Editor’s note: This is the sixth entry leading up to 2019’s Elkhart Open House. To read the last preview, click here. For the full Open House preview, be sure to check out the September 2019 issue of RV PRO.
REV Group and its six divisions will have plenty to highlight at this year’s Open House Week.
Don Gephart, marketing manager for the REV Recreation Group, says the RV maker will be releasing a new gas product in its Fleetwood and Holiday Rambler nameplates, which will fall between the Flair and Bounder in the Fleetwood line and within the Admiral and Vacationer products in the Holiday Rambler line.
Gephart kept specifics to a minimum in advance of Open House Week but says it will have two price points and 33- and 34-foot floorplans with numerous high-end features similar to Fleetwood RV’s Bounder unit. One of each floorplan will be on display.
Doug Miller, product manager for Fleetwood and Holiday Rambler Class A Diesel, says the new product is attuned for a specific market segment. “It’s designed and intended for customers who are stepping out of an entry-level product but can’t yet afford the price point of the Bounder or Vacationer. However, we’re making sure they have all the amenities and features they need to enjoy extended travel, including 22-inch wheels, multiplex wiring, stackable washer and dryer, and a floorplan with a large pantry,” he says.
There also will be new Pace Arrow floorplans, which were first introduced in the spring and just recently began shipping. The 33-foot model has a completely redesigned rear bedroom – sans bench seat – with a residential style and accouterments, including a wide-screen TV and linear fireplace.
Two additional new floorplans are the 35-foot RV and 35-foot S. The RV floorplan is the industry’s “first-designed” rear bunkhouse with a privacy aisle, according to Miller.
Dealers also can anticipate seeing the Flair, Admiral, Bounder, Vacationer and Southwind models on full display with updates for 2020. The Flair will sport new feature walls, decors and graphics. A new steering stabilizer will also be introduced for all Flairs and Admirals, Gephart says.
New features on Bounders and Vacationers include 100-watt solar panels as standard with a 265-watt option, collision mitigation, optional blind-spot mirrors, new feature walls, and new exteriors and interiors.
RV Group’s American Coach is readying for the unveiling of its new 2020 American Revolution RV, which had a soft introduction earlier this year at the 2019 Florida RV SuperShow. The 2020 American Revolution features a new HWH slide-out flush floor system, called the Freedom Floor, as well as two new floorplans, all of which will be on display, including a new exterior color graphic.
Also, on the runway of new, enhanced products will be the 2020 American Dream with a new front dash highlighted by two 10-inch monitors.
“In addition, we’ll also debut new 42-foot and 45-foot floorplans for the American Dream with a 20K hitch and 12.5 generator – it’s a very high-end system,” Gerke says, adding that further changes include new décor and painted wood rather than natural hardwood, a trend American Coach has adopted from the residential market.
Dealers can expect to see a refreshed American Eagle unit for 2020 (also featuring the Freedom Floor system along with the American Dream and American Revolution) that will retain its “high-end look” of its European-style cabinetry.
Renegade RV is making a splash at Elkhart Open House Week with the reintroduction of its Sprinter-based Vienna product, and will have its largest display ever, which will feature up to 15 units.
The exterior and interior have been restyled and there’s been a significant amount of new feature content added, including multiplex wiring.
“The cabinet styling is dramatically different, which is a feature that always stands out with Renegade and has been a building block to our success in the industry,” says Kevin Erdman, director of sales and marketing t for Renegade. While they remain solid, hardwood cabinets, Erdman says it will be “plainly evident” that the styling has changed. Dinette components also have been re-imagined, so that instead of a traditional and typical box and seat with cushions, they are now all furniture-designed.
The exterior also features new designs, from colors to graphics, as well as other amenities that he says the company is keeping tight-lipped on until closer to the show.
Renegade RV also will have two new Vienna floorplans on display with more to come in the near future that dealers will be able to preview. As the trend of shrinking floorplans continues with the Super C’s, consumers are driving Sprinter floorplan designs that add increased functionality, space and comfort in a compact package.
Renegade RV also will unveil new floorplans for other products, such as its Super C top volume-seller Valencia, which will have two news ones on tap for the show, one of which will be much shorter in length, and another for the top-volume seller Verona LE. Both products represent close to half of Renegade’s sales, according to Erdman.
Midwest Automotive Design
Midwest Automotive Design has reviewed and refined all of its product offerings for 2020, so they are more production and dealer friendly, from the ability to make them more serviceable to standardizing many features to make them easier to sell off the sales lots, according to Jake Stephenson, director of sales for Midwest Automotive Design.
“We spent a lot of time scrutinizing products we installed into the units, which resulted in Midwest now featuring Firefly Integrations for coach control – it’s the best operating system in the market,” Stephenson says. “We also upgraded to a 2,000-line inverter from the standard offering so the coach can handle additional electronics, such as gaming systems.”
Many former line items that were optional features are now standard. Midwest’s Sprinter vans are now equipped with stainless-steel appliances and fully framed screened slider doors with strong rigidity.
All Passage Sprinter RVs – Midwest’s top-selling product – now also feature a loft bed that encompasses the full rear end when it’s dropped down. It will be offered across all lengths of the Mercedes-Benz chassis platforms: 170 Extended, 170 and 144.
There will be eight van units on display.
“We’re going to have multiple new models, which will have many all-new features,” says Bob Rogers, director of marketing for Lance Camper, adding that Lance Camper will have nine units on-site: five travel trailers and four truck campers.
Lance recently detailed some of the enhancements.
Top-volume truck camper models for the brand are spearheaded by both its largest and shortest models, the 1172 and the 650, which are competing to be the No. 1-selling model in its lineup, he says, while the top-selling travel trailer model continues to be the 1985, closely followed by the 1475 and 2465, Lance Camper’s smallest and largest, respectively.
“Our sales, overall, are outpacing the market, and our backlog has certainly been reduced and our dealer inventories are up compared to last year. It’s a favorable market environment due to the Midwest’s spring and summer being so late, which leaves our dealers positioned to do well,” Rogers says. “We’re bucking the trend in sales, right now – certainly on our travel trailers – and with the introduction of new products at the Open House, we should continue on a good roll.”