USA RV Industry in Decline

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Tony Santara, May 3, 2008.

  1. Tony Santara

    Tony Santara Funster

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    According to an American rv forum the RV manfacturers have been having a tough time of late with 4 company's closing their doors this year

    Alfa Leisure (Alfa See Ya)
    Travel Supreme
    National RV
    Western RV(Alpine & Alpenlite)

    Cutting back on production

    Country Coach
    Winnebago
    Monaco
     
  2. American Dream

    American Dream Read Only Funster

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    Crikey Tony,

    Let's just hope the trend doesn't "cross the water".:Eeek:

    Fuel cost is going to play a major part in people's lifestyles in the future Methinks.:Sad:
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2008
  3. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Imagine if the US government taxed fuel as much as Gordon does here:Eek!: There would not be an RV industry. Or the engine sizes might reduce. The Price of fuel has always been an issue here, and whilst we moaned it was not really that prohibitive, but now.. It is, or it's becoming, a real issue for everyone. Just Going to Peterborough and back the fuel cost me £300+ :Eek!: A 5000 mile round trip to Morocco will cost me around £3000 :Eeek:and even if I traded the RV for a Fiat we will probably paying more than £1000.

    Those RVer Snowbirds travelling from a cold Boston to Florida say a round trip of 3000 miles are just not going to do it if those prices get much higher, if they are not using their RV's they will probably not buy a new one and the rot begins.

    Will it happen here, yes but on a much smaller scale, most European motorhomes are pretty fuel efficient. Will the UK RV industry shrink and imports slow up? I reckon it is happening already.
     
  4. Tony Santara

    Tony Santara Funster

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    Those RVer Snowbirds travelling from a cold Boston to Florida say a round trip of 3000 miles are just not going to do it if those prices get much higher, if they are not using their RV's they will probably not buy a new one and the rot begins.

    Jim
    You got the point exactly..... it's all to do with fuel prices affecting sales
    The Snowbirds and the Fulltimers are not going to be travelling
    Ergo they are not going to be renewing their RV's
     
  5. Road Runner

    Road Runner Read Only Funster

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    Fuel is becoming and issue for me sadly.

    Peterborough cost me £150 in fuel. Sadly now living in Wales every meet seems to be 200 miles away making it a 400 mile plus round trip.

    Having change the Kia for a diesel car has halved the toad cost doing 50 mpg so helps a little as most of you know Irina has me driving everywhere:Doh:

    Saying all of this it is my only pass time and keeps me sane in these tough times I am going through at the moment (dad really unwell sadly:Confused:)

    Let hope things globally level out.
     
  6. TJ-RV

    TJ-RV Deleted User

    Tony,

    Fuel prices are a part of the issue, but far from being "all".

    Most snowbirds and fulltimers I know don't "renew" their RVs; They hang onto them for years and periodically update them rather than replace them. Higher fuel costs might limit how far and how often they travel, so they might stay in one place for longer; that doesn't necessarily translate into an impact on RV sales from this segment of the population. The purchase price of a new RV is a far bigger deterrent to these folks buying a replacement than higher fuel prices.

    IMHO there are far bigger factors affecting our RV industry at the present time, including:

    • The housing & credit crisis has caused unprecedented bank foreclosures. Folks who have lost or are about to lose their house are not about to buy a new RV.
    • The credit crunch means that many folks can no longer qualify for large loans.
    • Similarly, equity loans (using the equity in a house as collateral) to pay for large ticket items are tougher to get.
    • House prices (and therefore values) have declined sharply, resulting in far less equity in folks' houses.
    • The overall state of the U.S. economy has consumers worried about their jobs. Someone who isn't sure they'll have a job tomorrow is not going to be buying a new RV.
    • U.S. industry relies heavily on sustained growth, a large part of which comes from increasing the overall size of the market. The next kicker for growth in the RV industry was projected to be baby boomers coming close to retirement, or at least getting to that point in their lives where leisure & travel would play a more dominant role. For reasons similar to those above, many baby boomers have delayed purchase of large ticket items such as RVs.
    • Some (many?) baby boomers, unsure of what's going to happen to their economic future, are choosing to work longer rather than retiring to the RV lifestyle.
    • We're in an election year with most folks not knowing what the future holds. A jittery consumer results in large expenditures being put off.
    • Don't underestimate the psychological impact of the Iraq war on the U.S. consumer.

    There are, of course, folks who aren't impacted by any of the above &/or won't let any of them affect their buying decisions. While we were at a recent rally to celebrate the opening of DeMartini's new sales and service facility, Tim DeMartini sold quite a new coaches. If you saw the activity, and interest level, you wouldn't think there was any slowdown in the RV industry.

    Time for me to hit the sack; I'm too tired to think clearly.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2008
  7. stagman

    stagman Deleted User

    Don't be sad living in Wales,especially West.You got Carmarthenshire,Pembrokshire and Ceredigion coast's all within 50 miles you should get there on around £20,
     
  8. johnsandywhite

    johnsandywhite Read Only Funster

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    :Cool: That is one of the reasons why I was seriously thinking of buying and leaving an RV in the USA. Then travel over there for the Winter instead of being here in Spain. The cost of getting to Spain would equate to the flight to the USA. Travel would then be cheaper in the USA than here. :thumb:
     
  9. Floozie2

    Floozie2 Read Only Funster

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    A 5000 mile round trip to Morocco will cost me around £3000 :Eeek:and even if I traded the RV for a Fiat we will probably paying more than £1000.

    Probably more Jim. If you went for one of the larger twin axle Fiat based m/momes with the 3.0l motor (Burstner, Euramobil, Bessacar), you'd be hard pressed to get more than 20mpg from what I've read. Don't know about you but my Journey gets 15-17 on average, so it's all pretty close. I'll take the extra space and comfort for a couple of mpg anytime! That said, the price of fuel is getting pretty silly and I think it's got a way to go yet so the news isn't going to get anymore cheerful. :cry:

    Richard
     
  10. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Hi John. That is a serious wintering option as fuel prices rice. We were discussing this the other day, even with 5 of us the return tickets to the states will be cheaper than an 8.1L Petrol RV to Spain. It wont happen though, because we wouldn't fly the dog there and back
     
  11. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Hi Richard, Yes I could not go back, I have had lots of European motorhomes and thoroughly enjoyed ownership of each one. But every time I contemplate down -sizing I go and sit in even the largest Euro and feel claustrophobic. We need and enjoy that space in the RV but it sure does come at a price when you want to move it down the road.
     
  12. TJ-RV

    TJ-RV Deleted User

    Forgot to mention in my last message ....

    While at the recent DeMartini rally, we got quite serious about a new Monaco Dynasty. We got as far as sitting with a Monaco rep and filling in an order form for a custom ordered coach, but decided not to buy yet. Although the 45 foot coach with a 500hp engine will get roughly 6mpg compared with our current 8.7mpg (those are U.S. gallons)., at no time did fuel consumption or fuel price enter into the equation. We decided to hold off for other reasons, one or more of which were in the list in my prior message.
     
  13. Tony Santara

    Tony Santara Funster

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    Hi Tom
    Once again your enlightening post has cleared up some confusion it's good to have you with us to keep us informed of whats going on Stateside :thumb:

    Stay healthy we need more posts
     
  14. TJ-RV

    TJ-RV Deleted User

    Thanks for the kind words Tony. I get a little long winded at times, but hope it doesn't come across as unnecessarily argumentative; It's just my desire to present a different perspective &/or to set the record straight. For sure, living here for 30 years provides a different perspective of the U.S. than when I used to merely visit.

    On the flip side, I try to convey a "Brit perspective" to Americans, but sometimes find I'm out of date on life in the UK.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2008
  15. potjoe

    potjoe Read Only Funster

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    costs!

    Hi All,haveing run a Diesel car for some years have now gone over to petrol why,well the cost of diesel is appox 10p more than petrol per ltr and we all say X miles per gallon yes! but if you stop and think Ltrs and gallons=appox 4 1/2ltrs =1 gallon =4 1/2x10p=45p more for diesel per gallon.Plus cost of the diesel engine ££££ more,me think stay with petrol engine.Now we have a small micra and we get about 48mpg and to fill the tank up is less cost than to fill up with petrol.hope you all unstand what i am trying to say!.Regards john
     
  16. ruffingitsmoothly

    ruffingitsmoothly Read Only Funster

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    Well said Joe it has all been a big con changing to litres from gallons can you imagine the uproar if the fuel companies put fuel up by 9p a gallon at a time? But that is virtually what is happening when fuel goes up by 2p a litre!

    Also what is the idea of 118.9 pence a litre? Is it possible to buy just a litre? If so how would I get .1p change?? Surely this pricing structure should not be allowed!! :Angry::Angry:

    Right whilst I'm started why do supermarkets have all these buy one get one free? Why don't they just half the price?:Confused::Confused: Surely again this just leads to waste, as I am sure no one leaves their 'free' purchase behind and so takes it anyway wether they need it or not!!!!

    Regards Pat
     
  17. TJ-RV

    TJ-RV Deleted User

    I'm reminded of the switch to decimal currency; A 1 pence increase in new money was really 2.4 pennies in old money. Since they also eliminated the ha'penny, there was a lot of rounding off with prices. Everyone rounded up, of course, not down.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2008
  18. potjoe

    potjoe Read Only Funster

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    Just of all the 0.01`s

    Hi All,just think of the 0.01`s make they do`not give you the change when you buy say 20ltrs do they?just round it of to the next £.
     
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