Buoyed by a nearly 19% jump in travel trailer deliveries, August wholesale shipments increased 3.7% with 33,600 units delivered compared with 32,400 last year.
Travel trailers were the only product category, besides van campers, to gain on 2004 for the month. According to data from the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), 17,100 trailers were shipped in August, up from 14,400 a year ago.
Cumulative totals for the first eight months showed an 8.6% increase in travel trailer shipments with 124,400 units delivered versus 114,600 in the year prior.
The numbers did not reflect the full impact of trailers used for victims of Hurricane Katrina, which slammed into the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29. RVIA indicated subsequent shipment reports would include travel trailers sold to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for relief efforts.
Motorized shipments were down 10% for August and lagged 13.1% behind last year’s pace for the first eight months. Class A motorhomes were down 13.2% for the month with 3,300 units shipped compared with 3,800 last year. Year-to-date, 26,600 Class A’s were delivered versus 31,600 in 2004.
Other highlights include:
• Overall shipments through August were flat, down just 0.6% to 259,500 units compared with 261,000 in 2004.
• August fifth-wheel deliveries dropped 3.7% to 7,900 units from 8,200 a year ago. Through August, fifth-wheel shipments were down 4.6% with 60,800 units delivered.
• Class C motorhome shipments fell 10% in August to 1,800 units from 2,000 last year. The sector was also down 10% year-to-date with 15,300 units shipped compared with 17,000 the previous year.
• Overall motorhome deliveries fell to 5,400 units in August from 6,000 last year. For the year, motorhome deliveries totaled 43,700 compared with 50,300 in 2004.
• Overall towable shipments were up 6.8% in August with 28,200 units delivered from 26,400 in 2004. Year-to-date totals reflected a 2.4% improvement over last year with 215,800 units shipped from 210,700.
• Folding camping trailers were down 500 units for the month and 5.1% year-to-date while truck campers gained 100 units in August and declined 7.4% for the first eight months with 6,300 units shipped. Van campers also were up 100 units for the month and increased the same amount through August with 1,800 units delivered.