Dutchmen Debuts Fiberglass Sidewall Package

July 27, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Dutchmen Manufacturing Inc. has introduced an optional new fiberglass sidewall package that, according to a release, enhances the appearance of the trailer while also protecting it from road hazards. Available on Dutchmen Lite and Four Winds Express Lite travel trailers, the new sidewall option replaces the standard corrugated aluminum exterior siding. “The new package creates a durable fiberglass sidewall option on entry-level price point units,” reported Steve Paul, vice president and... Read more

Availability Hampers Redesigned Sprinter Sales

July 26, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Sales of the newly redesigned Dodge Sprinter van, popular in the RV industry as a platform for Class B and C motorhomes, have fallen substantially from 2006, primarily because parent company DaimlerChrysler AG isn’t exporting enough of them to the states, according to USA Today. “If we get could more over here, we could sell them,” said Chrysler Group spokesman Bryan Zvibleman. Dodge sold 6,438 of the Mercedes-Benz-built vans during the first six months of the year, down 38% from the... Read more

Baird Poll: Half Report Sales Below Expectations

July 26, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

In its recently released “Q2 RV Dealer Survey,” investment firm Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc. found that demand remains soft and lot inventory is falling as RV dealers reduce orders. Retailers remain reluctant to order as higher interest rates have discouraged trade-ins. Milwaukee-based Baird polled 86 dealers to gauge retail trends, inventories, promotional activity and 2007 expectations heading into the third quarter. Results included: • Retail: Demand remained weak in Q2 as... Read more

R-Vision Outfitting PODS for Emergency Housing

July 26, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

RV manufacturer R-Vision Inc., Warsaw, Ind., is outfitting specially equipped Portable On Demand Storage (PODS) units — typically used to store household goods — to be used for emergency housing, according to the Associated Press. Pete Warhurst, founder of PODS Enterprises Inc., Clearwater, Fla., is in discussions with the state of Florida and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) about ordering PODS units to have on hand. Monster storms in 2004 and 2005 planted the seed in Warhurst’s... Read more

Spartan Reports Record Quarter Sales, Earnings

July 26, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Despite continued softening in its RV chassis segment, Spartan Motors Inc. today (July 26) reported its best-ever second quarter results — marked by a 39.7% increase in net sales and a 30.5% increase in net earnings for the quarter ended June 30. The Charlotte, Mich.-based manufacturer of custom vehicle chassis and emergency- rescue vehicles reported net earnings of $6.5 million on net sales of $152.6 million in the second quarter, compared with net earnings of $5 million on net sales of $109.2... Read more

Monaco Posts Higher 2Q Earnings, Revenues

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Improved Class A sales and reductions in overall costs helped Monaco Coach Corp. post higher second quarter earnings in the face of “challenging” market conditions. The Coburg, Ore.-based company said its Class A business was up over 6% year-to-date through the quarter, ended June 30, outperforming the market which showed a 6.6% decline in sales through May. “Our Class A retail results remained positive, despite continuing challenges in the domestic motorhome market,” said Kay Toolson,... Read more

FEMA Reconsiders Sale of Emergency Trailers

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Days after the Federal Emergency Management Agency‘s (FEMA) chief spokesman said concerns about formaldehyde would not stop it from selling or donating surplus disaster trailers, the agency said Tuesday (July 24) that it is reviewing the policy. The Associated Press reported that FEMA provided about 120,000 travel trailers to victims of the 2005 hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Some occupants last year began reporting illnesses, including nosebleeds and headaches. FEMA‘s chief spokesman, Aaron Walker,... Read more

Go RVing Dealer Tie-In Program Sets Record

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

The Go RVing dealer tie-in program has passed the 800-participant mark for the first time in the 12-year history of the initiative. The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) reported that through early July, the total number of U.S. and Canadian participants is 859. Through the end of June, dealers had built over 230 ads in the industry-only ad builder, downloaded over 1500 images from the image library and downloaded 1.1 million leads. In addition, RVIA said state associations... Read more

Report: RV Industry to Pick Up Speed by 2008

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

The recreational vehicle market is expected to pick up speed over the next five years, growing 5% percent and reaching $15.9 billion, according to a new report from market research publisher SBI. The report said that higher interest rates, higher gas prices and a slower housing market are expected to continue restricting consumers’ RV purchases through 2007, dropping the market nearly 4% to under $12 billion. Barring any major hiccups in the economy or any other unforeseen events, however,... Read more

Fed Report: Economy Shows Moderate Growth

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

The economy registered modest growth in the early summer, considering how consumers and some businesses were buffeted by both high gasoline prices and the sour housing market. That’s the gist of a Federal Reserve region-by-region survey, released Wednesday (July 25), which also showed the economy clearly has emerged from a rut at the beginning of the year and is now growing, albeit slowly. The Associated Press reported that on the inflation front, consumer prices continued to increase “at... Read more

Banks Postpone Chrysler Group Funding Plan

July 25, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

The group of Wall Street banks raising funds for the sale of Chrysler Group postponed a $12 billion debt offer after investors balked at its terms, leaving them on the hook for most of the financing and raising fresh questions about the strength of the credit market. Bankers will have to front about $10 billion as a loan in order to keep Chrysler’s sale to Cerberus Capital Management on track, according to people familiar with the deal who spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday because they... Read more

For Airstreamers, It’s One Big ‘Silver Family’

July 24, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

J. Rick Cipot remembers the first time he saw an Airstream. He was just a boy. “I didn’t know what it was at the time,” he says of the shiny silver trailer that resembles a giant toaster on wheels. “But I knew I wanted one.” According to a report in USA Today, Cipot now owns a 2005 Airstream Safari, and he attended a ceremony this year when a 1963 Airstream Bambi was installed in the lobby of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Cipot took his obsession with the American... Read more

Go RVing Ad Campaign to Run Through 2009

July 24, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

The award-winning “What Will You Discover? Go RVing” ads will be held over and continue running for an extra year in 2009, by recommendation of the Go RVing Coalition at its June 11 meeting in Washington, D.C. According to RVIA, the eight current print ads and five TV spots have yet to show signs of fatigue as ad respondents continue to visit at a record pace and order the free DVD. RVIA said Go RVing’s staff and ad agency will consider supplementing the existing ads with smaller-space... Read more

GM Cuts Back on Full-Size Pickup Production

July 24, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

General Motors Corp. will cut the number of pickup trucks it produces at its Pontiac, Mich., assembly plant and lay off an unspecified number of workers because of a slowing pickup truck market. The Associated Press reported that the move will take place starting in early September at the plant, which employs about 2,800 hourly workers, including 300 temporary employees hired to replace those who accepted buyout and early retirement offers, company spokesman Tom Wickham said Tuesday (July 24). The... Read more

El Monte Selling Used Units on

July 24, 2007 by · Leave a Comment 

Rental firm El Monte RV has partnered with, adding another platform for selling its used motorhomes online. “We were looking to increase the distribution of the sales inventory that we put online,” said Ken Schork, El Monte president and CEO, noting the firm turns over its inventory once every 18 to 24 months. “It will expose our inventory to new customers who weren’t familiar with our product. Perhaps they knew they could rent, but had no idea they could buy a used... Read more

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