Report: Motorhome Sales Gained 6% in Q4
Editor's Note: Last week, Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI) released December and year-end retail sales figures (registrations) for the nation's RV dealers who sell motorized RVs. Following that report, the investment firm Robert W. Baird & Co. issued a client newsletter commenting on the sales figures. Excerpts from that newsletter follow.
U.S. Motorhome retail up 2% in December. According to data from Statistical Surveys, motorhome (Class A & C) industry retail grew 2% in December — slowing from prior months as comparisons became more difficult. Class A sales grew 5%, while Class C retail decreased 4%. U.S. motorhome retail demand increased 7% in 2012. Thor demand grew 26% through the first two months of its January quarter. Winnebago demand grew 9% in December, the first month of its fiscal Q2.
Motorhome retail registrations in the U.S. grew 2% in December. Class A registrations grew 5% while Class C registrations decreased 4%. Comparisons became more difficult in November and will remain difficult through February. The data indicate U.S. motorhome retail grew 6% in the fourth quarter and increased 7% for the full year. Our January survey of U.S. and Canadian RV dealers indicated motorhome demand improved 2-4% in October-December.
Solid QTD results for Thor. Thor U.S. motorhome (A & C) retail grew 32% in December, which represents the second month of Thor's fiscal Q2. Thor U.S. retail demand grew 26% in the first two months of the January quarter. We model Thor North American motorhome retail growth at 15% for the quarter. The company reported preliminary revenue and backlog for the January quarter on Feb. 4. SSI data indicate Thor maintained its U.S. motorhome market share at 20.0% in 2012.
Winnebago. Winnebago U.S. motorhome retail grew 9% in December, which represents the first month of its fiscal Q2. We model Winnebago North American retail growth at 25% for the February quarter. SSI data indicate that Winnebago's 2012 U.S. motorhome market share grew 1.6pp to 20.6%.