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Winnebago Industries Inc. raised wholesale prices on its 2005 model year units 1.5% to 3% to offset “inflationary” increases in its costs for labor and materials and to account for new product features, said Ed Barker, the company’s senior vice president and CFO.
Winnebago’s 2005 models are being shipped to dealers now, he added.
Barker revealed the price increases during a conference call with investment analysts last Thursday (June 17).
Additionally, Winnebago passes on to its dealers increases in the cost of chassis when they occur, Barker said.
The higher cost for chassis have already been included in prices of “some of the diesel product” that Winnebago currently is shipping to its dealers, Barker said.
He added that he anticipates increases in chassis prices from Winnebago’s other suppliers will occur in the late summer to early fall time frame. Barker estimates the cost of those chassis will increase from $150 to $400 per chassis.
“We aren’t participating in any big discount programs,” added Bruce Hertzke, Winnebago’s chairman, president and CEO, who also participated in the conference call. “That doesn’t mean we won’t have a show special but, the bottom line is, we believe we gained this market share without utilizing discounts. We expect our products to sell themselves.”
Winnebago had a 13% share of the retail market for diesel engine Class A’s during the first four months of this year, compared with 8.5% during the same portion of 2003, Hertzke said.
The company’s diesel Class A shipments also increased 127% during its third fiscal quarter, which ended May 29.
Winnebago’s share of the combined Class A/Class C motorhome retail market also increased to 18.5% during the first four months of this year, compared with 18.3% during the same portion of last year, Hertzke added.
Winnebago is the leading motorhome producer when retail sales of Class A’s, both gas and diesel, and Class C’s are combined, according to Statistical Surveys Inc., an independent market research firm.
Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. was No. 2 in the combined Class A/Class C market with a 17.8% share of the retail market during the first four months of this year, Statistical Surveys also reported.