You may not like stop and go traffic on your commute, but the aftermarket sure does.
While miles driven increased only slightly in 2010, product volume in the aftermarket rose 3.2 percent, according to a recent study by Lang Marketing. How can product volume rise significantly while the miles driven increase was a paltry 0.8 percent? These days, it’s about not only how many miles motorists drive but the kind of miles they drive. (A side note: Miles driven for this April fell 2.4 percent from April 2010, but no product volume numbers are available for the same time period. So, let’s not talk about that right now.)
For each mile driven these days, Americans are piling on more wear per mile. The fact that we’re driving older vehicles also contributes to the additional wear and tear. Today, the average vehicle is 12.6 years old. Back in 2001, it was 10.5. Urban driving now accounts for two-thirds of commuting in the U.S. Everyone knows urban driving is tougher on vehicles. There’s lot of sitting and idling and although a vehicle may not be moving forward, it’s still experiencing wear.
According to Lang, the average light vehicle in the U.S. had an odometer reading topping 105,000 miles. For many car companies, that means a vehicle that’s clearly been out of warranty for quite for a while.
GO BACK TO SCHOOL!
It’s always a good idea to get more education and Alfred State College, which has an excellent automotive parts technology program, is offering courses online. The courses have been developed to help managers and/or counter professionals gain knowledge in store operations, according to the college. The courses offered include studies in many areas, including: inventory control, store layout and design, basic understanding of financials, understanding cataloging and pricing concepts.
You can take the courses individually for college credit through ASC’s Center for Community Education and Training. Students can view actual lectures when it’s convenient for their schedule. Courses are available during the fall and spring semesters through ASC’s Center for Community Education and Training.
CPOTY DEADLINE IS AUG. 1
And lastly, don’t forget Aug. 1 is the deadline for nominating yourself and/or someone else as the 2011 Counter Professional of the Year, sponsored by Affinia, WIX and Raybestos. Every year, we get hundreds of nominations for the honor. Counterman magazine has recognized counter professionals with this program since 1985. The recipient not only receives industry recognition but also an all-expense-paid trip for two to Las Vegas for the aftermarket’s largest trade show, AAIW, including three nights
at a top Las Vegas hotel. To nominate yourself or someone else, go to www.counterman.com/CPOTY.aspx.