Several suppliers to the European RV industry are hoping to find customers in the U.S. RV industry.
The Europeans, who were interviewed during the recent Caravan Salon in Dusseldorf, Germany, feel the strong U.S. dollar, which makes their products appear to be relatively low-priced to American customers, provides them with an opportunity.
Among the European suppliers interested in cultivating business in the U.S. are Italy’s Tecnoform S.p.A., and Polyplastic of The Netherlands.
Tecnoform is a manufacturer of lacquered wood and furniture that supplies yacht and European RV builders.
Tecnoform’s specialty is art deco style wood cabinetry, paneling and furnishings, said Roberto Kerkoc, sales and marketing director.
It laminates oak, ash and occasionally woods from Africa or Indonesia, around a core of poly urethane, or other light-weight filler materials, to create a product that is one third the weight of solid wood, Kerkoc said.
Currently, Tecnoform supplies 58% of the European motorhome and towable RV market and its customers include major producers such as Germany’s Hymer AG.
Meanwhile, Polyplastic is a supplier of acrylic windows used on many European motorhomes and towable units. The acrylic windows weigh half as much as glass and the material can be curved, which gives RV builders more stylistic options, said Wim Suiker, sales manager.
The price of the acrylic material is comparable to “security glass,” although it is more expensive than “window glass,” Suiker said.
The only disadvantage to acrylic is it will scratch a little easier than
glass, he added.