Saturday, December 3, 2022


RV shipments expected to gain 20 percent in 2021


If you think the RV parks and campgrounds of America are especially crowded, just wait. It could get a whole lot worse.

Wholesale RV shipments are forecast to gain nearly 20 percent to 502,582 units in 2021 after totaling 423,628 units in 2020, according to the Winter 2020 RV RoadSigns prepared by ITR Economics for the RV Industry Association.

The new projection sees total shipments ranging between 490,300 and 515,400 units with the most likely year-end total reaching 502,582 units by the end of next year, an 18.7 percent increase over 2020. Over the next two months, shipments are anticipated to finish within a range of 414,100 to 433,100 units with the most likely outcome being 423,638 units. That total would represent a 4.3 percent gain over the 406,700 units in 2019, overcoming a nearly two-month RV industry shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The RV industry is on track to break half a million RV shipments in 2021 for only the second time in our history,” said RV Industry Association President Craig Kirby. “The new forecast also shows that 2020 will be the fourth best year on record, surpassing 2019 by nearly 5 percent, despite the nearly two-month shutdown [last] spring.”

Towable RV shipments are expected to range between 442,200 and 465,200 units with a most likely outcome of 453,200 units in 2021, and 376,100 and 393,200 units with a most likely total of 384,600 in 2020.

Motorhome shipments are projected to range between 48,100 and 50,200 units with a most likely total of 49,200 units in 2021, and 38,100 and 39,900 units with a most likely outcome of 39,000 units in 2020.

SOURCE: RV Industry Association

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1 year ago

This is a little scary for several reasons beyond the lack of camp sites.

  1. It is difficult to find a reputable repair facility now; most have backups of 3-6 months!
  2. Many long-time campers (like us) are likely considering retiring from life on the road. I worry the for-sale market of disillusioned newbies will force us to practically give away our unit when that time comes. Motorized units are not practical for permanent sites, so the motorhome crowd could be the hardest hit.
  3. What will happen when the thousands of new entrants into RVing realize that the for-sale market is glutted, they are underwater on their loan, and the unit is just sitting and depreciating? Same thing that happened with home mortgages several years ago: just abandon, default, and move on? And who ends up paying for those defaults?
  4. And finally, what about campground owners who have been forced to add amenities to stay viable? Alternative uses for campgrounds?
Thomas D
1 year ago

I have a feeling that you are going to see a lot of rv’s for sale in the spring. Right now where we winter there 5 fivers on one street for sale. People are buying park models to live in

1 year ago

We rarely stay in commercial RV parks, given that our entire reason for buying a travel trailer was to get out in the boonies while still having some comfort. We did spend quite a bit of time in New Mexico’s State Parks, many of which have electricity and water at the campsite, but after the Governor shut them down last March (while we happened to be at one), and has never opened them back up for camping since, we’ve given up on them and will likely never go back. Living in the southwest, we are fortunate that we have lots of public lands available to us within short distances. We can be in nice, remote, little-used campsites in an hour from home. 5 gallon Water jugs, a portable transfer tank for the black and gray water, solar panels, and a generator round out our ability to keep the trailer on a site and bring convenience to it, rather than having to move the trailer to fill it up or empty it out. It works well for us.

Tommy Molnar
1 year ago

I still think most of the newly purchased units will end up in storage lots or side yards as folks find out RV’ing “ain’t their thing”.

Gordy B
1 year ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

They might be shipping, but selling is another ball game. I agree with you and also add more used units for sale and fewer new units sold due to rising gas prices.

Donald N Wright
1 year ago

Do any stock issuing corporations own campgrounds ?

1 year ago

Hoping RV manufacturing falls flat on its face. Increased production equates to more junk on the road. I think concentration on quality control needs to be instilled even if it has to be mandated.

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