estimated to grow at an annual rate greater than 5.5%, hitting in excess of $5.13 trillion by 2015, according to MarketLine. Sales from automotive dealers accounted for more than $2.04 trillion, or more than half of the total worth of the automotive retail industry.

Drivers and mechanics source car parts in automotive part stores. Such parts include plugs, batteries, brakes and tires, and are necessary for the upkeep of a vehicle, playing an important role in road safety. The fast fit industry, concerned with servicing vehicles as customers wait, is expected to grow at a yearly rate of more than 3% for the five-year period ending 2015, to come to almost $7 billion.

The global automotive repair and maintenance services industry, which keeps vehicles functioning and prolongs the product lifespan, is expected to be worth almost $306 billion by 2015, according to Global Industry Analysts. The US is the world leader in this market segment, with an estimated market value of over $41 billion in 2012. Asia-Pacific is expected to show the strongest regional growth in the automotive repair and maintenance market. 

The global car washing services market is expected to reach almost $27.5 billion by 2017, according to Global Industry Analysts. As vehicle sales (and auto insurance) declined due to the financial crisis, the related global car washing services industry also declined. However, as the automotive industry recovers and sales increase, this market segment is beginning to rebound. The US and the EU lead in terms of market share, with Asia-Pacific expected to show 6% yearly growth through 2017, fuelled by developing markets such as India and China. Leading players on the market include Autobell Car Wash, Turtle Wax, IMO Car Wash, WashTec AG and Mister Car Wash.

  Evolution of the U.S. OE and Aftermarket Parts Market (2005 - 2010)

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