Have just read this on another forum, may be of interest to some. The Swift Group, Britain’s only manufacturer of touring caravans, motorhomes and holiday homes, has announced a major review of its multi-brand operation to combat dealing in a smaller market which is being seriously affected by the current economic downturn. The company will refocus all of its activities on the Swift, Sterling and Sprite brands of tourers and Swift, Bessacarr and Autocruise brands of motorhomes. The other brands will be phased out over the coming months. The Abbey and Ace brands of touring caravans and the Ace brand of motorhomes will cease to be manufactured when all customer and dealer orders have been fulfilled. “All existing orders, including those placed at the recent NEC Show, will be produced and existing customers of these brands will continue to be looked after by the Swift Group. The move to this new strategy will be handled carefully to make sure we have a smooth transition which should not effect existing customers in any way,” Commercial Director Nick Page commented. With major shares of both the touring caravan and motorhome markets, this new strategy is aimed at simplifying the company’s operations to enable Swift and its dealer network to trade effectively in a reduced market and still offer the customer a wide choice of products and styles. “The current economic downturn gives us an ideal opportunity to tackle the challenge of restructuring the company to operate in the different world we all face going forward. The current conditions are likely to be with us for several years and by taking this action now it puts us in great shape to cover all our markets from a more manageable cost base. The business had become too complex for the size of the market,” Chairman Peter Smith commented. Although the company will stop producing certain brands sometime next year, owners of these products will still receive full aftersales and warranty service as normal. All dealers of Swift Group brands will be able to offer one or more of the new portfolio of products depending on their circumstances, once again giving customers maximum choice. From next year, the touring caravan product range will consist of the Swift Charisma, Swift Challenger and Swift Conqueror ranges, Sterling Europa, Eccles and Elite ranges offering a total of 41 models. These two brands offer customers completely different styles and colour schemes, with a further choice of soft furnishing options in each range. The Sprite range of 6 models will continue to offer outstanding value at the starter end of the market. Motorhome products will be available under the Swift, Bessacarr and Autocruise brands, providing a wide choice of both modern and more traditional design. Swift motorhomes will comprise the Sundance, Bolero, Voyager and Kon-Tiki ranges, with Bessacarr coming in the E400, E500, E600 and E700 ranges, totalling 35 models with both overcab and low profile designs. Once again, they also offer a wide choice of soft furnishing options. The Swift line up is completed with the Mondial range of camper vans. Autocruise will continue to offer three ranges of coachbuilt models, the Star, Star Plus and Driving ranges and four camper vans including the new MPV style Pulse model. The company will continue to manufacture the Swift ranges of Holiday Homes that have set new standards in design and style in this market. The Burgundy, Moselle, Chamonix and new Champagne ranges will continue. The new ranges will be on show at the Manchester Central Caravan and Motorhome Show 22 to 25 January, The Scottish Caravan Show at the SECC 5 to 8 February and the Boat, Caravan and Outdoor Show at the NEC February 17 to 22.