Despite early reports of declining wholesale shipments and retail demand, the overall outlook for the RV industry remains solid, positioning the industry for yet another banner year in 2019.
That’s the word from Frank Hugelmeyer, president of the RV Industry Association, who spoke on the state of the RV industry during the 7th Annual RV Industry Power Breakfast held last week at the Northern Indiana Events Center, part of the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart.
This story by John Kline originally appeared in Goshen News.
According to Hugelmeyer, while it’s true that first quarter RV shipments were down by just more than 27% compared to the same time period in 2018, that information has to be prefaced with the understanding that the industry realized an unprecedented amount of growth over the past three years. As such, even with the reported declines, the industry is still looking at what very well could be a top-five sales and production year.
“We’re way over the 20-year average of 331,000 units shipment average each year,” said Hugelmeyer.
He noted that the RVIA is currently in the process of finalizing its most recent RV-specific economic analysis and projection report, with numbers set to be released in June.
“And you have to realize, I’ve seen some of the early numbers, and our growth from the last time we did this before, is at 40 percent, 50 percent,” Hugelmeyer said of the report. “When you look at labor, when you look at our contribution to the economy and job creation in the country, that’s outstanding results. We’ve been a large part of driving this economic recovery over the last several years, and certainly in the last five. And you’re seeing the numbers both in our sales, as well as we’re going to see them in our economic news.”