Consistent with its outlook for a market turnaround this year, Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC is reporting solid sales and a rebound in consumer interest during the early round of consumer shows, according to a news release.
“It started at the Tampa Show (Florida RV SuperShow) where we saw very steady traffic and more actual buyers than last year,” said Coley Brady, director of fifth-wheel sales for the Elkhart, Ind.-based manufacturer. “Our dealers have been moving our product, and they are reporting that our lines are resonating with consumers. We continue to be very encouraged about Heartland’s prospects in 2010.”
Brady said that shows in San Antonio, Texas, and Kansas City, Mo., were particularly strong, eclipsing last year’s totals and further padding the company’s order backlog with its dealer body.
“The Tampa Super Show event was really successful,” Brady said. “We were up significantly from last year and our dealers were very enthused with the show results.
“Overall, we are pleased with the early battery of shows. That said, it is still a very competitive environment, which makes it even more important that we stay ahead of the curve with innovative features and design, along with pricing that fits into peoples’ budgets.”
Heartland rolled out five new brands at last year’s National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky., including several new travel trailer offerings to complement its full line of fifth-wheels. Brad Whitehead, director of travel trailer sales, said the new brands were a hit with consumers and the company is anticipating market share growth in the travel trailer sector this year.
“Our new travel trailer models are filling gaps in our lineup with products that target some of the fastest-growing sectors in the marketplace,” Whitehead said. “Judging from the early shows, we are carving out our niche in these very competitive areas of the market.”
Tim Hoffman, vice president of sales, feels that the success in the early shows leaves Heartland well positioned for the upcoming spring selling season and on through the end of the year.
“We have a flexible assembly model so that we will keep step with demand,” said Hoffman. “Our long-term plan has always been to grow in a thoughtful, disciplined manner so that our dealers will always be taken care of. That plan is still very much in place as we move through what will be our best year ever.”