Powerboat sales cooling in February


By Christopher Gerber
March 22, 2013
Filed under Features, Top Stories

Sales of powerboats 15-foot and larger continued on a second year of sales growth in February, though the pace of growth seems to be slowing slightly, according to the latest report from Info-Link Technologies.

Among the bellwether states, which represent roughly half of the U.S. boating marketing, geographically dispersed, sales were reported at roughly 10.3 percent greater than February 2012. This is an increase of 6 percent over the rate of powerboat sales in 2012.

The bellwether states, which provide a leading average compared with the rest of the boating market, ran a few percentage points higher than the rest of the boating population through the end of 2012.

Data for all states, which is available through the end of the year, showed sales among the entire boating population roughly 2 percentage points lower than the bellwether average at 10.3 percent sales growth in December 2012.

Boating segments

Sales of outboard boats, PWC, sportfishing boats and sterndrives all slid slightly in February compared to the previous year.

Outboard boat sales saw roughly 3.3 percent growth in February above the 10 percent year-over-year growth experience in February 2012. Outboard boat sales performed better in the bellwether states, as well, sitting 1 to 2 percentage points higher than the total of all boating states.

The segment continues to see growth, but seems to be reaching a leveling off point of year-over-year growth near the 12 to 15 percent mark in 2012.

PWC sales continue to build on a strong summer of sales for the segment in February as well, with bellwether states reporting growth in PWC sales of 7.5 percent higher than February 2012. Compared to the entire boating population, sales stayed roughly in line with the bellwether average.

Stern drive sales were roughly flat in February 2012, inching up 1 percent compared to the previous year among bellwether states. Among all states in December 2012, sales sat at around 2 percent greater than December of 2011.

Strength in ski boats

After an end of the year slide, sales of ski boats continued to increase year-over-year through February among bellwether states, and reaching the highest year-over-year increase for a month in more than five years.

During February, sales were up 10.2 percent year-over-year, making February also the ninth straight month of growth for the segment. Among all boating states, with data available through December, powerboat sales were up around 8 percent, year-over-year, slipping down from 9 percent growth in October.


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