Recreational Vehicle Manufacturers Association of Australia (RVMAA) figures show total production of 21,164 caravans and RVs for the year, up 32% on 2009, Sydney’s The Daily Telegraph reported.
RVMAA president Richard Raven said this was a record for RVs and caravans built for leisure use.
“The last time we saw more than 20,000 vans and RVs built in Australia was in 1980, so we really have witnessed something of a ‘J curve’ in demand from then to now,” Raven said.
“Only in the 1970s did we see higher figures, and many of those were built for on-site use in caravan parks and for mining towns and relief accommodation after disasters.
“Growth in caravanning reflects the steadily improving the quality and appointments of locally made RVs, with owners realising they can travel with all of the luxuries of home.”
Most popular of the towable caravans and trailers were traditional caravans at 45%, followed by pop-tops at 27% and camper trailers at 19%.
Leading the non-towable slide-ons, fifth-wheelers, campervans and motorhomes were C-Class units — built on light truck chassis and typically weighing 9,900 pounds to 11,880 pounds which accounted for 4.5%.
Raven said local RVs and caravans were designed and built to suit Australia’s unique conditions and to meet all tastes and budgets.
“Although people may imagine that most vans and RVs are sold to ‘grey nomads’ spending their golden years on the road, caravans actually have a much more diverse appeal,” he said.
“There have always been young families buying into economical family holidays, but there are also adventurers with off-road rigs and retirees doing the ‘bucket list’ one-off trip around Australia, and then discovering they have caught the habit long-term.
“The beauty of owning an RV is that people can go where they want to when they want to, and at their own pace — and economically too.”
Australian RV and van sales 2010 were as follows:
- Towable: 19,709 (14,827 in 2009) plus 33%.
- Non-towable: 1,455 (1,226 in 2009) plus 19%.
- Total: 21,164 (16,053 in 2009) plus 32%.
Meanwhile, RVMAA membership continues to grow and it is estimated that members now produce over 90% of the RVs sold in Australia.