High Gas Prices Influence Auto Buyers

May 24, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

While gas prices continue to flirt with $3-a-gallon, consumers are looking more closely at the size and fuel efficiency of their vehicles. According to an Associated Press report, the latest Consumer Reports Auto Pulse Survey finds 37% of consumers saying gasoline prices are so high they are looking at replacing their current vehicles with more fuel-efficient vehicles – mainly hybrid models. Of those who may replace their vehicles, 50% are considering gasoline-electric hybrids. Another 38%... Read more

KOA Free Camping Program a Success

May 24, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Company-owned and franchised KOA campgrounds gave away 13,676 free campnights May 12 during its annual “Come Camp With Us” promotion, while also raising more than $75,000 for KOA Care Camp over that weekend to send kids with cancer to summer camp. “One of our properties in Monroe County, Mich., raised $8,200,” said Mike Gast, director of communications for KOA Inc., Billings, Mont. “They go whole hog with all sorts of fund-raising things going on all weekend.” This is the third year that... Read more

FreedomRoads, CWI Host Indy 500 Expo

May 24, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Chicago-based national dealer network FreedomRoads LLC, in partnership with RV accessories retailer Camping World Inc. (CWI), will be hosting the first-ever Expo May 25-28 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The event coincides with the running of the Indy 500 scheduled for Memorial Day weekend. According to FreedomRoads, the expo will cover three city blocks outside the Brickyard and offer a full array of accessories and RVs for sale, including Fleetwood motorhomes, Keystone fifth-wheels... Read more

Pump Prices May Hold at $2.60 a Gallon

May 24, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

While U.S. retail gasoline prices fell sharply in the last week, the national pump price should stay above $2.60 a gallon for the summer, the government’s top energy forecasting agency said Wednesday (May 24). Reuters reported that the national price for regular unleaded gasoline dropped 6.4 cents over the last week to $2.88 a gallon, as crude oil costs declined. Consumers are still paying 76 cents a gallon more at the pump than they were a year ago heading into the Memorial Day holiday weekend,... Read more

Monaco to Produce Dodge Brand RVs

May 23, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Monaco Coach Corp., Coburg, Ore., announced today (May 23) an agreement with the Dodge brand for exclusive use of the Dodge logo and designs on travel trailers, fifth-wheels and sport utility recreational vehicles (SURVs) in the U.S. and Canada. Under the agreement, Monaco Coach will manufacture Dodge-themed trailers over the next three years. Marketing activities are scheduled to begin on June 30 with products available on Sept. 30. “We’re pleased to team up with the Dodge brand, which... Read more

Wisconsin Parks Bolster State Economy

May 23, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Wisconsin’s 95 state parks, representing the nation’s oldest state park system, attract 14 million visitors annually and generate an estimated $650 million in tourism dollars, according to a report in the Green Bay Press Gazette. “We’re a big part of the tourism economy in the state,” said Peter Biermeier, section chief for external relations for Wisconsin state parks, citing information gleaned in a 2002 study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “We’re an important... Read more

Stat Surveys: March Towables Fall 10%

May 23, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Towable sales dipped 10.1% in March from 2005, including a 12% drop in fifth-wheel retail registrations, according Statistical Surveys Inc. The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based independent marketing firm noted that the monthly totals were gauged against last year’s 25-year benchmark for March towable sales. In addition, information was incomplete for the states of Washington, Mississippi and Montana. Overall towable retail registrations fell to 24,089 units compared with 26,782 a year ago while first-quarter... Read more

Spader: Dealer 1Q Costs Creep Higher

May 23, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

The effects of rising interest rates crept into the bottom lines of recreational vehicle dealerships during the first quarter of 2006, according to Spader Business Management. All dealer categories showed higher spending during the three-month period, although costs for smaller dealers were essentially flat. Larger dealerships, defined as those with annual income over $10 million, were the only group to show an average net profit at $82,042 for the quarter, but it was 17% lower than the previous... Read more

Thor Reports Record 3Q Earnings, Sales

May 23, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Thor Industries Inc. eclipsed $2 billion in sales for its first nine months, ended April 30, as the Jackson Center, Ohio-based company reported record third quarter revenue and earnings. Investors responded to the healthy report, which exceeded analysts’ expectations, as Thor shares rose sharply in afternoon trading and ended the day up $2.11 at $48.01 per share. “We continue to outperform the RV industry in both segments, motorhomes and towables,” said Thor Chairman Wade F. B. Thompson. “Our... Read more

Boomers Power Spike in RV Ownership

May 22, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Russ and Jean Glines have picked the theme music to herald their transition from living in a 3,000-square foot country club home to full-time roadies in a 400-square-foot recreational vehicle, according to an Associated Press report. The Glines, 43-year-old mortgage brokers, are among a growing number of Baby Boomers who have pushed the number of RV owners to record levels, including some who hit the road full time while continuing to pursue their careers. “There’s two CDs by the Allman... Read more

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