California-based multilocation dealer Mike Thompson RV announced that it has added Thor Motor Coach’s Vegas, a 24-foot Class A motorhome the company is marketing as a “Recreational Utility Vehicle” (RUV).
“We understand RVers have similar goals when they purchase an RV, such as spending more time with their family, summer vacations, or retiring and hitting the open road to see this beautiful country,” said Mike Rosenbaum, director of sales for Mike Thompson RV. “However, today we are finding that RV owners are also looking to use their units more in their daily lives. They want to be able to jump in their RV on Friday afternoon and head out just for the weekend. This new Class A product could not make it any easier.”
Built on the Ford E-350, the Vegas RUV has been designed for easy maneuvering. Even with the shorter length, it offers a 5,000-pound hitch for towing and a large pass-through storage area while its lighter weight translates to improved fuel efficiency.
Mike Thompson RV, marking its 41st anniversary, operates five locations in Southern California. For more information visit http://www.mikethompson.com.
Thor Motor Coach is officially up and running at its second site in Wakarusa, Ind., following the startup of the company’s first production line at the new facilities there last week.
The move into the former Monaco facility comes at a good time for Thor Motor Coach (TMC). “The motorhome market is up 30% this year, which is very robust,” said TMC President Jeff Kime. “We are up even more at 55% and are gaining market share.”
The Elkhart, Ind.-based subsidiary of Thor Industries Inc. moved a production line from Elkhart to Wakarusa, transferring 250 employees with it. Thor itself moved its corporate headquarters from Jackson Center, Ohio, to Elkhart earlier this year.
“We will be starting a second production line in Wakarusa next month because we are at capacity in Elkhart,” Kime said, adding that the company plans to add another 100 workers in Wakarusa and another 100 workers in Elkhart over the next 90 days.
“This enables us to expand production lines here in Elkhart and actually add another production line. It’s a win-win,” he added. “It increases our capacity, and our output here.”
The 500,000-square-foot addition to TMC’s nearly 700,000 square feet in Elkhart also opens up future expansion possibilities. “We have longer-term plans. There’s room for a third production line in Wakarusa and more available land,” Kime said. “We do not quite have volume to fill it at the moment, but we have plans for the future.”
The former Monaco facility became available earlier this year when Allied Specialty Vehicle acquired Monaco and Holiday Rambler from Navistar Inc. and moved motorhome production to Decatur, Ind.
Bob Martin, president and CEO of Thor Industries, said TMC production will utilize the biggest portion of the extensive manufacturing campus but that the company is still developing plans for other segments — including the paint facilities for use by Thor division Keystone RV Co. “We do have another phase of utilizing plants for other pieces. I don’t have the full picture yet,” Martin said.
Thor Motor Coach will host a job fair at its new manufacturing facility at 606 Nelson’s Parkway in Wakarusa, Ind., from 9 a.m. through 1 p.m. Friday.
As reported by the South Bend Tribune, all manufacturing departments will be featured at the fair. Thor officials could not be reached immediately for comment.
Thor bought the plant, which once housed Monaco Coach and then Navistar International, from Allied Specialty Vehicles in June. The 1 million-square-foot plant once employed 520 people and served as a backdrop to President Barack Obama’s visit to Elkhart County in August 2009.
Thor already employs more than 6,000 people in Elkhart County.
Bob Martin, president and CEO of Thor Industries Inc., said in June that the plant purchase would result in additional jobs at some point. “Long term, we are definitely going to need people,” he said. “It could be a very great opportunity for many people.”
A pre-employment drug screen will be required at the job fair, according to the release, which was sent from the Wakarusa Chamber of Commerce.
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Thor Motor Coach (TMC) showcased its diverse lineup of new products to a legion of dealers Wednesday (Sept. 18) during the second day of the Elkhart County RV Open House in northern Indiana.
According to a press release, dealers were enthusiastic about the company’s 2014 product offerings as Thor’s display at the RV/MH Hall of Fame included nearly 50 motorhomes.
Along with the “game-changing introduction” of the RUV (Recreational Utility Vehicle), existing products featured new floorplans, sleek decors, amenity upgrades and standard features. Product debuts included:
• The A.C.E. gas motorhome added the 30.2 bunk model, functionally designed to offer family friendly extra sleeping capacity.
• The Hurricane and Windsport expanded its floorplan offerings with the addition of the 27K floorplan. The most compact floorplan to date, the 27K offers features like a king bed, side vision cameras and automatic leveling jacks.
• The luxury Challenger gas motorhome showcased a creative bath-and-a-half 37LX floorplan. This full-wall slide new model offers ample living and storage areas, making extended trips comfortable.
• A newcomer in the market, the Miramar line includes the family friendly 34.3 floorplan with bunk beds in a full basement model. This stylish coach introduced earlier this year, continues to gain popularity in the market place, according to TMC.
• A new ultraluxury Tuscany 44MT floorplan offers a sleek and sophisticated decor. The 44-foot diesel pusher with rear bath joins three other floorplans in the flagship Tuscany lineup. The Tuscany XTE 40GQ floorplan features a new front cap with vertical headlights and an expansive 436 square feet of living space.
• Boasting the largest market share growth for any diesel pusher in North America, according to TMC, the Palazzo presented the new 35.1 floorplan featuring abundant basement storage, innovative triple-slide layout and Denver Mattress king bed.
• Four Winds and Chateau Class C’s stress comfortable living spaces with the 31E and 31W floorplans. Both models feature a full-wall slide, but with a twist. The 31E is directed towards families with bunk beds on the driver side of the coach, away from the patio area. The 31W provides huge storage spaces throughout the living area and basement.
• The diesel-powered 35SG Outlaw toy hauler is equipped with a Ford F-550 cab chassis. This is the first Class C model offered in the Outlaw. Standard features include a 6.7-liter PowerStroke diesel engine with 660-pound-foot of torque, 10,000-pound towing capacity, automotive frameless windows and a patio deck with awning.
“Response on the new products has been tremendous,” says Jon Krider from Thor Motor Coach. “Dealers are here in full force and we are extremely grateful for their partnership. Our team at Thor Motor Coach has pushed creativity and product design into overdrive. We are driven by the feedback we receive from consumers who own our motorhomes. This is just a sample of things to come from our team.”
For more information go to http://ThorMotorCoach.com.
Thor Motor Coach introduced a whole new class of products, the Recreational Utility Vehicle (RUV), at Tuesday’s (Sept. 17) opening of the Elkhart County RV Oen House.
Situated at the RV/MH Hall in Elkhart, Ind., the Thor Motor Coach exhibit also featured a wide array of models from its existing line of Class A gas, diesel pushers, Class B-plus, Super C and Class C motorhomes, according to a news release.
The new RUVs, aptly titled Axis and Vegas, were designed for the consumer wanting a small, easy-to-maneuver vehicle, but not wanting a traditional RV. Sized like a large SUV, the unit measures just over 25 long, 8 feet wide and 11 feet tall, helping it fit into the tightest of spaces most traditional RVs can’t go.
These small dimensions lower the overall center of gravity, to help safety and stability while driving. A proven and powerful Ford V-10 engine has plenty of muscle for smooth highway merging, while sipping fuel along the way. A contemporary exterior with aerodynamic windshield and cap is extenuated by Thor Motor Coach’s exclusive HD-MAX, High-Definition exterior. Frameless, automotive styled, windows continue the sleek styling on the exterior.
Although small in stature, the coach offers an innovative design with multiple sleeping areas, including a drop down overhead bunk. The rear twin beds even convert to a king size bed. High-tech features include a 6-inch touch screen display audio with camera display, iPod adapter with radio interface and multiple USB and 12V ports, along with 110V plugs. For eco-conscious buyers the LED celling lighting reduces energy usage, while the window tint helps to reduce dependence on running the air conditioner.
“The new line-up of RUV is sized like a large SUV, and most importantly they are priced like one. A family can own one with payments that are less than most sport utility vehicles,” says Dana Simon, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Thor Motor Coach. “We see this unit fulfilling a need those who are new to RVing, those who are seasoned veterans looking to downsize and anything in between. The RUV product segment is going to grow as it answers questions concerning affordability and size some consumers may have with traditional larger motorhomes.”
For more information go to http://ThorMotorCoach.com, dealers should stop by the Thor Open House at the RV Hall of Fame.
Look for a slew of new floorplans from Thor Motor Coach during next week’s Elkhart County RV Open House, including a fourth floorplan — the 40-foot 40GQ — in the Tuscany XTE diesel pusher series which has a completely new look inside and out for 2014.
The single-axle Tuscany XTE, built on a Freightliner XCR chassis with a 360-hp ISB diesel engine, has a new front cap with vertical headlights and LED accents along with a redesigned rear cap featuring larger taillights and an integrated halogen docking light for backing up in low-light situations.
With a $268,000 base MSRP, the Tuscany XTE cockpit also has been redesigned and the interior reworked with new decors, upgraded two-tone furniture and king-size Denver mattress.
Thor also has introduced the Miramar, a new all-gas brand built on a 22,000-pound GVWR Ford F-53 chassis equipped with a 362-hp Triton V10 engine.
“The Miramar is a ‘couples coach’ intended to be used more than a couple of weekends a year,” Jon Krider, Thor Motor Coach director of marketing, told RVBUSINESS.com.
The Miramar, with MSRPs from $138,775 to $141,000, debuts with four 32- to 35-foot floorplans with up to three slideouts, each of which can be equipped with an optional dropdown bed over the cockpit.
Krider said that Thor Motor Coach expects heavy traffic during the Open House. “It’s going to be better this year in the past,” Krider said. “We are bringing 15 or 16 new floorplans, product lines and innovations.”
Thor Motor Coach has introduced the 35SK Super C motorhome built on a heavy-duty Ford F550 platform and offering RVers “exceptional living space.”
According to a press release, the 35SK creates an ideal lounging area at the center of the coach. The TV cabinet is located straight across from an ample sofa and dinette configuration equipped with a built-in slideout that creates an “entertaining hub.”
For the high-tech aficionados, a cab-over home theater entertainment center is available with an optional 50-inch LCD TV and sound bar, replacing the standard 32-inch LCD TV.
The interior is loaded with residential designs including rich leatherette covered furniture complemented by overhead LED lighting. In the kitchen, a residential 18 cubic foot refrigerator and 30-inch over-the-range microwave allow ease of food preparation. An oversizde pantry and pull-out countertop adds space and convenience.
The bedroom boasts a king size Denver Mattress sleep system and abundant storage. The split bath with a private stool highlights yet another ingenious use of space and design in the 35SK.
The Ford F-550 platform is known for its “ample carrying capacity and commanding towing ability,” according to Thor Motor Coach, and is powered by a PowerStroke 6.7-liter diesel engine that pumps out 300-hp and 620-lb.ft. of torque. The engine is completely housed out in front of the passenger compartment offering a passenger car ride.
“With great feedback from our customers on the original 33SW, we were able to design and bring to market the 35SK the needs of Class C buyer wanting additional space, with diesel power,” according to Joel Grimm, national sales manager for gas motorhomes at Thor Motor Coach. “The 35SK delivers on all levels, better driving comfort, large towing capacity, creative and spacious interior design, and room to entertain a gathering of one or eight.”
For more information call 800-860-5658 or click here.
The all-new Miramar Class A motorhome is heating up the market with a full basement design, according to a press release.
“It is exciting to bring to the market a new premium gas Class A motorhome. Many consumers are looking for luxury accommodations in 32- to 36-foot models and this new Miramar really delivers,” said Joel Grimm, national sales manager for gas motorhomes.
The Miramar features four floorplans with designs and sleeping accommodations to “fit a consumer’s needs,” according to Grimm. An HD-MAX exterior with partial paint design is the standard finish, while full-body paint packages are optional. A wide open basement structure allows for multiple pass-through storage areas.
The Miramar is built on Ford F53 chassis supported by 22 1/2-inch tires and a 22,000-pound GVWR. A highly stylized front cap complete with LED accent lighting around the headlights sets off the front of the coach while the rear cap has an integrated fuel fill, allowing access from either side of the coach. High-mounted, halogen spot lights are also mounted in the rear to better illuminate surroundings in low light.
Other premium features on the Miramar include a three-camera monitoring system, power patio awning and 100-gallon fresh water tank.
The Miramar interior offers rich furniture fabrics while residential vinyl covers the entire floor of the coach for easy cleaning. Other features include two-tone furniture, blackout roller shades and an optional drop-down overhead bunk that increases sleeping space and stores out of sight when not in use. All floorplans feature the Denver Mattress sleep system with king-size beds in select models.
The galley is equipped with a solid-surface countertop, 30-inch over-the-range microwave and residential Whirlpool refrigerator. An 1800-watt inverter powers the refrigerator while the automatic generator start will fire up the Onan 5,500-watt generator if battery power runs low.
Thor Motor Coach announced the introduction of its 2014 Tuscany XTE and Tuscany diesel motorhomes, hitting the market with a “brand new look,” according to a press release.
Fresh front and rear caps along with new exterior paint packages highlight the overall value provided throughout the entire lineup of Thor’s luxury Class A Tuscany motorhomes.
The Tuscany XTE’s new front cap is engineered to maximize visibility for both driver and passenger. The front entry door is the widest in the industry, allowing more space to enter the coach with bulky items like groceries. Frameless windows throughout set off the coach while also providing functionality. The Tuscany diesel pusher’s exteriors are distinctive and attractive with a very high-end appearance for 2014.
New elongated residential tile floor, tiled kitchen backsplash, and LG Hi-Macs solid surface countertops round out the Tuscany XTE’s luxurious interior. New furniture styles include upgraded pillows and eye-catching bedding while headboards add a high-end accent in the bedroom.
Ride quality is enhanced with the addition of an independent front suspension, similar to the system used on a Prevost bus. Large Michelin 295/80R series tires are specifically formulated for motorhome use and the exterior storage compartment doors electronically lock by way of wireless remote or interior central lock switch.
An elegant inlaid tile pattern on the floor of the Tuscany adds a touch of elegance. Comfortable and inviting, Kustom-Fit furniture surrounds the living space. As a bonus, the Tuscany has a cedar-lined shoe storage box located in the rear wardrobe.
A nontag axle 40-foot model has been added the Tuscany lineup with the 40RX floorplan. The 40RX features the style and amenities found in bigger Tuscany tag-axle models, including an Aqua-Hot heating system, 450-hp Cummins engine and hardwood cabinetry.
“We are really excited about the overall success of the Tuscany XTE and Tuscany lines,” said Adam Gudger, national sales manager for diesel motorhomes. “The numbers speak volumes on the hard work and dedication our team has poured into the design and building of the Tuscany. Year to date, the Tuscany brand has had a 58% market share increase among all diesel-powered Class A motorhomes.”
Officials in Wakarusa, Ind., got some very exciting news Monday (June 3). As reported by the Elkhart Truth, Thor Industries Inc. announced it is taking over the beleaguered campus that used to house Monaco Coach, and more recently motorhome operations for Navistar RV, on the town’s south side.
“This is awesome. I’m ecstatic. It couldn’t be better for us,” said Jeff Troxel, Wakarusa Town Manager. “It adds stability to the town. We haven’t had stability on that side of town for years.”
Bob Martin, president and COO of Thor, said it’s too early to know how many jobs will be created as the company plans to move part of its Thor Motor Coach subsidiary along with painting operations for Keystone RV Co. into the Wakarusa site.
“We’ll have a clearer picture of what our plans are,” Martin said. “I know people always want to know how it’s going to affect people in jobs, but long term it should be good for the county and the community and we’d like to see it come back to production numbers it was at years ago.”
The move will mean new production for Thor Motor Coach and won’t reduce any of those jobs in Elkhart, he said. “It will be in addition to our plant in Elkhart. The Elkhart work force will stay the same,” Martin said.
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