Less than a year after acquiring Canadian Class B motorhome builder Roadtrek Motorhomes Inc. and announcing its intentions to expand into the North American RV market, Erwin Hymer Group North America Inc. (EHGNA) is making its presence felt in the U.S. and Canadian B-van arena with an array of new Roadtrek and Hymer-branded lines.
In fact, EHGNA was the top Class B motorhome retailer in the last quarter of 2016, reports Mike Snell, vice president of sales and service for the Kitchener, Ontario-based firm.
”We’re reclaiming what Roadtrek was in the past,” said Snell, a former Monaco Coach Corp. executive who has recently helped launch a flurry of new downsize motorized offerings. That includes two affordable, Ram ProMaster-based entries tailored for singles and couples — the 2017 Roadtrek Simplicity SRT and Hymer Sonne.
Also new from EHGNA, an offshoot of Erwin Hymer Group, Europe’s largest RV builder, is the Aktiv 2.0., an extended version of the company’s Aktiv B-van assembled on a ProMaster van with a larger bed and optional rear power sofa.
While EHGNA was the nation’s leading Class B retailer during the October-December quarter for having sold 245 units, a 17% increase over 2015’s last quarter, Winnebago Industries Inc. was 2016’s overall leader in Class B motorhomes – an emerging market that last year accounted for 3,487 retailed units, 14.8% more than 2015, according to Statistical Surveys Inc.
For all of 2016, Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago held a 31.4% Class B market share followed closely by EHGNA, with 30.9%, and Thor Industries Inc., Elkhart, Ind., with an 18.3% share, SSI confirmed. And Snell, for his part, tells RVBusiness that he’s intent on expanding Hymer’s Class B market presence in 2017.
”We plan to keep that No. 1 (position) and grow the Class B segment,” said Snell, whose company recently purchased a 200,000-square-foot-plus Kitchener plant to house another Class B line as well as production of its new-to-the-States lineup of small Hymer Touring travel trailers in lengths of 16 to 18 feet and weights of 1,400 to 2,300 pounds.