Publisher's Statement - December 2018

Automotive aftermarket industry analysis — by the numbers

It was another successful and busy Industry Week for everyone who attended the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX) and Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show.

The vendors I spoke with said booth traffic was up and new business was humming along. Both events were full of new products, technology, training, and opportunities to connect with old friends on the show floor and elsewhere.

They are also indicative of the immense size of our industry and how important it is to the economy and keeping everyone rolling down the road. The 500,000 businesses in the U.S. automotive aftermarket industry form a coast-to-coast network of independent manufacturers, distributors, repair shops, marketers and retailers, small and large.

The folks at the Auto Care Association, AASA, and MEMA have generated data on just how big — and important — the aftermarket is with a few of the statistics below.



•    $740 billion global automotive aftermarket industry

•    Approximately 1.2 billion vehicles on the road



•    $381 billion U.S. automotive aftermarket industry (includes heavy duty)

•    The aftermarket industry grows at an average of 3.6 percent annually

•    2.4 percent of the U.S. GDP generated by motor vehicle parts manufacturers

•    Vehicle parts suppliers manufacture 77 percent of the value in today’s cars.

•   By 2020, experts predict there will be more than 250 million connected vehicles that will generate $14.5 billion in revenue in automotive data assets

•   Employs 4.6 million professionals in a variety of careers

•   Represents 3.2 percent of total U.S. non-farm employment

•   Motor vehicle parts suppliers are the largest sector of manufacturing jobs in the U.S

•   300,000 are jobs available at any time

•   Average wages and benefits = $60,000

•   Average age of vehicles = 11.7 years

•   ehicles 16 years or older will increase 30 percent by 2021

•   218 million licensed drivers

•   70 percent DIFM; 30 percent DIY

•   Of the 70 percent DIFM, 70 percent of consumers prefer independent shops for repair and service as compared to new car dealers.

•   25,550 parts classifications represent more than 13,733 brands in the industry

•   264,981 retail parts outlets

•   e-Tailing, or parts sold over the internet, is experiencing an annual growth of 7-10 percent in the DIY and 5-7 percent in the DIFM markets

•   879,000 technicians


Parts & People

Parts & People is published monthly by Automotive Counseling and Publishing Company, Inc., a Colorado corporation, P.O. Box 18731 Denver, CO 80203, 303-765-4664. President-Lance Buchner. Founded by Lance Buchner and Dave Lucia.