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Retail sales of towable recreational vehicles in May totaled 15,748, a 35.1% decline from May 2008, Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI) reported on Monday (July 20).

The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based firm reported declines across the board. By segment, sales totals and percentage declines from May 2008 were as follows:

  • Travel trailers, 10,120, off 33%.
  • Fifth-wheels, 3,959, down 38.9%.
  • Folding camping trailers, 1,491, a decline of 34.7%.
  • Park models, 178, off 57.1%.

Within the context of 2009, two of the four product segments showed a month-to-month growth for the year.

  • Travel trailer sales rose by 159 units over April.
  • Fifth-wheel sales declined by 211 units from April.
  • Folding camping trailer sales improved by 124 units from April.
  • Park model sales declined by 35 units since April.

For all RV sales, Thor Industries Inc. retained its hold on the No. 1 spot with a 28.2% market share, followed by Forest River Inc. with a 17.7% share and Jayco Inc. with a 13.7% share.

By product segment, Thor was first in travel trailers, fifth-wheels and park models. The Coleman brand produced by FTCA Inc. was tops in camping trailer sales.

SSI noted, “The month of May Recreational Vehicle National Summary is complete and reflects some updates to previous months and years. The updates represent a combination of delayed registrations and modifications to our un-coded file and model cleanup. The state of Utah has experienced some computer problems and is not complete for the month. We will place the data into the correct month once the data is received.”