Jayco Showcases ’11 Pinnacles and Skylarks
When it comes to product, Jayco Inc. largely focused on two new 2011 lines during its Annual Dealer Homecoming last week (June 21-23) in the west Chicago suburbs: The Pinnacle luxury fifth-wheel and a smaller V-nose Skylark travel travel.
Both are directed at product categories with proven track records, according to Director of Product Development Paul Gardner, who adds that Jayco has finetuned its product development format this year with the appointment of brand managers.
“With the 2011 product enhancements for the Jay Feather, Jay Flight, Eagle and new Pinnacle series,” he said, “we believe we are heading in the right direction.”
The upscale Pinnacle, in the $52,850 to $62,500 MSRP range, comes in four 34-37-foot models with hardy “Polar Barrier” insulation packages and durable, high-gloss Gel-360 fiberglass exterior walls, including baggage and entrance doors. Elegant interiors, slam-latch baggage doors, electric rear jacks, large dinette windows, halogen ceiling lights and chic “Culinary Dream” kitchens featuring hardwood cabinetry and contemporary mullion cabinet doors are also part of the package.
“Our direction on this product is simple: attack the market with a new look, create our story, build momentum and stay humble,” noted Jeff Cripe, a regional sales and brand manager. “Many great names — Jay Flight, for instance — have been built using this same premise.”
Jayco debuted two of the five new Pinnacle models at the dealer meeting – both 36-footers – and plans to follow every month with another new model.
Reflecting a parallel shift to smaller, more economical towables, the “V-Bridge,” euro-styled Skylark is billed as being 30% lighter than conventionally built travel trailers — due to its Tuff-Shell laminated construction — and thus is towable at less than 3,000 pounds by 75% of today’s cars, SUV’s and light trucks.
Along with Euro-style kitchen cabinets and acrylic, tinted, dual-pane window systems, the 22-foot Skylark utilizes Azdell Superlite composites instead of wood throughout as well as energy-saving interior LED lighting and on-board heating and air conditioning that eliminates the need for roof top air conditioning and lowers the center of gravity. MSRP’s range from $22,715 to $25,175.
“There are no other products on the market right now that offer all the features, efficiencies, and conveniences that the Skylark currently offers,” says Ben Johnson, a regional sales and brand manager. “There are trailers out there that are as light as the Skylarks. There are trailers out there with V-Nose designs. There are even trailers out there using some of the Euro-styling and features that we use. But there are no competitors packaging all these things together into one product line.”
Otherwise, according to Gardner, Jayco is making two sweeping changes in its 2011 product lines, including the addition of Concord Cherry cabinetry and new adjustable pitch awnings.
“We took the industry by surprise when we made the power awning standard equipment a couple of years ago,” Garnder told the dealers. “However, we had not yet taken it to the next level. Our supplier, Carefree Awnings, has done an excellent job of making these changes and you will have this adjustable feature on all electronic awnings mounted on travel trailers and Eagle Super Lite fifth-wheels.
Also due out in Jayco’s 2011 lineup:
- Folding camping trailers with stronger one-piece structureboard bed platforms, permanently attached bed support poles, electric power roof lift options and permanently attached tents. Plus, in addition to new Baja 12E model with a dinette slideout and front deck, Jayco plans to introduce as many as four new models by the spring shows.
- The 2011 Jay Flight, a value-priced product that is still the nation’s No. 1 selling travel trailer, gets a new more rounded front profile and a “Water Works” system with 75-gallon minimum fresh water capacity and standard water heater bypass, winterization and PEX water lines – a “hot button” for today’s dry campers.
- The Jay Feather lineup for 2011 encompasses smaller, more inexpensive models towable by lighter SUV’s, crossovers, and minivans along with a series of enhancements – like front diamond plate, outside showers and wider entrance doors – to both the Jay Feather Select and Sport series.
- The Eagle SL fifth-wheel, a lighter series slotted between the entry level and the snowbird market, boasts new cabinetry colors, interior design components (valances, carpeting, bedding, etc.), larger fresh water tanks and hidden gooseneck storage in addition to the line’s first triple-slide model, a 31-footer.