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Ontario, October  2016 – Business conditions for the automotive aftermarket have never been better, according to the 2016 Outlook Report released by AIA Canada. A surge in light vehicle sales in the last two years has had a knock-on effect throughout the entire ecosystem, with the Canadian automotive aftermarket industry hit an all-time record of $21 billion in 2015.

This record high is reflected in increased employment in the automotive aftermarket. In total, staffing increased by 2.2 percent compared to 2014.

The overall outlook is positive for the automotive aftermarket, but the study also notes that there are disruptive influences at play that may have a substantial impact. This includes relatively recent phenomena such as ride sharing, which may change the market landscape of the future in unpredictable ways.

There were 25.6 million light vehicles registered in Canada in 2015, according to the report. This is an increase of 4.4 percent increase from the 24.5 million operating vehicles recorded in 2014. The average vehicle in the fleet is 9.6 years old.

This figure has increased steadily in recent  years, with the trend often attributed to increased reliability. In some ways, this is good news for mechanical service providers, as older vehicles typically require more maintenance. However, it may not be as welcomed by collision repair professionals, as the diminished value inherent in older vehicles may mean insurers are more willing to write them off.

The total distance driven by Canadians showed a decrease for the second year in a row in 2015, according to data gathered by Transport Canada. According to the report, the stats also show decreases in total travel time and overall fuel consumption.

The Outlook Study provides an overview of the current aftermarket industry, as well as forecasts and trends that will impact the aftermarket in the future.  The study is compiled using a variety of secondary and primary research, including personal interviews and input from AIA members. The report forecasts growth for the aftermarket, and identifies a number of opportunities as well as industry threats.  As with any industry, the aftermarket is undergoing some market shifts and changes.

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