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Automakers Dealing with Stricter CAFE Standard

March 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Since last December, when President Bush signed an energy bill that requires auto companies to achieve a 35-mpg fuel economy standard by 2020, with substantial improvements by 2015, auto executives have been gnashing their teeth while environmentalists have been flashing the V sign for victory. BusinessWeek magazine reported that three months later, it has become evident the road to greater fuel efficiency is full of potholes. For one thing, the new legislation adds a new level of complexity to the... Read more

Japanese RV Sales Up, Boomers Drive Increase

March 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Japanese Baby Boomers seeking post-retirement adventure have lifted annual year-over-year sales of camping vehicles for the third consecutive year, according to the Asashi Shimbun. “A growing number of seniors want to go on free-wheeling trips in Japan after retirement,” said Tatsuya Yakubo of the Japan Recreational Vehicle Association. “The cars offer an added advantage of enabling people to take their pets with them.” Sales of campers, including imports, rose from 3,099... Read more

Tight Economy Sinks Boating Industry’s Sales

March 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Since 1973, Hunter Scott had made sailboats, powerboats and custom-made lobster boats. But, according to an Associated Press report, he decided to close his Pocasset, Mass., shop in December, lay off half his staff and switch to cabinetry work as orders for the $300,000 vessels all but dried up. “I had a lot of fun in the marine industry,” he said. “But the economy has taken its toll.” Across the country, the $40 billion boating industry is struggling to weather a season... Read more

TL Books Publishes ‘Pet E.R. Guide’ for RVers

March 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Trailer Life Books, a leading publisher of books, magazines and guides that serve North America’s recreation vehicle enthusiasts, has introduced the “Pet E.R. Guide” designed to provide contact information for 24-hour and after-hour veterinary facilities throughout the U.S. The 200-page guide provides information to help travelers plan ahead and locate care for their pets in the event of an injury, illness or emergency. It also includes a “pet travel checklist” to identify the necessities... Read more

FEMA Assures Pa. Town Donated Trailers OK

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) assured officials in a Pennsylvania town that two travel trailers donated to a local technical school did not pose a health risk due to formaldehyde fumes. The Towanda Daily Review reported that FEMA responded after the paper wrote an article about the possible presence of formaldehyde in the trailers. “The primary health concern about elevated formaldehyde levels is for those living in the trailers long-term,” said Simon Chabel, a public relations... Read more

Affinity’s Daquino to Oversee Clubs Division

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Affinity Group Inc. announced that Joe Daquino will be taking on an expanded role as president of Affinity Clubs, replacing Grant Miller who resigned for a position with Chicago Title. Daquino will continue in his role as senior vice president, multi-media division. His new responsibilities will involve oversight of all Affinity Clubs, including the Good Sam Club, Coast to Coast, Camp Club USA, Golf Card International and the newly formed RV Handyman Club. Daquino started with Affinity in 1984 as... Read more

Equine Motorcoach Slated to Hit Show Circuit

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

An extensive tour of horse shows and competitions is planned throughout the summer for the Equine Motorcoach, an imported motorized “horse box” that combines the features of a luxury RV and a horse carrier. “We’ve got a pretty aggressive horse show schedule between now and the end of the summer,” said Tom Stinnett, owner of Tom Stinnett Freedom RV Center, Clarksville, Ind. Stinnett is managing partner of Equine Motorcoach LLC with his wife, Carolyn, and Julie Calzone, a Louisiana public... Read more

Millis to Direct Alfa Leisure Product Design

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Ontario, Calif.-based motorhome and luxury fifth-wheel manufacturer Alfa Leisure Inc. has signed on industry veteran John Millis to serve as director of product development. “John brings with him 25 years of RV experience working with diverse product lines from Class C through luxury diesel pushers and his fresh new attitude towards design will help expand the Alfa lineup with new features, decor and floorplans,” said Alfa President Scott Degnan, who joined the company in late January. In his... Read more

Damon Designs Shorter, Fuel-Efficient Class A

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Damon Motor Coach in late spring will introduce a relatively short 31 1/2-foot, European-inspired front-engine Avanti Class A diesel motorhome built on a 16,000-GVWR Workhorse W-42 commercial truck chassis that emphasizes fuel economy. “Our goal is to get 15 miles per gallon,” said Bill Fenech, president of the Elkhart, Ind., subsidiary of Thor Industries Inc. “That’s a huge difference from what Class A motorhomes are getting now.” The planned Avanti and Del-Ray – Damon’s first... Read more

HGTV Feature Shines Spotlight on RV Industry

March 28, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The popular HGTV cable channel will begin airing this weekend an hour-long special showcasing current trends and features in recreational vehicles. Filmed during last September’s 39th Annual Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show in Hershey, Pa., the feature offers a walking tour of the latest in product innovations. The “RV 2008 ” show premieres at 9 p.m. Eastern on March 30, and will be rebroadcast at 1 a.m. on March 31. The special will be shown repeatedly during the coming weeks. According... Read more

LSI Kicks Off 2008 Season With CARE Confab

March 27, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

More than 75 recreation directors, campground owners and managers from 43 Jellystone Parks gathered in Cincinnati March 13-14 to get tips on improving camping experience for families. The annual Campground Association for Recreation Education (CARE) conference is Yogi Bear Leisure System Inc.’s (LSI) signature event in the days leading up to the start of camping season, according to a news release. “Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Parks take pride in catering to families and truly being vacation destinations... Read more

GMC Unveils Denali XT Hybrid Concept SUT

March 27, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

How much the hybrid vehicle trend ultimately affects the U.S. tow vehicle market remains to be seen, but there are signs that changes are afoot. One example now in the works is the Denali XT concept hybrid sport-utility truck (SUT), which serves as a test bed for GMC’s future design direction and offers a 50% increase in combined fuel economy over comparable, small, gas-fueled pickup trucks. The truck’s unibody architecture and rear-wheel-drive layout, according to its designers, lend to a muscular,... Read more

Country Coach Names Haack Salesman of Year

March 27, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Highline motorhome manufacturer Country Coach Inc., Junction City, Ore., recently announced that Jerry Haack of Buddy Gregg Motorhomes was named Country Coach Salesperson of the Year. In June 2006, Haack joined Buddy Gregg Motorhomes, which operates dealerships in Knoxville, Tenn., and Lewisville, Texas. He has been affiliated with other dealers and working in the RV sales industry since 1994. “I was very excited when I found out about the award,” Haack said. “I’ve been aspiring to be... Read more

Gallon of Gas Hits New National Average High

March 27, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The average price of a gallon of gas in the United States has risen to a record $3.26, and the cost of diesel fuel has soared to a record $4.06 a gallon, adding to pressure on consumers and the companies that deliver their goods. The Associated Press reported that the national average price for self-serve regular unleaded gas rose 6.9 cents to $3.2645 a gallon from $3.1955 two weeks earlier, according to the nationwide Lundberg Survey of about 7,000 gas stations. The price surpassed the previous... Read more

Winnebago Board Accepts Hertzke’s Resignation

March 27, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Winnebago Industries Inc.’s board accepted Bruce Hertzke’s resignation Wednesday (March 26) from his position as chairman and CEO, effective May 5. Winnebago said that Bob Olson will take over as chairman and CEO upon Hertzke’s retirement while also retaining his position as president. Hertzke, 56, is a 36-year veteran of the company and has held the position of chairman and CEO since April 1998. He was elected to the additional position of president in May 1998 and relinquished that position... Read more

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