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Monaco Coach Corp. is strongly considering adding more Beaver and Safari gas engine models once it completes the acquisition of SMC Corp. later this month.

“It will be our intention to solidify SMC’s position in the diesel market with the intention of then introducing new models at additional price points, including the possibility of additional gas powered models under each (Beaver and Safari) brand name,” said President John Nepute.

“That way, Safari and Beaver owners will have the same opportunities as Monaco and Holiday Rambler owners have to get in at a lower price and then trade-up through the family of products using our stepping stone marketing approach,” Nepute added.

Gas engine units accounted for only 10% of SMC’s output, so Nepute said the acquisition “reinforces our (Monaco’s) commitment to the diesel market.”

The diesel segment grew to account for 45% of all Class A motorhome sales during the first quarter of this year, and the SMC acquisition would give Monaco 36% of the diesel market, Nepute added.

One of Monaco Chairman Kay Toolson’s goals is for Monaco to become a bigger player in the gas engine segment. And Monaco certainly has the plant capacity to do so.

Last week, Toolson said Monaco’s headquarters plant in Coburg, Ore., will be operating at only half capacity after production of Safari models is moved to Coburg from SMC’s nearby plant in Harrisburg, Ore.