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Upbeat KZ Dealers Gather in Shipshewana, Ind.

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June 19, 2009 by   Leave a Comment

The nearly 100 dealers who attended KZRV LPkz‘s dealer open house June 17 and 18 were “honestly upbeat” about their prospects for the coming year, said Andy Baer, vice president of sales and marketing.

“I think the general consensus is we’ve hit bottom,” he said.

Having said that Baer believes the economy will remain rocky until the financial community gets its business in order. But there are indications that some of the financial issues are easing, he said, and dealers are very excited about the floorplan financing program recently announced by the Small Business Administration.

The main draw of this open house – KZ’s 23rd annual dealer gathering – was to show off the towable manufacturer’s 2010 offerings. Baer said KZ has streamlined its operations and its products to target key market segments.

Baer singled out two towables — the Durango 1500 fifth-wheel and Coyote Lite travel trailer – above the rest of the 2010’s.

The Durango 1500, a half-ton towable with two slideouts, is a higher end fifth-wheel that is mid-profile and more aerodynamic. The more diminutive and minivan-towable Coyote Lite has a dinette slide, a full bath and a GVWR of 3,500 lbs.

This year the interior colors of KZ’s trailers are very light and most units feature natural maple woodwork.

KZ, in Baer’s view, should be well positioned to take advantage of the uptick he expects to occur next spring. He said people have flocked to the RV shows this year and are very interested in the prospect of camping. “People like the idea of getting out and taking their own belongings with them,” he said.

Over the past couple of months, Baer says he has seen business pick up somewhat.

“We’re optimistic,” he said, “tempered by realism.”

“Financing on both sides of the equation – retail and wholesale – is still a problem,” he added. “But, this process, when we’re done with it, we all should be the better for it.”

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