Karl Blade, president of Newell Coach Corp., took a wait-and-see attitude in late August to an uptick in sales of the $1 million-plus motorcoaches his Miami, Okla., company builds.
”We hope it continues,” Blade said. ”But we are not going to increase production until we see some solid evidence that the market is improving. We endured a market that plateaued on us after we got out of the depths of the Great Recession and we are now back on a regular production schedule.”
That means that Newell is on schedule to build 24 luxury motorcoaches this year, six to eight of which will be customized ”production” models for buyers who don’t want to wait the six months it takes to design and build a personally customized Newell motorhome.
”We’ve done a lot of product upgrades, the most recent was new styling front and back,” Blade said. ”There’s a lot more chrome trim.”
Additionally, Newell recently began installing electronic steering and an active suspension system in its coaches, and earlier this year designed a new centralized control system that can be operated with an iPad.
Newell, a legendary brand in the luxury motorcoach segment, was founded in 1967 by L.K. Newell, who purchased California-based Streamline Trailer Co. and moved it to Oklahoma.
Blade, who bought the company in 1979, said Newell has adapted as the luxury coach market changed over the last decade. ”The use pattern has gravitated toward destination luxury resorts and less toward clubs and rallies that are sponsored by the manufacturers,” Blade said.
Newell has sales locations at the Motorcoach Country Club and Desert Shores Motorcoach Resort, both in Indio, Calif., where Blade spends the winter promoting Newell products.
Newell also has a sales representative in Florida who travels the state displaying Newell Coaches at high-end resorts. ”Florida has a greater geographic dispersion of high-end resorts, while California resorts are centered in Indio,” Newell said.
Newell earlier this year signed an agreement with Tom Johnson Camping Center, Marion, N.C., to act as a Newell agent and provide service for Newell motorcoaches. ”They work with the prospect, but it is a Newell Coach sale directly from the factory,” Blade said.
Responsive customer service and a fast-moving field service team are important for any business. But, as reported by TheSmartVan.com, not all products are created equal: When a microwave shorts out, most people don’t really expect the manufacturer to move mountains in an effort to get their machine back up and running ASAP.
But what about a multi-million dollar private jet, or a luxury motorhome? It’s safe to say expectations are a little higher there.
“At $1.5 million a coach, our buyers rightfully expect us to do whatever it takes to keep them on the road and happy,” says John Clark, vice president of customer service for Newell Coach Corp., which makes luxury motorhomes.
For businesses that trade in super-expensive, luxury items, having personalized customer service and a field operations staff ready to cross the country at the drop of a hat is practically a must. A repairman at the ready is part of what customers expect when they drop that kind of cash.
Clark says his company has flown techs out for some pretty out of the ordinary service requests — it once sent techs to Saudi Arabia to work on a high-end RV for a Saudi prince’s wives. Recently, it sent techs to Italy last-minute to help a racing crew traveling from one event to the next when their RV had trouble. Hard to imagine that level of support from your dishwasher manufacturer.
To read the entire article on TheSmartVan.com click here.
Miami, Okla.-based Newell Coach Corp., a manufacturer of custom luxury motorhomes, announced it has just completed production of its first coach featuring an updated and innovative redesign by legendary Porsche Design GmbH, a subsidiary of Porsche AG. According to a news release, the new coach is now available.
The model features high-intensity-discharge (HID) xenon projector headlights that are supplemented by “string-of-pearl” LED daytime running lights. It also includes a handsome rear-taillight redesign inspired by the “cathedral” taillights of the 1955 and 1956 Packard. Genuine hard-chrome finishes add a jewel-like quality to the new design elements.
This is Newell’s second successful collaboration with Porsche Design. The first resulted in Newell’s “ground-breaking” 2006 model, according to the company.
“The new design is very impressive,” said Newell Coach President and CEO Karl Blade. “Customers are giving us excellent feedback on its sleek, original styling. We’re also very pleased with how the project was handled. Even though it included cutting-edge innovations in materials and other design elements, Porsche completed the entire project without a hitch. We’re very glad to work with Porsche Design and to again see their stunning design contributions added to our coaches.”
Newell has been manufacturing custom coaches since 1967. For more information, visit http://www.NewellCoach.com, e-mail sales at newellcoach.com, or call 1-888-363-9355.
Miami, Oklahoma-based Newell Coach Corp., a manufacturer of custom luxury motor coaches, has once again called on Roland Heiler and Zell am See-based Porsche Design GmbH (a subsidiary of Porsche AG) to provide an inspirational new front and rear aspect for Newell’s 2013 model year coach.
The RVing Examiner reported that the tailor-made “refresh” features a dramatic front headlight bucket design and cathedral-style rear tail lights reminiscent of those found on a 1955 Packard. According to Karl Blade, Newell president and CEO, the first motorhome using this newly minted design has just rolled off the company’s production line. Blade – who described Porsche’s latest contribution as “very impressive” – is clearly a fan of the Austrian-based design house.
Newell Coach first incorporated Porsche design elements – including a molded-chrome trim – back in 2005 for their 2006 model year coach. The design work – Newell’s first major revamp in over 15 years – was undertaken at Porsche’s former Huntington Beach, Calif.-based design studio.
To read the entire article on RVing Examiner click here.
Miami, Okla.-based Newell Coach Corp. and Tom Johnson Camping Center have joined forces to provide expanded motorcoach sales and service to their respective customers.
According to a press release, the partnership allows Tom Johnson Camping Center, based in North Carolina, to assist their customers in the purchase of new and used Newell motorcoaches, and to also provide warranty and other services to Newell motorhome owners. In addition, the partnership will benefit both companies’ customers, including a significant number who are members of the region’s motorsports racing community.
“A number of our customers are interested in the type of large, ultra-luxury, innovative motorhome Newell manufactures,” said Tom Johnson, president of Tom Johnson Camping Center. “After carefully evaluating Newell’s product and their history of integrity in their relationships with customers and business partners, we concluded that our two organizations were especially well suited to working together.”
“The Tom Johnson organization’s commitment to customer satisfaction will be a valuable asset to existing and prospective Newell coach owners, especially those in the Eastern U.S, and those near Marion and Charlotte, North Carolina, where the two Tom Johnson Camping Centers are located,” said Newell Coach President Karl Blade. “The partnership will also offer Newell’s autoracing customers expanded levels of service.”
Two iconic RV brands, Newell Coach and Airstream, have joined forces. According to a press release, the two companies jointly announced that Miami, Okla.-based Newell is now an authorized dealer of the Airstream Interstate 3500 Class B touring motorcoach for customers in the South-Central U.S.
Newell is also offering the coach to Newell customers who want to use the Airstream as an adjunct to their existing Newell or to downsize to a smaller motorcoach.
“Airstream is excited to join forces with Newell,” said Larry Huttle, chairman of Jackson Center, Ohio-based Airstream. “The two brands both represent unique and successful chapters in the rich history of American recreational vehicles.”
“For some time, our customers have been asking for advice and help buying a Class B RV that they could use as a tow vehicle or as an alternative to their larger Newell motorcoach,” added Newell Coach President, Karl Blade. “There are many brands to choose from, but our customers repeatedly mention Airstream as their preference. Thanks to our new association with Airstream, we can respond directly to those customers’ requests.”
The Airstream Interstate 3500 provides the quality, comfort and performance of a Mercedes-Benz platform in a Class B touring vehicle. It is powered by a 3.0-liter Mercedes-Benz V6 diesel engine and produces 188 hp and 325 pound-foot of torque. Even though it gets 30% better fuel economy than other comparable gasoline engines, it is able to tow 6,900 pounds.
“The Interstate gives Newell owners more flexibility,” said Blade. “For example, a Newell with an Interstate in tow can be driven to a convenient location outside a national or state park. The Interstate can then be driven into the park, providing convenient overnight facilities for a day-or-two stay within the park. In addition, some long-time Newell owners would like to downsize to a coach that is compact but still offers some of the comfort and convenience they’re used to,” Blade continued. “The Airstream is a great choice for our customers. It reflects the luxury, quality and innovation they’ve come to expect in a motorcoach.”
Newell Coach Corp., a luxury motorhome builder based in Miami, Okla., recently announced that its new StabilRide active-suspension system is available on Newell motorcoaches to be delivered beginning Jan. 1, 2012.
According to a press release, StabilRide dramatically improves coach handling, stability, and ride quality to levels previously unattainable in a vehicle the size and weight of a Newell.
“StabilRide is a key reason ‘Car and Driver’ magazine (July 2012) recently said the ride in a Newell ‘approaches Lexus-like perfection,’” said Newell President Karl Blade.
Newell said that StabilRide is a state-of-the-art, computer-controlled active-suspension system that automatically adjusts the suspension firmness or softness at each of the six wheel positions every ten milliseconds.
When a soft suspension setting is required to absorb a road irregularity, the selected suspension damper or dampers adjust accordingly. When a firm setting is needed to control excessive vehicle movement, such as immediately following a bump or to keep the coach level when entering a turn or executing a quick lane change, the suspension adjusts to optimal firm settings.
The adjustments all happen automatically and almost instantaneously. The company said that they are also unnoticeable, except that the coach rides more comfortably, has much less “lean” in corners, and “porposing” action following dips in the road is eliminated. Excessive body movements are also eliminated.
Newell developed StabilRide in partnership with ZF, a world-leading motor vehicle component engineering and manufacturing company. Active suspension has been introduced on selected premium and high-performance passenger cars over the last two decades and has become increasingly popular on these vehicles. However, Newell is the only motorcoach manufactured in North American to feature an active- suspension system.
After months of development and preliminary testing by ZF engineers and professional test drivers, Newell and ZF conducted final testing of the Newell StabilRide system at ZF’s facility in Northville, Michigan, in late April.
Much of the testing was conducted on challenging, two-lane rural highways that have significant dips and side-to-side unevenness. With the conventional passive suspension installed on the test coach, maintaining a speed of 40 m.p.h. was uncomfortable, requiring two hands on the steering wheel and constant driver corrections.
After StabilRide was installed on the vehicle, the same roads could be driven comfortably and easily at 50 m.p.h. with one hand on the wheel. Although driving one handed is not recommended, this experience confirmed that StabilRide results in a ride and handling that are far superior to that of a conventional, passive-suspension system.
“With the combination of StabilRide and Newell’s standard, EasiSteer enhanced power steering,” said Blade, “a Newell coach now delivers a superlative ride, stable handling, and driving ease that other coaches of its type simply can’t match.”
For more information about Newell StabilRide, call Boyd Vanover at 1-888-3NEWELL (1-888-363-9355).
Some 50 employees from high-end motorhome builder Newell Coach Corp. today (May 27) were in Joplin in southwest Missouri carrying supplies and helping clean up following last Sunday’s tornado that ripped though the city of 50,000.
Newell, with headquarters in Miami, Okla., about 25 miles south of Joplin, sustained no damage during the horrific tornado that killed more than 130 people.
”Tornadoes can be amazingly surgical,” said Karl Blade, president of the 150-employee motorhome manufacturer that builds coaches retailing for $1.5 million and up.
Newell’s volunteers weren’t sure what they would be doing until after they arrived – or even if they would have cell phone service to provide communications.
”They ended up clearing debris,” Blade said. ”Many buildings in Joplin were destroyed to the foundation. But what do you do with all the scrap wood, metal and broken glass? And how do you pay for it? About 4,000 structures were destroyed. It’s a huge mess.”
Before leaving this morning, volunteers loaded a Newell coach with water, food, bread, light tools and chainsaw oil donated by the local Wal-Mart. ”It’s really been a community effort in Miami,” Blade said.
Newell Coach Corp. was the premier sponsor of a March 19 fundraiser that helped raise $200,000 for the United Way effort in Indio, Calif.
Motorcoach Country Club and Desert Shores Motorcoach Resort, both of Indio, hosted the fundraising event and auction, The Desert Sun, Palm Springs, reported.
More than 250 residents and guests of the two RV resorts attended the event at Miramonte Resort in Indian Wells and helped raise the $200,000.
There were three silent auctions prior to the dinner and a live auction called during dinner.
Auctioneer Joe Demarte kept the pace lively and entertainment was provided by trumpet soloist, Johnny Zell, along with orchestra musicians.
“It was an incredible evening where the generosity was overwhelming and heartwarming,” said Kay Ladner, general manager of Motorcoach Country Club. “Residents of these high-end motorcoach resorts often joke about being ‘trailer trash with cash’ — and they proved it on that Saturday night.”
Newell Coach Corp. announced that its new EasiSteer steering system will be standard on all new Newell motorcoach deliveries beginning in July 2011. According to a release from the Miami, Okla.-based luxury coach manufacturer, the new system also will be available as a retrofit option on all 2012 models delivered before July 2011.
Developed by Newell Coach in partnership with TRW Automotive, EasiSteer not only improves the steering ease and handling of the Newell but it also offers a level of comfort, stability and safety that was previously unobtainable in motorcoaches of this size.
“EasiSteer is the most significant advance in large-vehicle steering precision and driver comfort since hydraulic power steering was introduced decades ago,” said Newell President Karl Blade.
The new system achieves its advanced effects by continuously adjusting pull compensation for the road’s crown and side winds. It significantly reduces the amount of steering effort required while increasing the amount of self-centering feedback that is provided to the driver. The result is a new combination of very low steering effort and increased straight-line stability. The system is said to give the Newell a feel that is comparable to a luxury car.
“EasiSteer is used in combination with Newell’s state-of-the-art steering tag axle and rear-axle steering,” said Pete Peterson, Newell’s EasiSteer project engineer. “This enables the vehicle to execute tight turns easily and with a high degree of driver comfort that other vehicles of similar size can’t match. We’ve achieved a new level of driving ease and handling in the luxury motorhome industry.”