CHICAGO Ill. – Wholesale dollar sales of all boats in 2003 were up 7.0 percent compared to 2002, while unit boat shipments were down 4.8 percent, based on the December Monthly Shipment Report (MSR) just released by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA).
“Non-traditional boating segments had a negative impact on overall unit sales, specifically paddlesports,” said NMMA director of Market Statistics Jim Petru. “Remove them from the equation and unit sales for the traditional boating segments (outboard, inboard and sterndrive boats) were up 1.5 percent for the year, while wholesale dollar sales were up 9.3 percent.”
NMMA said inboard cruisers showed strong gains in unit sales jumping 4 percent compared to 2002, while fiberglass sterndrive boats experienced an 8 percent increase in unit sales compared to the previous year.
“We have received a lot of positive feedback on the economy from exhibitors and attendees at our consumer boat shows, and response to our Marine Business Leaders Outlook survey indicates increasing optimism among the leaders in the industry,” Petru said. “With that in mind, we expect 2004 to be a good year for recreational boating,”
NMMA’s MSR tracks manufacturers’ shipments to dealers for both boats and outboard engines using a control group of boat and engine manufacturers. The 2003 boat control group represents about 85 percent of the overall boat marketplace while the 2003 outboard engine control group represents about 95 percent of the market.