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Old 11-15-2006, 10:33 AM   #1
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Sad but true...

Story 1
Story 2
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Old 11-15-2006, 10:33 AM   #2
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Sad but true...

Story 1
Story 2
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:40 PM   #3
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That is sad...
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:59 PM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">We regret to inform you that as a result of the shutdown, Sunline will no longer exist as a going concern to satisfy any warranty claims."
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The real losers are those folks who've recently plunked down their hard earned money on a Sunline product and now are on their own if they should have a problem that would have been warranted. I doubt their dealers will want to shoulder much of these expenses without recourse to the OEM.
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Old 11-16-2006, 03:56 AM   #5
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I don't know what to believe. Here is what was reported on our local TV station on Tuesday:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">DENVER, Pa. -- An RV manufacturer in Denver, Lancaster County, is laying off workers, but management says the situation is temporary.

Company officials at Sunline Coach Co. said an industry wide slow down, coupled with high gas prices has forced them to cut back. About 150 employees at the Denver plant are being temporarily let go.

"I didn't find out until Monday that they'd really be laying off," said one employee.


Officials have stressed that the closure is temporary. They hope to reopen the plant at the first of the year. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

So, what is the real story?

I do know that when we were shopping for a new trailer this past spring that I looked at Sunline first. Their product line was very limited and they no longer made fifth wheels. Ya know, if you don't make a product that people want, you can't stay in business.
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Old 11-17-2006, 05:51 AM   #6
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They only had about 180 employees, so if they let 150 of them go it's a pretty ominous sign.
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Old 11-18-2006, 02:38 AM   #7
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Here's a paraphrased quote from a CEO of another trailer manufacturer discussing Sunline's demise:

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">If you poll Sunline's customers you will find nothing but happy customers. Many potential customers will not understand why such a great lightweight travel trailer product could not make it financially. Especially in today's market environment. Their demise wasn't due to a lack of commitment or passion or management talent or product design.

It wasn't the retail customer that "killed" Sunline; it was the RV dealer. It was insufficient volume and an inability to sell at a price that gave the dealer enough gross profit to pay the bills. Customers can only buy, if the product is there to view and be sold to them. Sunline wasn't getting enough "shelf space" on the lots and like other smaller manufacturers cannot attract the attention of dealers, who are so "wrapped up" in the "shiny and bargain priced" mass produced
products coming from Elkhart.

Dealers are able to present these products in such a way, that the majority of customers are convinced, that they are worth more than they really are. Thus the dealer makes a nice profit when he sells one. Subsequently, dealers are "loading up" on these products and reducing their commitment to the "old name" brands, which have always been committed to above
average design, quality and service. I guess one has to accept this as capitalism at work; perhaps it's a value system gone astray.

The top eight most respected towable manufacturers are all losing market share. There will likely be other casualties in the near future. Most people will not understand what happened to their favorite RV manufacturer. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 11-18-2006, 03:30 AM   #8
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That is so true!

And the quality manufacturers that do stay in business will have to raise the cost even more and risk perhaps pricing themselves out of the market (Chinook) or go to factory direct only like LazyDaze



<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Hitchhiker:
Here's a paraphrased quote from a CEO of another trailer manufacturer discussing Sunline's demise:

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">If you poll Sunline's customers you will find nothing but happy customers. Many potential customers will not understand why such a great lightweight travel trailer product could not make it financially. Especially in today's market environment. Their demise wasn't due to a lack of commitment or passion or management talent or product design.

It wasn't the retail customer that "killed" Sunline; it was the RV dealer. It was insufficient volume and an inability to sell at a price that gave the dealer enough gross profit to pay the bills. Customers can only buy, if the product is there to view and be sold to them. Sunline wasn't getting enough "shelf space" on the lots and like other smaller manufacturers cannot attract the attention of dealers, who are so "wrapped up" in the "shiny and bargain priced" mass produced
products coming from Elkhart.

Dealers are able to present these products in such a way, that the majority of customers are convinced, that they are worth more than they really are. Thus the dealer makes a nice profit when he sells one. Subsequently, dealers are "loading up" on these products and reducing their commitment to the "old name" brands, which have always been committed to above
average design, quality and service. I guess one has to accept this as capitalism at work; perhaps it's a value system gone astray.

The top eight most respected towable manufacturers are all losing market share. There will likely be other casualties in the near future. Most people will not understand what happened to their favorite RV manufacturer. </div></BLOCKQUOTE> </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 11-18-2006, 05:10 PM   #9
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As I have been reading as much information as I can get my eyes on these past few days I find myself on a roller coaster ride of emotion. Why you might ask? Well... we own a Sunline, ours is a model T2499, which was a VERY popular model for couples of all ages. It is full of quality features in a very well built rig, and all put together in a nice floorplan. At 25 feet it fits our needs perfectly since we are essentially campers and prefer to stay in COE or state parks.

I find myself relieved that we bought our Sunline before they went out of business, yet I feel just a tiny bit cheated since we have a few months left on our three year warranty....not that we needed the warranty very much, just once. That one time only served to re-enforce the type of quality customer service Sunline provides their owners. We live in an area where there are no stocking dealers but they made sure the RV repair facility received the parts they needed to repair our TT via Fed Ex the day after the service manager called to confirm what they needed...... There were other times when we had to call Sunline to ask a question or to get a part that broke due to wear and tear. The only part we ever paid for was a cover for the vent that was damaged in a storm and then they didn't charge us any freight to ship it to us. Other times what I spoke with the parts manager about was just sent to us...sure they were small pieces like the brackets that hold the bottom of the mini blinds but hey it's the little things that mean a lot to a customer.

When a company such as Sunline closes the doors it is a sad day for the owners but it is also a sad day for the RV industry. There are just not enough manufacturers who have the good reputation for quality both in their RV's and in the people they employ. Sadly it is not an industry standard....

I wish the former employees all the best and hope they can find gainful employment quickly. This is a lousy time of year to be laid off.... So yes, we have been riding a roller coaster of emotion and partly it is because we know there are some fine folks in & around Denver, PA who need a job....many of them have been working for Sunline for 30 or more years.

We'll keep camping in our Sunline and enjoying all the benefits of owning it... heck maybe we own a collector's item. LOL Actually I hope not, in my heart I hope they find a way to either reorganize or sell to a company that will allow them to continue to build quality as well as keep their customers happy.
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Old 11-21-2006, 09:32 AM   #10
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Very well put...
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