Thor Industries Inc. subsidiary Dutchmen Manufacturing Inc. has leased an additional 60,000 square feet of manufacturing space in Syracuse, Ind., to increase output of its Aerolite and Skamper brands of ultralightweight travel trailers and fifth-wheels.
“Dealer response to our new 2003 products has been tremendous,” said Dutchmen President Rich Florea. “Aerolite and Skamper have experienced an increase of 73% in dealer orders and we expect the demand to remain high into next year.
“The new building will be used for final finish for the ultralightweight products and will allow us to increase production of our Cub and Kodiak expandable products as well as our new Aerostar and Skamper Ultra products,” Florea said.
New features and floorplans are the reasons for the greater demand for 2003 Aerolite and Skamper models, according to Kate Crane, product manager.
“We have emphasized new storage concepts in our 2003 models,” Crane said. “Our innovative ‘Store-Mor’ cargo area is a first for this product category. It was very well received by our dealers at our annual open house and the Harrisburg show.”
The additional space also will allow Dutchmen to “expand on our dedication to quality built products,” Florea said. “Plant Manager Mark Smith and Quality Director Bob Ries have implemented a Zero Defect quality control process to assure our dealers that they are purchasing the best-designed and best-built product in the ultralightweight category.”
Dutchmen will hire 100 more employees over the next six months to staff the new facility, said company spokesman Joe Hosinski.
Ultralightweight towables are approximately the same size as standard travel trailers and fifth-wheels but they are light enough to be pulled by SUVs, light trucks and minivans.
In addition to Aerolite and Skamper, Dutchmen’s other brands are Dutchmen, Colorado and Four Winds towables.