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Old 02-18-2013, 01:49 PM   #1
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Looks like the economy isnt doing that bad.

Ford Boosts Chassis, Engine Production Capacity to Meet Rising Demand for Motorhomes

Feb-18-2013 6:55 AM ET

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​DEARBORN – Ford, America’s best-selling motorhome chassis manufacturer, is increasing production capacity by approximately 35 percent to meet renewed recreational vehicle demand in the United States.

At the same time, Ford is increasing production capacity of its 6.8-liter V10 engine that powers its motorhome chassis lineup.

“We’re pleased that while other chassis manufacturers have left this segment, Ford continues its commitment to the RV upfitter industry,” said Ken Czubay, vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. “We’re increasing our participation in this industry as motorhome customers return to the market.”

The Ford F-53 motorhome and F-59 commercial chassis are built by Ford’s partner at Detroit Chassis at its state-of-the-art facility in Detroit. The 6.8-liter V10 gasoline engine is built in Canada at Ford’s Windsor Engine Plant in Ontario.

Class A motorhomes are recreational vehicles built on a stripped truck chassis where the driver’s area is part of the living area. Ford supplies parts such as the frame rails, suspension, powertrain and steering components to Detroit Chassis for assembly into motorhome chassis for customers like Winnebago, Thor and Fleetwood.

Shipments of Class A motorhomes were up 14 percent in 2012 but growth rose dramatically as the year closed, according to the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). Sales accelerated to 33 percent in December and 43 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012, according to the RVIA.

Ford F-53 chassis registrations reached their highest levels in 2012 since 2007.

Motorhome chassis aren’t the only Ford products seeing increased demand. Production capacity of the company’s segment-exclusive 6.8-liter V10 gasoline engine that powers the F-53 will increase 25 percent by 2014 at Windsor Engine Plant to meet strong demand from commercial customers. The 6.8-liter V10 is also used in E-Series vans, F-Series Super Duty chassis cabs and the F-650 medium-duty truck.

Ford offers the best-selling RV chassis in both the Class A and Class C (E-Series chassis) markets. The F-53 Class A lineup includes six offerings ranging from the “tailgater’s special” 16,000-pound GVWR chassis through the capability leader 26,000-pound GVWR chassis, which gives motorhome builders the opportunity to offer the most advanced, most luxurious RV bodies yet. Prices for Class A motorhomes can exceed $150,000.
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:23 PM   #2
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Been noticing how the " newcomers" are introducing themselves on the boards. Seems like a large uptick in the last 6+ months. Things appear to be getting better, from that metric at least. A trend?
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:41 PM   #3
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More anecdotal evidence. Saturday evening - went out to dinner. Several restaurants within a 3 mile run. Went from parking lot to parking lot looking for a place to park. Was open to what - but folks were standing outside everywhere and no parking. Finally - someone pulling out as we came around the corner. Not sure if the 3 cars behind us ever found a space. We thought we got the jump on dinner at 6:30 pm. Plano Texas must be doing ok. At least by restaurant standards.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:07 PM   #4
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I'm not not saying that our economy is not doing better, what I am saying is three things. One the news media has stopped the nay saying of "in this down economy" and like statements allowing us, the public to form our own opinions.
The second is that we have made our decision as to what is important to us.
And three I believe that the RV community also has come to realise that these forums are full of great people and information.
JMHO
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:15 PM   #5
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Great to see the RV industry in recovery and, hopefully, our economy in general. However, we must be realistic. Gasoline is on the rise again and fuel prices do affect the RV industry. Higher fuel prices may alter existing owners' travel habits but may also deter potential new buyers.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:20 PM   #6
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Every where I go, people are eating, drinking, buying, interest rates have never been lower, atleast in my life time. Help wanted in many places, what does that tell you about the economy.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:55 PM   #7
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Eventually people get sick of austerity and eventually start spending again. Some of what we are seeing is pent up demand - you see it in autos - the average age of existing cars has been climbing, so the replacement of those cars is finally starting. But even when people spend, they are still looking for value. I like to think that with the tough economy for the last four years, people are certainly more value conscious and the new normal is to be very careful spending your money. I find it interesting, that even people I know who are by all accounts wealthy, are still fairly frugal.

With RV's, you definitely are seeing alittle growth - but the trend is definitely downmarket with big increases in towables and gas rigs. The big diesel luxury coaches are probably never coming back to their past levels. They'll still be around, but definitely the economy/entry level models are where the money is.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:58 PM   #8
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Think people have given up on saving for when ya old. Spend now, have fun.
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:10 PM   #9
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The marine/boating market is still hurting. We shut down and liquidated everything. We built semi-custom and custom cruisers and fishing boats.
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:19 PM   #10
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I'm sure glad we don't have any inflation yet. Yeh, right.
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:46 PM   #11
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I'm 40 and honestly I don't believe I will be able to retire, or send my children to college for that matter. Not because I don't work hard or save money, because it costs so much to live and it increases 2-3 times what my salary does. So I'n not sweating the future for now it looks like i have 40 or so years to plan.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smlranger View Post
Great to see the RV industry in recovery and, hopefully, our economy in general. However, we must be realistic. Gasoline is on the rise again and fuel prices do affect the RV industry. Higher fuel prices may alter existing owners' travel habits but may also deter potential new buyers.
And so is diesel, so look for higher food and fuel prices yet since the cost of transportation is included and causes the prices of almost everything to go up.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed S View Post
Think people have given up on saving for when ya old. Spend now, have fun.
I "retired" in 1998 with 60% of my working wage, have pretty much been working since though, waiting for my wife to retire. Now she's 65 and could retire except her daughter died over 4 years ago and the youngest is still with us and going to school. Since he's 13 now I'm not sure when we can retire and go full time as per our original plans. Can we afford to retire? YES!! Do we want to? Well, waiting to see how Obama care turns out, and figure what to do with the 13 year old. His father is a jailbird and last time we tried to serve papers on him was on the run for other illegal activities. Basically, we're the only family he has left.
Also, she luckily had great short term care insurance that paid her wages and almost all hospital bills since late Sept. The hosp/medical costs for just the one illness were over $120,000
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Old 02-18-2013, 09:50 PM   #14
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There is no competition, Ford is the only supplier for the Class A gas chassis.

No wonder they are doing good.
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