In what could be viewed as a good sign for the towable segment of the RV industry, sales of the largest sport utility vehicle (SUV) models increased during June, despite sharply higher gas prices and interest rates.

Retail sales of the Chevrolet Tahoe increased 11.5%, to 13,240 units, and sales of the Ford Expedition increased an even 11%, to 21,361 units, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In comparison, sales of passenger cars were relatively flat during June. Sales of Chevrolet Suburbans also were relatively flat, increasing 0.3% to 11,450 units.

Meanwhile, Honda and Toyota also reported sharp increases in sales of certain minivans. Honda sold 12,223 Odyssey minivans, more than double the number it sold during June 1999, and Toyota sold 9,817 Sienna minivans, a 21.2% increase over a year-earlier.

Some of the highest gas prices were found in the Midwest during June and the Journal reported sales of big pickups and SUVs were negatively impacted in that region.

Strong sales of bigger pickups, SUVs and minivans are a positive for the towable segment because those vehicles have greater weight-pulling capacities than conventional passenger cars.