Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. intends to ramp up production at its complex in Riverside, Calif., in the next six weeks despite a somewhat sluggish RV market and electric power shortages in California.
Steve Hulst, general manager of Plant No. 47, said Fleetwood plans to add 150 people to its production staff — up from 500 — early this summer.
The labor force at Plant 47 will be expanded to produce more Terra and Fiesta entry-level Class A motorhomes that were introduced at last year’s national trade show in Louisville, said John Draheim, vice president of sales and marketing for the RV Group.
The first slideout-equipped Terra and Fiesta units will be produced at Plant 47, he said. Slideouts will come on 32-foot floorplan models.
The new employees also will help build Tioga and Jamboree Class C motorhomes, including the new “Q” floorplan units featuring storage space that is accessible from three sides, Draheim added.
Fleetwood will expand production at its headquarters location despite the fact it was forced to shut down production in California for six days in January because of interruptible power contracts with Southern California Edison, the area’s electric power provider.
Hulst predicted the plant will pay 60-70% more for electricity this year than last. “Part of that is because of the increase in production; the rest is because of rate increases.”
Fleetwood also builds Bounder, Pace Arrow and Storm gas engine Class A’s at Plant 47.