ISMA says economic impact of sledding in the U.S. is $20 bilion

The International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA), based in Haslett, Michigan, is an organization representing the four snowmobile manufacturers.

ISMA, through strong partnerships with the Canadian Council of Snowmobile Organizations (CCSO/CCOM) and the American Council of Snowmobile Associations (ACSA), functions to provide and encourage policies, programs and activities to improve the sport of snowmobiling throughout the world, including promotion of the sport, coordinating committees within the industry, and keeping an accurate statistical database.

Below is a list of snowmobile-related facts assembled by ISMA in August.

1. The four major manufacturers that build snowmobiles are Arctic Cat, headquartered in Thief River Falls, Minn.; Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP), headquartered in Valcourt, Quebec Canada; Polaris Industries, headquartered in Medina, Minn.; and Yamaha Motor Corporation, headquartered in Cypress, Calif.

2. In 2004, there were 109,750 snowmobiles sold in the U.S., and 48,556 snowmobiles sold in Canada. The average suggested retail price of a new snowmobile sold in 2004 was $6,550.

3. The number of Licensed Snowmobile Dealers:

  • United States – 1960
  • Canada – 900
  • Scandinavia – 403

4. There are approximately 2.7 million registered snowmobiles in the world.

  • United States – 1.77 million
  • Canada – 557,000
  • Scandinavia – 370,000

5. Worldwide snowmobile sales:

  • 1993 – 158,000
  • 1994 – 181,000
  • 1995 – 227,400
  • 1996 – 252,324
  • 1997 – 260,735
  • 1998 – 257,936
  • 1999 – 230,887
  • 2000 – 208,297
  • 2001 – 208,592
  • 2002 – 203,153
  • 2003 – 186,627
  • 2004 – 181,336

6. The Economic Impact of Snowmobiling:

  • United States – $20 billion annually
  • Canada – $6 billion annually
  • Scandinavia – $1.4 billion Swedish Crowns annually

7. Over 85,000 fulltime jobs are generated by the snowmobile industry in North America. Those jobs are involved in manufacturing, dealerships and tourism related businesses.

8. The average age of a snowmobile owner is 41 years old.

9. The average annual household income for snowmobilers is $70,000.


10. The average snowmobiler rides their sled 990 miles per year.

11. The average snowmobiler spends $4,000 each year on snowmobile-related recreation, tourism and products.

12. 75% of snowmobile owners are married. The average snowmobile family has 0.8 children living in the home with them.

13. 65% of snowmobilers usually trailer their snowmobiles to go ride. 35% either snowmobile from their primary residence or have a vacation home where they keep and use their snowmobiles.

14. Approximately 80% of snowmobilers use their snowmobile for trail riding and touring in marked and groomed trails. 20% of snowmobilers use their snowmobile for work and ice fishing.

15. Snowmobilers spend on the average 7.2 nights per snowmobile season in a motel/resort room while snowmobiling.

16. Snowmobilers raised more than $3 million for charity during the 2003/2004 season.

17. Approximately 17% of all snowmobilers are 60 years or older, and 37% of all snowmobilers are 50 years or older.

18. There are over 225,000 miles of groomed and marked snowmobile trails in North America that have been developed by volunteer clubs working with local government and private land owners.

19. There are over 3,000 snowmobile clubs worldwide.

20. There are 40 registered non-profit associations representing snowmobilers in the U.S., Canada and Scandinavia.

21. The use of snowmobiles in National Parks is controlled, organized and regulated by Federal Law Enforcement. The snowmobiling occurs on roads groomed and marked for snowmobiling, the same roadways used by recreational vehicles, cars, trucks and busses. Snowmobiles are NOT used as off-road vehicles in National Parks such as Yellowstone, Rocky Mountain and Grand Teton.

22. On U.S. National Forest Land, most of the trails used by snowmobiles are on groomed roads used by summer recreationists. There are also secondary and seasonal roads within the forests used by snowmobilers. These roads are groomed and marked by volunteers who work closely with the local US Forest Service staff in maintaining and managing those areas.
For more information, contact ISMA at 1640 Haslett Road, Suite 170, Haslett, Mich. 48840; 517/339-7788; www.snowmobile.org. psb

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