May 23, 2011 – Majority of snowmobile dealers expect growth in 2011

More than 50 percent of powersports dealers who carry snowmobiles expect sales growth in the segment in 2011, according to a Powersports Business online survey conducted from April 7-15. Similarly, about 40 percent expected flat growth in the snowmobile line in 2011.
For the first quarter of 2011 compared to a year ago, 76 percent of respondents who sell snowmobiles also reported that their sales growth in the snowmobile segment was flat or higher. Twenty-four percent of the respondents showed a decline in year-over-year sales from the first quarter of 2010 to the first quarter of 2011.
More than 40 percent of the snowmobile dealers who responded to the survey reported inventory as “too heavy.” More than 50 percent of the respondents answered that their inventory was “about right.”
Questions regarding the current level of discounting in the marketplace in the snowmobile segment also received strong feedback from the dealers who responded to the survey. Nearly half of the respondents qualified the discounting as “normal,” with 49 percent characterizing the discounting level as “somewhat higher than normal” or “much higher than normal.”
Overall, nearly 80 percent of dealers responding to the survey characterized their dealership’s profit margins as “about the same,” somewhat better” or “significantly better” in the first quarter of 2011 versus a year ago.
Also, in responding to a question about being concerned about the potential for supply disruptions as a result of the March earthquake in Japan, 73 percent answered either “somewhat concerned” or “very concerned.” PSB

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