RV Industry Tanks (So to Speak)
While talking heads like John McCain bob and wobble about the state of our economy, for the RV industry there is no doubt. It's recession time. Forest City, Iowa's famous Winnebego has seen their earnings fall by 67 percent this past quarter, after ten years of straight growth. The obvious reason not to buy a giant motor home: gas prices. As we saw yesterday, prices everywhere are up, up, up. Especially diesel. What kind of mileage does a typical RV get? Gas-powered homes-on-wheels manage about five mpg, whereas the diesel rigs average nine mpg. More troubling though, is the prospect that people aren't buying RVs because they can no longer afford big-ticket items. Especially as the typical RV owner is in the sweet-spot of the disposable income range: empty nest, soon to be retired boomers, aged 55 – 60. I mean, if not them, who? Cutting back on land yacht road trips because of a temporary spike in fuel prices is one thing. Not buying the behemoths in the first place is another. (As is buying your dream RV and then having a bank repossess it.) Bottom line: RVs might just be gigantic dead canaries in a very toxic coal mine.
Cleanup driver for Team Black Metal V8olvo.
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