RV PRO

March '16

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rv-pro.com MARCH 2016 • RV PRO • 13 RVIA is forecasting strong growth for the B and C markets again in 2016 (see Figure 2). One result of consumers' rediscovery of the market compact motorized models is the intense jockeying for sales leadership – especially among the Class B builders. Just four years ago, Roadtrek was the undis- puted B leader with more than one-third of the market and Winnebago was a dis- tant fourth with less than half that share (see Figure 3A). Fast-forward to the end of 2015 and Winnebago had moved into the top spot, with Thor challenging Roadtrek for second place (see Figure 3B), Statistical Surveys data shows. With more than 14 manufacturers building B+ product on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis alone, the field promises to be very competitive again in 2016. Meanwhile, Class C shipments sur- passed those of Class A motorhomes in 2015 and are expected to do so again in 2016, based upon the latest forecast from the RV Industry Association (refer to Figure 2). Data from Statistical Surveys shows some change in market player share between 2012 and 2015 (see Figures 4A and 4B), with Thor and Winnebago slightly increasing market share at the expense of their rivals. To find out more what's behind the pop- ularity of smaller motorhomes, RV PRO took a look at the 2016 entries from four innovative manufacturers: Winnebago's Fuse, Jayco's "reimagined" Melbourne, Renegade RV's Vienna and Triple E/Lei- sure Vans' Unity. Jayco: 'Reimagined' Melbourne Gains Traction Jayco took a big step in 2015 when it dropped the Ford E-450 cutaway chassis for its Melbourne and adopted the shorter but pricier Mercedes 3500 Sprinter plat- form. The "reimagined" Melbourne – in that blurred zone of being a Class C or a B+ motorhome – evolved directly from customer wishes, says David Josephthal, Figure 1 A, B & C Sales: 2012-2015 RETAIL SALES A Y/O/Y B Y/O/Y C Y/O/Y Sales Change Sales Change Sales Change 2012 13,326 + 6.5% 1,771 +31.4% 10,656 +8.4% 2013 16,952 +27.2% 1,943 +9.7% 14,567 +36.7% 2014 19,451 +14.7% 2,455 +26.3% 17,026 +16.9% 2015* 19,953 +8.7% 2,720 +17.5% 18,422 +13.1% *11-month total. Percentage represents change from first 11 months of 2014. Source: Statistical Surveys Jayco's Melbourne has been reimagined for 2016 with the switch to a Mercedes Sprinter chassis that offers more floorplan options and better fuel economy.

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