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Despite reports that RV dealers, particularly motorhome dealers, were reluctant to order new product from manufacturers in March, the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) reported on April 29 that wholesale shipments of all types of RVs were up 3.3% last month.
Travel trailers led the group with a 20.2% increase in March, followed by Class A motorhomes, which were up 2.6%, and fifth-wheels, which climbed 1.8%.
There were 13,100 travel trailers shipped from manufacturers to dealers in March, compared with 10,900 units delivered in March 2002. During the first three months of this year, travel-trailer shipments increased 28.5% to 35,600 units, compared with 27,700 units delivered a year earlier.
Meanwhile, there were 3,900 Class A motorhomes delivered to dealers in March, compared with 3,800 units shipped in March 2002. In the first quarter, Class A shipments increased 5.3% to 10,000 units, versus 9,500 units delivered a year earlier.
In the case of fifth-wheels, there were 5,600 units delivered in March, compared with 5,500 units shipped a year earlier. However, in the first quarter, fifth-wheel shipments declined 0.7% to 15,000 units, compared with 15,100 units delivered a year earlier.
Shipments of all other types of RVs either were flat or down in March, according to the RVIA.
Here is how the other product categories performed:
• Folding-camper shipments plunged 27.9% in March to 3,100 units, compared with 4,300 units delivered a year earlier. In the first quarter, folding-camper deliveries declined 21.2% to 8,900 units, versus 11,300 units shipped a year earlier.
• There were 1,500 Class C motorhomes shipped in March, the same number as in March 2002. In the first quarter, Class C deliveries increased 5.1% to 4,100 units, compared with 3,900 units shipped a year earlier.
• Truck-camper shipments fell 30% in March 700 units, compared with 1,000 units delivered a year earlier. In the first quarter, truck-camper deliveries declined 19.2% to 2,100 units, compared with 2,600 units shipped a year earlier.
• There were 200 Class B motorhomes shipped in March, the same number delivered a year earlier. In the first quarter, Class B deliveries declined 14.3% to 600 units, compared with 700 units shipped a year earlier.