It looks as if the Great RV Manufacturing Slowdown of 2022 is about to begin.
Kathryn Thompson, CEO of Thompson Research Group, said her firm’s analysis of the current and future RV sales market shows its time for RV manufacturers to apply the brakes to new-unit production.
Officials at Thor Industries, the largest producer of RVs in the world, supported Thompson’s analysis while discussing Thor’s third-quarter earnings.
Thor Industries’ leaders said they agreed with Thompson that RV dealer lot stocking levels are most directly affected by rising interest costs, while consumer demand is driven by inflation factors like fuel costs, groceries, and utility bills.
Thompson said the net result of all those factors is that Thor would have to slow their RV manufacturing by about 25% for the rest of 2022 in order to not blow past its full-year wholesale RV shipment estimates.
“Management indicated the company has not reduced production to that level yet but had already pulled back on towable production in April to adjust volumes downward,” Thompson said. “We expect a gradual decline downward through the summer as the industry gauges retail demand, with potential for significant deceleration above the 25% declines near the end of the year.”
It’s worth noting that Thor recently announced that it has achieved the number one spot among RV manufacturers in the building of Class B motorhomes as that category’s growth continues to surge among new RV purchasers. In 2021 Class B RVs represented about 22% of all motorhome registrations in North America. By April 2022, that had grown to 30.5%.
To illustrate even further, in 2020 Class B motorhomes were 16% of the market, up from 11% of the market in 2019.
RV economists say supply chain woes are finally starting to ease
Yeah because it has nothing to do with the fact they are made of paper staples and cardboard. The craftsmanship is outrageous nowadays they are all junk. These companies should be ashamed of the final product they put out.
Right on bro!!!
With the Feds giant hike on interest it’s going to really slow down
Define what is meant by “giant”. 50 basis points? 100 basis points?
I built my own camping trailer. It may not have all the bells and whistles but it also doesn’t have an outstanding loan either. As gas prices continue to rise and they will, folks who are paying storage fees on a RV that they are using only two or three times a year will decide to get rid of their rigs. Those of us with money and patience will be finding great deals to pick from.
We need someone like Ralph Nader to launch a class action lawsuit against the manufacturers of rv’s and give them a rude awakening. A lot if dealers need to be woken up also. The current situation is a pitiful effort by both.
Look up Forest River 5th Wheels class action (20 years of unsafe wiring), and a Class Action against Dometic absorption refrigerators (25 years of exploding refrigerators). The class actions are out there and I’ll bet more are coming!
The quality [or lack there of] of RV manufacturing is an issue that won’t disappear anytime soon.
As long as the market keeps supporting these inferior products they will continue to be made. placing assembly line construction and manufacturing technology into the build process would increase the prices of these units significantly.
I believe consumers would be willing to pay considerably higher prices if units matched the quality of [for example] automobiles.
The industry knows what it is doing. And it knows that people will not be willing to pay considerably higher prices.
This is so true. I’ve been looking into full-time RV living in the next 5-8 years (retirement) . And I see so many YouTube videos of very poor QA. Bad welds, wiring, stripped out lug nuts. And the prices are just outrageous. I’m just glad so many with the expertise are willing to share their knowledge. I’m still learning.
I just don’t see why people continue to pay for an rv unless they are not doing their due diligence in research prior. If they did, they would see very low quality, and the prices are way beyond what they are worth. If I didn’t already own I would definitely put off buying until prices go below 2019 cost and quality shoots a lot higher than what we are getting today. Research people research and wait it out.
Excellent post – spot on!
I’ve been wating for 24 years.. I Just kept my1998. It’s quality wasn’t great!, but It’s mostly fixed now!
One issue is that prices won’t come down… they can’t. Only thing OEM’s could do is offer manufacturer rebates, but as far as prices OEM’s sell to dealers… they can’t come back down because of existing inventory… just crazy people still buy these things… I will never understand it.