Heartland RV logoElkhart, Ind.-based Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC is considering its options to expand manufacturing operations to the West Coast.

According to the fifth-wheel and travel trailer builder, the potential move comes in response to growing market share for Heartland in the competitive West Coast market, according to a news release.

“Heartland has elected to move up the timetable on a planned West Coast expansion due to increased market share, particularly in the Western region, and the continued support from our Canadian and U.S. dealers in that area,” said Tim Hoffman, vice president of sales.

Hoffman noted that the benefits from the move would be two-fold for its dealer body: lower shipping costs and improved delivery time.

“Such an expansion, should it occur, would enable Heartland to better service our dealers in terms of on-time delivery,” Hoffman said. “Heartland has always maintained a four- to six-week delivery time, which is one of the best in the industry, but being in closer proximity to our dealers will give them even quicker response.”

Hoffman said that Idaho, Oregon and Washington would be “the areas of focus” in beginning the process of expanding into the West Coast market by the middle of next year.

The news comes on the heels of last week’s announcement that Heartland would be adding 400 production workers to its Elkhart operations by the end of the first quarter in 2010, raising its total to 1,200 employees.

“With the market coming back, and Heartland well-positioned to continue to gain market share, we are taking the appropriate steps to make sure our dealers are taken care of,” Hoffman said.