. The recession of 2009 hit the entire automotive industry hard. New car sales dropped by an average of 40%, resulting in huge lay-offs and the closing of dealerships all over the country. Huge job losses in the parts and tire manufacturing sector contributed to the economic meltdown.  One bright spot amidst all the doom and gloom has been the burgeoning used car market. Although the complete figures for 2010 are not available yet, it appears that used car sales have more than made up for the precipitous drop in new car sales. This boom in used car sales drove the replacement tire market to heights not seen since 2005. This trend is expected to continue through 2011.

In 2010, replacement tire sales topped out at $32.1 billion dollars. This reflects an average price increase of 11.3% over the two year period. Of the millions of tires sold, 76% were sold by independent tire dealers with only 8% sold by tire company stores. The other 16% were sold by big box stores, gas stations and auto parts stores.  (Source: Modern Tire Dealer)

Reasons why more than three quarters of all replacement tires are sold by independent dealers is largely due to price and established relationships with the consumer. Consumers shopping for replacement tires need to be aware of shady pricing methods practiced by some tire retailers. Many times the first price quote given is for the tire only. After the customer agrees to a price, which may be a 100% markup over cost, hidden fees are added. Suddenly, the consumer is presented with a bill that may be as much as 50% higher than originally quoted. Most consumers are unaware that state excise tax is levied on wholesale tires only and is simply passed on to the consumer by the retailer.

At Uptown Auto Service in Alliance OH, we are an independent dealer in every sense of the word. We are not tied to one manufacturer but retail all brands. We do not have gigantic warehouses or huge, unwieldy inventories. This allows us to pass the cost savings to our customers. We are connected to our suppliers via the internet and most orders are same day delivery. Our tire prices have a very modest markup. A fee is added for mounting the tire on the wheel, computerized balancing, a new valve stem and for disposal of the old tire. We add the sales tax, and provide the consumer with the exact price. There are no hidden fees and state excise tax is not charged to the consumer. We bring this same concept of honesty, integrity, and forthrightness to our automotive service and repairs. Our customers are our friends and neighbors.

Come, visit us at 2075 W. State St. or www.uptownautoservice.com and experience how it feels to be treated like family.