Hershey RV Show Sets Record as Gate Hits 57,692

September 19, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Crowds packed the Hershey Show throughout the five-day run (Photo by Kirk Zutell) Throughout last week’s five-day run crowds packed the turnstiles leading into the Giant Center’s expansive grounds as America’s Largest RV Show lived up to its billing with record attendance of 57,692 for the annual event in Hershey, Pa. Aided by picture perfect weather, the show’s Sept. 14-18 Public Days surpassed previous highs every day except for Sunday’s closing. “We couldn’t have asked for better... Read more

Open House ‘Menu’ is About More Than New RVs

September 15, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Forest River packed the house at last year’s Open House during its evening entertainment By now, the lobster tails served up under the Thor Industries Inc. tent and the fist-sized filet mignon usually on the dinner menu at least one night at Forest River Inc.’s Dynamax facility have become the stuff of Open House legend. Suffice to say that both companies will again be pulling out all the stops with food and drink at their respective venues. Increasingly, however, they are being joined... Read more

Forest River Open House Books Adkins, Daughtry

September 12, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Daughtry will perform at Forest River’s Open House display In celebration of its 20th anniversary, Forest River Inc. will be showcasing two Grammy-nominated performers as parts of its expansive product display at the Elkhart County RV Open House slated to run the week of Sept. 19. According to a press release, on Tuesday evening country artist Trace Adkins will be performing while the group Daughtry will take the stage Wednesday night. Both acts will be opening at 8 p.m. on their respective... Read more

SSI: Towable Sales Gain 1.8% in July, 11.4% YTD

September 10, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Year-over-year towable retail registrations edged up 1.8% in July while posting an 11.4% gain for the first seven months. Travel trailers were the only segment to post an increase in sales during the month. According to the latest report from Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI), results by category showed: Sales for the travel trailer segment increased 4.8% for the month and 14.5% year-to-date. Fifth-wheel registrations declined 4.9% in July, while seeing a 4.2% gain for the first seven months. Folding... Read more

SSI: Motorhome Sales Flat in July, Rise 8.5% YTD

September 9, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

July motorhome retail registrations showed no change from the same period a year ago while sales for the first six months grew 8.5%. According to the latest report by Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI), Thor Industries Inc. was the motorized sales leader through July with a 36.1% market share, ahead of Forest River Inc. (25.9%) and Winnebago Industries Inc. (17.8%). Motorhome sales by Jayco Inc. were included in totals for Thor Industries Inc., which acquired the company on July 1. Sales in the Class... Read more

Elkhart RV Open House is ‘Getting Bigger’ in 2016

September 8, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Thor’s expansive display at the Hall of Fame was filled last year The RV industry’s biggest “block party” — the Elkhart RV Open House — just got bigger. Not so much in size, mind you. While there have always been a few outlier displays in nearby cities like Middlebury and Bristol, the annual September trade show has, for the most part, traditionally taken over a large swath of Elkhart’s northeast side. And, true to form, the ninth annual affair will again occupy a lengthy stretch... Read more

2016 CARAVAN SALON Posts Record Attendance

September 6, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Display halls were packed at 2016 CARAVAN SALON This year’s CARAVAN SALON Düsseldorf posted all-time record attendance of 203,500 as the international trade fair marked its 55th year Aug. 26-Sept. 4 at Germany’s Düsseldorf Exhibition Centre. “CARAVAN SALON 2016 was an outstanding event with great business, very good sales figures and the best mood. Despite the summery temperatures on the first weekend, this year’s fair will be the best in the event’s history and has more than met our... Read more

Dexter Axle Acquires Supplier Rockwell American

September 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

DexKo Global Inc., global supplier of trailer running gear, chassis assemblies and related components, announced that Dexter Axle Co. has acquired Azle, Texas-based Rockwell American from American Industrial Partners. DexKo Global was formed through Elkhart, Ind.-based Dexter Axle’s acquisition of German manufacturer AL-KO Vehicle Technology (AL-KO VT). According to a press release, Rockwell has been a leading supplier of trailer axles, leaf springs, fenders and other trailer components serving... Read more

A Closer Look at Walorski’s Roundtable in Elkhart

August 29, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Indiana Rep. Jackie Walorski The economy, taxes, federal regulations and the area’s labor issues took center stage at a Roundtable discussion last week (Aug. 25) involving 2nd District Indiana Rep. Jackie Walorski and a room full of RV and marine executives at Lexington Corp. on the north side of Elkhart, Ind. The session was part of a swing through the area during which the Republican congresswoman, a former news reporter for South Bend’s WSBT-TV, also toured a number of area businesses in... Read more

RVIA: Shipments Gain 4.6% in July, Up 10.8% YTD

August 26, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

July RV shipments to retailers totaled 28,350 units, 4.6% ahead of the same month last year according to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) survey of manufacturers. The monthly total dropped from the previous month’s tally as all vehicle categories reported fewer shipments than in June. However, a slowing in July shipments is not historically unusual. Totals through the first seven months this year were 10.8% ahead of the 2015’s shipment pace of 254,636 units. Motorhomes... Read more

Winnebago Initiates Production at Oregon Facility

August 24, 2016 by · 1 Comment 

Line workers fine tune Winnebago Grand Tour diesel in Junction City Inheriting a veteran workforce and a 270,000-square-foot manufacturing and service facility, Winnebago Industries Inc. has begun rolling product down the line at the former Country Coach Inc. complex in Junction City, Ore. The Forest City, Iowa-based builder, which acquired the property and equipment on Dec. 2, 2015, is still in the process of modifying the plant situated on about 41 acres, 27 of which are currently developed.... Read more

Road to Recovery: Rain-Ravaged Dixie RV Digs Out

August 22, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Dixie RV’s store in Hammond, La., shown two weeks ago, sustained around $30 million in flood damage Regrouping and rebuilding in the face of overwhelming devastation, Dixie RV Superstores in Hammond, La., steadfastly put the pieces back together last week as the waters began to recede from the historic rains and resulting floods that inundated the area the week of Aug. 8. For the record, the RV dealership officially opened its doors last Wednesday. But, according to Dixie RV CEO Greg Lala,... Read more

Forest River FROG Rally Fills Indiana Fairgrounds

August 17, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

The Forest River Owners Group (FROG) Rally, running Aug. 14-20 at the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds in Goshen, Ind., has taken on a life of its own. In just four years, the rally – which offers attendees a host of activities including several trips, 75 educational seminars, 65 vendors and no-cost factory service – has quadrupled from just 208 units the first year to a record turnout this year of 800 RVs and 1,630 members coming from 42 states, two Canadian provinces and New Zealand. In fact,... Read more

Epic Rains Flood Louisiana’s Dixie RV Superstore

August 15, 2016 by · 3 Comments 

Flood waters swamp Dixie RV’s store in Hammond, La. Dixie RV Superstores CEO Greg Lala estimates that his company’s main store in Hammond, La., sustained as much as $30 million in damage to its physical plant and RV inventory as a result of a historic 50-year rainfall that fell last week, off and on, over a five-day period in southern Louisiana. And while the storm totaling more than two feet in some locales left at least five dead and led to the rescues of some 20,000 people, Lala was well... Read more

SSI: June Towable Sales Up 7% on Trailer Strength

August 11, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Year-over-year towable retail registrations grew 7% in June – boosted by continued growth in the high volume travel trailer sector – while posting a 12% gain for the first six months, According to the latest report from Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI), results by category showed: Sales for the travel trailer segment increased 10.7% for the month and 15.2% year-to-date. Fifth-wheel registrations were flat, down 1.1% in June, while seeing a 4.5% gain for the first six months. Folding... Read more

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