Northwood Mfg. Hosts New-Product Preview
Arctic Fox’s Northwood Mfg. brought dealers from throughout the western United States and western Canada to the company’s manufacturing complex in La Grande, Ore., Oct. 3-7 for its 2012 product preview — and to let those retailers know that in spite of all the changes the products have undergone, Northwood as a company and the way it conducts business has not changed.
“Northwood’s objective is to provide both dealers and the end user with the best-built towable products in the market,” said Ward King, Northwood COO, in a release. “Northwood has built its reputation by providing dependable, high-value recreation vehicles by insisting upon quality components and demanding quality craftsmanship from our dedicated production line associates. Ron Nash’s stamp is on everything that we do — it is our company culture. We could not abandon that influence; it is the solid foundation on which we build. That commitment will never change.”
Donald Cochran, national director of sales, led the dealers through all the exciting changes the company has been working on over the last year.
“Using input from owners and our dealers, we have spent the last year fine-tuning our brands to provide product solutions that will satisfy today’s consumer and lead to improved sales and profitability for our dealer partners,” Cochran said. “Our products have been revitalized and energized. They are positioned for a major resurgence when the winter show season gets under way.”
All Arctic Fox models now feature laminated construction complete with welded aluminum frames. Additionally, Arctic Fox is now sporting a bold new look thanks to an aerodynamic front fiberglass cap with integrated LPG tank cover as well as an updated logo and graphics package. All exterior compartments have been equipped with “slam latch” catches.
The Silver Fox Edition, in particular, was on the receiving end of a host of new features, including a new stylish aerodynamic grey fiberglass cap with integrated LPG tank cover. Interior enhancements include solid-surface galley countertops, antique-glazed deep maple cabinet doors and, in the bedroom, a large skylight with blackout shade and Northwood’s Tru-Rest memory foam mattress.
Like all Arctic Fox models, it also enjoys the convenience of an Interior Command Center — a centralized location for switches and the monitoring station.
“This is a new Arctic Fox that looks dramatically different than previous versions. We have increased the value of our products. We want to give our current customers a reason to buy a new Arctic Fox and we want to attract new buyers. All these improvements were incorporated without a price increase,” stated Cochran.
Other major changes to the Northwood lineup included:
•Silver Fox Edition fifth wheels. Redesigned from the ground up with a wide-body design, they feature a grey aerodynamic cap complete with docking lights and “Tight Turn” radius design. The stack-rail chassis design allows for cavernous below deck storage; other exterior enhancements include keyless entry and an exterior convenience center complete with 12V disconnect.
Interior upgrades include solid-surface counter tops and antiqued-glazed, deep maple cabinets throughout, new furniture styling, new window-treatment applications and designer Iron décor items. Livability was greatly enhanced as a result of the 6-foot, 6-inch tall main floor slideouts in conjunction with the wide body design.
•Returning to its original position in the market, Nash has been repositioned and rebranded as Nash LT and Nash DLX, both featuring the certified Northwood off-road chassis with 15” radial tires, an enclosed, insulated and heated fresh water tank and a durable, easy to clean fiberglass exterior siding. The Nash DLX also includes a 10-gallon water heater, a generator-ready compartment and a 2000-pound receiver.
•A new look to the Desert Fox. Sporting bold body-wrap Desert Fox icon graphics, this toy hauler also features 16-inch aluminum wheels, solar reflective windows, motion detector patio lighting, and electric awning. Interior highlights include a stainless-steel appliance group, Kicker Premium Sound System w/Amp, CD/DVD player, designer interior with logo accents.
•Two new Snow River fifth-wheel models — Northwood’s “step-up” product — were showcased. The 2665RKSS features a rear u-shaped kitchen as well as a super slide; the 2765RLSS features a center galley and super slide with a pair of recliners in the rear. Both of these models are less than 30 feet, and are mid-profile, half-ton-towable units that provide full stand-up head room on the upper deck.
•Fox Mountain, Northwood’s aluminum-framed, laminated mid-profile fifth-wheel brand, was displaying two new models as well. The new 245RKS is a rear kitchen model and the 265RLSS is a rear-lounge model with a center galley and super-slide that features a pair of recliners in the rear. Both models have a GVWR of 9,500 pounds, making them towable by new half-ton trucks.
In addition to the company’s new-product preview, Lance Rinker, Northwood’s director of materials and marketing was on hand to report on the launch of Northwood’s new user-friendly website and provide some insight into the planned marketing efforts currently under development. According to Rinker, one major focus will be on developing materials that help communicate some of the unique processes/features that distinguish Northwood products — including the launch of the “Absolute Northwood” campaign. He also reported that all Northwood towable brands will now feature a decal at the entry door that boasts the certification of Northwood’s chassis by a third-party engineering firm that conducted aerospace Interference Grid Technology Design Analysis for optimum performance and safety.
“This certification proves that Northwood is committed to building better products and further distinguishes Northwood products from others in the market,” said Rinker.