Aluminum, tow boats lead moderate growth in May

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Ski and wake boats had 9.7 percent growth in May.

Ski and wake boats had 9.7 percent growth in May.

Boat registrations were up 2.1 percent in May in the main powerboat categories, and rose 3.2 percent in all categories, according to preliminary data from Statistical Surveys Inc., a Michigan company that tracks new boat registrations.

“Last May was a tough comparison because we were up 8.5 percent, so to still be up 2 or 3 percent overall is pretty good,” SSI sales director Ryan Kloppe told Trade Only Today.

Preliminary data from SSI, which measured boat registrations from 30 early-reporting states accounting for about 57.8 percent of the U.S. market, showed that ski and wake boats led growth with a 9.7 percent year-over-year increase in May.

Aluminum fishing boats were also up 5.8 percent, followed by pontoons, which saw 4.8 percent growth. Other than PWCs, pontoons had more unit registrations than any other category, with 6,917 sold.

Michigan led new boat registrations, edging out Florida as the No. 1 state in sales — consistent with the growth in the pontoon category. There were 3,586 boats registered in the state last month.

Florida followed with 3,563 boats registered — a dip from 3,344 last year — possibly attributable to the rainy weather in the state last month.

Texas ranked No. 3 with 3,025 boats registered, consistent with strong sales of aluminum fishing boats and tow boats.

There were 7,820 PWCs registered in May, a 6.5 percent increase that contributed to the stronger increase in overall boat sales.

Fiberglass outboard sales edged down 1.5 percent, with 5,446 units sold versus 5,528 last year.

Read more about May’s registrations in the August issue of Soundings Trade Only.

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