Howe, Ind.-based Cruiser RV has received a $15,000 grant from the LaGrange County Economic Development Corporation (LCDCE) to aid in growth plans. The company announced a major expansion in September that is expected to create up to 200 jobs by 2014.
Cruiser RV, a lightweight towable builder, will invest more than $850,000 to lease a 140,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in LaGrange, Ind., adding machinery for a new production line and making infrastructure improvements. The new space is located near its existing manufacturing facility in Howe.
“We are thankful for the assistance from the LCEDC and the LaGrange County Investment Fund,” said Jeff Fought, vice president of Cruiser RV. “The building was in need of some clean-up and repairs, and the assistance from the LCIF helped us get those done and allow us to expand into the building.”
The LaGrange County Investment Fund was set up by the LCEDC with assistance from the LaGrange County Commissioner’s and LaGrange County Council in late 2009 as a fund to help give LaGrange County a competitive edge for projects that would create jobs, add to the tax base, and have a large positive economic impact on the community.
“Cruiser RV LLC has been a great partner in LaGrange County, and we’re excited that they have continued to grow in our community,” said Keith Gillenwater, LCEDC executive director. “Being able to retain and grow a local business like Cruiser RV in our community is a great win for all of us.”
Forest River Inc. has launched its new Vibe by V-Cross line of lightweight travel trailers. The V-nose trailer was displayed for the first time at the Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show in Hershey and is one of the front-line new 2012 models on display at the sprawling Forest River Inc. exhibit this week during Elkhart County’s 4th Annual RV Open House. The micro-light 6500 series is the smallest unit – able to be towed by smaller SUV’s and minivans – while still featuring up to 70-cubic-feet of exterior storage, queen pillow top mattresses, full bath, convection microwave, flat panel LCD TV, 81-inch interior height, independent torsion suspension and a high gloss gel coat exterior and front cap. Targeting the more traditional sector of the market, the Vibe 800 series offers lengths up to 30 feet with deeper slideouts. Features include walk-around queen beds, multiple entries, along with spacious bathrooms, bedrooms and kitchens. Standards include hide-a-bed sofas, cognac maple cabinetry, neo-angle showers with glass doors, enclosed tanks and exterior showers. Both series offer aluminum-framed, laminated construction for lighter weight.
After much anticipation, Forest River Inc.’s Surveyor 10th Anniversary Edition models will be showcased September 20–22 during this week’s Elkhart County 4th Annual RV Open House at the company’s expansive display at its Dynamax campus in East Elkhart.
According to a press release, Surveyor is a fully laminated lightweight product that offers 23 floorplans ranging in lengths from 20 to 35 feet and featuring non-slideout units, expandables, above-floor slideouts and flush-floor sliderooms. Dry weights for the 10th Anniversary Surveyor start at 3,100 lbs.
“Our 10th Anniversary Edition is the direct result of listening to our dealer network and travel trailer enthusiasts and meeting their needs,” said General Manager Kevin McArt. “We pride ourselves on developing cutting edge floor plans packed with features and benefits unsurpassed in the lite weight trailer market today. Our new Surveyor Select and Sport trailers are for anybody looking to optimize and enhance their RV experience.”
“Surveyor is known for its dependability in the market place as well as its superior construction,” said Sales Manager Mike Dolowy. “We provide our dealer network with a product they can feel comfortable in selling.
Upgrades include Lamilux 4000 “Cool Vanilla” gel-coat fiberglass, slam-latch baggage doors, crowned roof with aluminum truss rafters, Jensen LCD flat screen TV, hitch light, ball bearing drawer guides, black external trim, pass through storage compartment light, assist grab handles, tinted skylight/roof vents and the 10th Anniversary graphics package.
Other amenities include raised panel cabinet doors throughout with residential hidden hinges, outside shower, heated and enclosed underbelly, E-Z glide dinette table, detachable power cord, independent torsion axles, water filtration system, powered stabilizer jacks, Serta “Dreamscape” mattress and gas/electric DSI water heater.
“Innovation is the road to success in this industry and I feel that we have accomplished that,” said McArt. “We have received a lot of acclaim for our Vista Lounge concept as well as our rear drop-floor frame design in the SV305 model. Another notable feature is the Versa Track storage system that is utilized in our outside kitchen floor plans.
Surveyor towables are manufactured in Goshen, Ind., as well as Dallas, Ore. “Our West Coast operation has seen tremendous growth over this past year,” said McArt. “We are able to provide our West Coast dealer network with the same product that is manufactured here in Indiana without the added freight cost – and that is a huge advantage for those dealers.”
For more information on Surveyor’s 10th Anniversary Edition Select and Sport models, please visit Forest River’s website www.forestriverinc.com/Surveryor or Surveyor’s facebook page titled “Surveyor by Forest River.”
EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC will be holding a daily cash prize drawing Sept. 19-22 at the company’s manufacturing headquarters in Middlebury, Ind., during its Dealer Open House. The event is running in conjunction with next week’s Elkhart County 4th Annual RV Open House.
According to a press release, a name will be drawn at 3 p.m. from that day’s visitors to EverGreen’s display area. All attending dealers can register to win $1,000 in cash. The winner will be notified via cell phone and be required to return to EverGreen to claim the prize. The display will be open 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday.
During the Open House, EverGreen will be showing its lines of composite-built, eco-friendly trailers including:
• New EverGreen i-Go Lite: The new lightweight line of i-Go Lite travel trailers and fifth-wheels is lighter weight and easier to tow because of its narrower 7-foot, 6-inch width. The line is priced to sell while retaining EverGreen’s exclusive composite inner shell wrapped into a vacuum laminated camper.
• New Tandem Axel Element 26 Series: The line features a fully equipped bath, new convenience features and a larger 26-foot floorplan with heavier capacity tandem axles. The Element is gaining momentum with its fusion of styles between classic American automotive design and the latest in aerodynamic, European-inspired camping trailers.
EverGreen said there will also be a variety of new floorplans in the company’s Ever-Lite brand.
“You can’t stay static in our industry. If you’re not moving ahead, you are falling behind,” said Doug Lantz, president and COO for EverGreen RV. “Join us to walk through all these new Ever-Lite floorplans and new EverGreen Element and i-Go Lite products.”
Middlebury, Ind.-based EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC’s new line of i-Go Lite travel trailers and fifth-wheels offers families a lightweight, easy towing trailer that provides an affordable introduction into EverGreen’s eco-friendly towables.
“The concept of the i-Go Lite travel trailers and fifth-wheels is to provide economy-conscious camping families the opportunity to own a lightweight, quality-built EverGreen at a very affordable price,” said Doug Lantz, president and COO of EverGreen, in a press release. “The i-Go is still crafted with the same aluminum-framed, vacuum-laminated processes and 100-point quality control systems as all our EverGreen products.”
Lantz said that by limiting the amount of composite materials to a lightweight inner shell, EverGreen was able to reduce the price on the new i-Go Lite series of trailers.
“Now everyone can own a quality EverGreen product,” concludes Lantz.
Features of the innovative i-Go include:
• i-Go is lighter weight and easier to tow because of its narrower, 7-foot-6-inch width. With less wind resistance, the i-Go tracks smoothly behind smaller tow vehicles such as half-ton pickups or mid-sized SUVs. The entire i-Go Lite series trailers are less than 30 feet in length and weigh less than 5,000 pounds.
• Built better, yet more affordable with a fiberglass reinforced exterior skin, the i-Go still features EverGreen’s innovative, lightweight composite inner shell to reduce rot, mold and mildew. Composites also lower off-gassing of VOCs inside for a healthier camping experience.
• EverGreen’s vacuum laminated composite construction is bonded onto a fully welded and reinforced aluminum frame. The combination of composite materials and vacuum lamination result in added durability and higher R-values. The i-Go is a true EverGreen at a more affordable price.
• Deeper, 42-inch slideouts are above the wheel well to provide higher ground clearance. Six-inches deeper than the competition, i-Go Lite slides provide the living space of an eight-foot trailer yet retain the towability of a 7 1/2-foot wide trailer. Slides are driven in all four corners with EverGreen’s quality, four-point, gear-driven system to provide smoother operation and a tighter seal.
Four travel trailer floorplans are now available in the i-Go Lite series. All four are less than 27 feet and weigh less than 5,000 pounds.
The new i-Go Lite floorplans G220RB and G236RBK are both rear bath models with roadside, center, deep slides with mid-kitchens and front bedrooms. The over-sized dinette/sleeper in the slide out measures 84 inches by 42 inches to sleep two adults comfortably and has under-drawer storage. In addition, the slightly larger G236RBK features a kitchen table inside and EverGreen’s popular campfire kitchenette – a full service outside kitchen with cooktop, refrigerator and food storage curbside.
The G239BH sleeps six with a queen bed, large dinette that converts to a full sized bed and an additional “bunkhouse” in the rear of the camper.
The model G249RB features a more open floorplan designed for entertaining with a large sofa bed in the slideout facing a dinette and a galley L-shaped kitchen with expanded counter space and kitchen storage.
EverGreen eventually plans to offer five travel trailers and two fifth-wheel floor plans in the i-Go camper series.
Nappanee, Ind.-based Gulf Stream Coach Inc. recently introduced five new models in its Ameri Lite “Super-lite” line of trailers, offering “many deluxe features found on higher-end units.”
According to a press release, the new models range from 14- to 19-feet in length and offer an optional fiberglass “sidewall” upgrade package that “enhances the appearance of the trailer while also adding durability and protection from road hazards.”
“The dealer response was outstanding,” says Randy Baskerville, national sales manager. “Gulf Stream is focused on reducing weight and increasing value. These new products even compete strongly with the used trailer market.”
Gulf Stream Coach, established in 1983, produces a complete line of travel trailers and fifth-wheels that are sold throughout the United States and Canada under the brands Ameri Lite, Canyon Trail, Capri, Conquest, Endurance Max, Gulf Breeze, Innsbruck, Kingsport, Sky, Track & Trail, Trailmaster, Visa by Gulf Stream and Yellowstone.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.gulfstreamrvtrailers.com.