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inTech, Lucas Resurrecting Holiday House RV

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August 11, 2017 by   Leave a Comment

Looking to capitalize on the nostalgia for vintage RVs — in particular the iconic early 1960s travel trailer featuring the wrap-around curved front window — Nappanee, Ind.-based inTech RV is resurrecting the iconic Holiday House RV brand under the oversight of industry veteran Mark Lucas.

The first units, carrying an MSRP of about $30,000 for a single-axle, 3,000-pound (dry weight) 18-foot model, will be completed in time for the 2017 Elkhart RV Open House where Holiday House RV will seek to build sales and develop a dealer network. The inaugural models will be displayed at inTech’s Executive Parkway location where it will be showing the company’s Flyer line of all-aluminum microlight campers and toy haulers.

“What we want to do is find the right dealers who understand the value of the product, and how to sell the product. Then we’ll stand behind the product. So that’s going to be a selection process, not just signing up everybody who walks through the door,” said Lucas, adding that the goal is to build 100-150 units the rest of this year and 500-800 units next year.

Lucas was previously president of Shasta RV, a division of Forest River Inc., and oversaw the reissue of the Shasta Airflyte some three years ago. A self-described vintage car and RV aficionado, Lucas told RVBUSINESS.com that in line with the Shasta AirFlyte, Holiday House RV units are being developed with the “intent of not being an entry-level piece, but more mid- to high-end in terms of construction and components and that sort of thing.”

His stated goal is that Holiday House RV units will achieve “generational ownership” status.

“We’re not trying to simply replicate the original Holiday House trailers or to take away from their place in history, but rather honor the brand and continue in the founder’s footsteps and allow many more to experience the thrill of Holiday House ownership,” Lucas said, adding engineer Mark Dunithan is also a part owner of Holiday House RV.

Lucas pointed out that inTech RV, a division of all-aluminum motorsport and industrial trailer builder inTech Trailers, brings production expertise and capability to the startup. Holiday House RV units will be built on a separate line, but in the same 42,000-square-foot facility in Nappanee as the two-year-old Flyer line.

Lucas, who most recently had been vice president of North America for Furrion, said he’s known inTech owners Adam Maxwell, Tom Franko, Rich Schnippel and Dustin Lannon for quite some time and had always wanted to partner with them when the right opportunity came along.

“Having secured the name and pulled together all the info and designed the new coach, it’s been nice to put it together and not tell them to do something different than what they do,” he said. “It will be built just like one of the inTech trailers structurewise, which is made to last for years. Then, of course, we’ll put the more luxurious touches on it.”

According to Lucas, the original Holiday House began production in late 1959 and enjoyed a brief run before ceasing operations in early 1962. Since then, multiple companies have owned the Holiday House brand, including Holiday Rambler, until Lucas secured the name in 2014. The five-year business plan for Holiday House RV, Lucas explained, picks up where the original Holiday House RV left off. At the time, Holiday House was building 18-, 20- and 24-foot trailers.

“So we’re coming out with what I’m calling it a ‘continuation series’ of the 18, the 20, and the 24,” Lucas said. “The first one will be an 18-footer, and it’ll have a dinette in the front with a big ‘world view’ wrap-around window and log cabin aluminum cladding on the outside. It’ll be all hardwood cabinetry and paneling. The most notable difference is not only in terms of construction. The units will also feature a gas/electric water heater, 55-amp converter, Dometic Cool Cat air conditioner, stainless steel appliances, and stainless steel microwave.

“It’ll have all that, but tastefully done,” he continued. “It won’t be black and white checkerboard and those sorts of things, but you will feel that it’s 1960s inspired. There will still be vinyls and patterns and those sorts of things, but it will be more of ‘inspired by’ on the inside versus trying to look like a 1950s diner.”

Future generations of Holiday House RV units will continue to play in the higher end arena, Lucas said, but the design style will remain consistent. In fact, Lucas said he drew inspiration from Airstream in that regard and hopes Holiday House RV will achieve the same iconic status.

“I really admire the way Airstream did it. They stayed true to who they were, yet they continued to improve and advance and make their product more and more modern. But the soul of the product still exists,” Lucas said. “That’s really the plan with the Holiday House. When you walk up to it, you need to instantly look at it and say it’s a Holiday House. Regardless of what the future generations of this product hold, as far as changes in styling, you should still be able to say, ‘That’s a Holiday House.’”

 

 

 

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