Cologne, Germany – Market trends in the European tire trade sector along with the impact of digitalisation, recycling and skills issues will be key themes of The Tire Cologne 2020 trade fair, according to Stephan Helm, chairman of the German Tire Retailers and Vulcanization Trade Association eV (BRV).
Around 207.5 million passenger car, four-wheel drive and light trucks tires were sold in the European replacement market in 2018, Helm reported at a 10 Oct European press conference for The Tire Cologne 2020, 9-12 June 2020.
Of these, some 50.5 million units were sold in Germany, which overall took an approximate 25% share of the main consumer and commercial vehicle tire markets – making the country by far the largest replacement tire market in Europe.
“Market growth has for the most part proven to be stable in the past business year both in Europe and in Germany,” Helm reported at the press conference for the expo, organised by Koelnmesse GmbH with BRV as industry sponsor.
This stability “was despite the structural upheaval in the automotive sector, due to the ongoing shift to new drive types and increasing digitalisation across the industry,” he also pointed out.
Such trends, insisted Helm, “have not changed anything about the fact of a continuing high demand for products and services revolving around tires and chassis technology.
“Wheels and tires are still what brings motor power onto the streets – regardless of how this power is generated.”
On the other hand, he noted that new developments in automotive technology are changing the requirements for wheels/tires, and in turn the type and level of skills now needed in the tire/wheel/workshop segments.
The European tire trade sector, said Helm, will have to develop new investment and skills strategies and identify: the “best-seller” products/services of tomorrow; which new market players to cooperate with; and effective digitalised/optimised processes.
The Tire Cologne, concluded Helm, will offer industry a “broad basis” for addressing the needs of ‘future mobility’ in the high-tech exhibition halls as well as with a series of international events including the Global Retreading Conference and the Future Tire Conference.