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Frost & Sullivan Forecast Predicts Youthful Surge in End Users to Revitalize Automotive Gauge Aftermarket.

Business Editors and Automotive Writers

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 28, 2000

The customizing, restoring and upgrading of cars and trucks continues to drive the automotive gauge aftermarket.

Automotive gauge manufacturers have always relied on aging baby boomers to support this market, but now, with a new, younger generation emerging, the market is poised to experience healthy future growth.

New, exclusive strategic market research from Frost & Sullivan (www.frost.com), "U.S. Automotive Gauge Aftermarket," reveals that the industry's revenues may top the $99-million mark by 2006. That's nearly $20 million more than revenues generated in 1999.

An older, more affluent customer base is currently driving the market. This older segment consists primarily of automotive enthusiasts who use gauges to modify older vehicles into street rods or increase vehicle performance.

"Baby boomers have substantial discretionary income because they are in their peak earning years," says Frost & Sullivan analyst Joerg Dittmer. "They have more leisure time because many are now 'empty nesters.' Predictably, though, their numbers will decline in coming years."

Frost & Sullivan projects a younger generation of end users will pick up the slack. A rise in younger drivers that are modifying their Japanese-made vehicles, opening the add-on gauge market to unfamiliar growth. The replacement market is not a viable channel yet, since the standard gauges in new-model cars are virtually upgrade-free.

"Japanese-nameplate vehicles have increased their share of the vehicle population," says Dittmer. "Since these vehicles are popular with younger drivers, interest in modifying them can be expected to increase in proportion to their discretionary income growth."

This new group of end users is often seen as an extension of the domestic performance vehicle segment, but Dittmer warns that this may not be the case.

"Market participants perceive this new segment as being separate from the domestic performance market, with a very different customer base," says Dittmer.

Frost & Sullivan presents the 2000 Marketing Engineering Awards to companies that have worked hard to make a positive contribution to the U.S. automotive gauge aftermarkets industry. The Market Engineering Leadership Award goes to Auto Meter Products. The Business Development Strategy Award is presented to Dolphin Instruments and Gauges Inc. Actron Manufacturing Co. receives the Internet Marketing Strategy Leadership Award. Dakota Digital Inc. is awarded the Product Differentiation Innovation Award.

Companies that participated within this industry include: Actron Manufacturing Co.; A'PEX Integration Inc. (A'PEXi); Auto Meter Products Inc.; Beede Electrical Instrument Co. Inc.; Blitz Performance Products; Clark Brothers Instrument Company; Classic Instruments Inc.; Cyberdyne Gauges; Dakota Digital Inc.; Dolphin Instruments and Gauges Inc.; Electrodyne Inc.; GReddy Performance Products; HKS USA Inc.; Stewart Warner Instrument Corporation/Maxima Technologies; Teletronics; and VDO North America LLC.

Frost & Sullivan, which is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., is a global leader in international strategic market consulting and training. Frost & Sullivan's industry experts monitor the automotive industry for market trends, market measurements and strategies. This ongoing research is used to complement the Automotive Aftermarket Custom Subscription, which includes studies on the U.S. Automotive Fuel Injector Aftermarket and the North American Shock Absorber and Strut Aftermarket. Executive summaries and interviews are available to the press.

Along with publishing in-depth strategic market consulting research, Frost & Sullivan also provides custom consulting needs to variety of national and international companies.

U.S. Automotive Gauge Aftermarkets

Report: 5394-18 Date: September 2000
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