Capital Talk: Heartland RV on a Roll as Sales Soar

Capital Talk: Heartland RV on a Roll as Sales Soar

September 20, 2017 by 

RVBusiness Publisher Sherman Goldenberg visits Heartland RV’s display at the Elkhart RV Open House to interview Coley Brady, vice president of sales and marketing, and A.J. Jones, senior general manager of five towable brands, focusing on the company’s growth and its customer quality initiative. To view the video click here or scroll to the right side of the RVBUSINESS.com home page.

Heartland to Launch ‘3-Year Structural Warranty’

Heartland to Launch ‘3-Year Structural Warranty’

By RV BUSINESS NEWS

September 19, 2017

In line with a strategic initiative to improve overall quality and streamline customer service, Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC announced today (Sept. 18) the launch of a 3-year limited structural warranty. The program goes into effect covering new manufactured units on Nov. 1.

The move comes on the heels of Heartland’s multi-pronged expansion project in January at its Elkhart, Ind., headquarters and Cruiser RV/DRV Luxury Suites division in nearby Howe that added more than 500,000 square feet of manufacturing space and included a dedicated facility to pre-delivery inspection (PDI).

“The three-year limited structural warranty is an extension of Heartland’s focus on quality,” said President Chris Hermon in a press release. “Since opening the PDI center we have performed comprehensive testing on over half the units produced by Heartland. Because of that focus we are comfortable and confident on adopting the 3-year structural warranty. It serves as confirmation that we are listening to our customers and are intent on improving their overall experience.”……

To read the rest of the article, click HERE

Heartland RV’s Posts Own Blog

As Heartland RV Owners, you’ve probably come to know that Heartland isn’t only about manufacturing 5th wheels and travel trailers.  Heartland RV’s is “about the people” which puts them as one of the top dogs in the RV towables industry respectfully.  Their mantra of keeping Heartland Owners interested in RVing or inviting prospective Heartland Owners for an inside look at the Heartland family is what keeps them on top.

Heartland RV Corporate has stretched their outreach boundries through Social Media avenues.  On Heartland RV’s webpage, you’ll find dealer locators, history of, testimonials, product videos, information about each brand, owner contributed images, product manuals and yes, even information about the Heartland Owners Club and the Heartland Owners Forums.

Recently, Heartland RV’s has taken social media by storm with their blog; highlighting three full-time Heartland Owners who share their RV’ing experiences, maintenance tips, recipes, and stories.  They will take you into every facet of RV’ing; whether it be in their galleys cooking meals, sharing product reviews or in the cargo bays improving or improvising with repairs.  Heartland’s Social Media Department coordinates scheduled blog postings so it’s advantageous to visit their page regularly.  There’s a comment section at the bottom of each blog posting as well as Facebook  ‘share’ buttons referencing on your own pages.

So, if you’ve not been yet to any of their pages, you’re missing out!  You can also become part of the community and ‘get connected’ on their My Heartland page.  Also worth noting, Heartland RV’s has their own Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter pages, so visit and like or follow their pages.  Stay tuned and stay in touch!

For more information, please follow and bookmark their links:

Webpage:  Heartland RV’s

Facebook:  Heartland RV’s

YouTube:  Heartland RV’s

Pinterest:  Heartland RV’s

Twitter:   Heartland RV’s

Written by: Lisa Brown, Heartland Owners Club Blog Editor

BLOGSPOT: Local economy is extraordinary

BLOGSPOT: Local economy is extraordinary

  • By ROGER SCHNEIDER City/business editor of Goshen News

Article

It’s been a wild ride for Elkhart County workers since The Great Recession.

Back then I was watching the monthly recreational vehicle stats and noticed a dip in shipment growth in 2006 and a 9 percent downturn in 2007. But the dip didn’t seem to indicate the trouble to come.

Then the banking crisis dropped from the sky in 2008 and fell heavily on the industry.

Our news staff covered the depressing weekly layoffs at local factories that produced recreational vehicles and supplies for that industry. The banking crisis dried up credit. And the few consumers who had cash on hand were reluctant to spend it on luxury items, including RVs. Consumers who wanted to borrow money for a new travel trailer or motorhome found banks had tightened loan qualification standards.

RV shipments fell 32.9 percent in 2008 and then dropped another 30.1 percent in 2009.

As a result of those dips, unemployment rocketed here. By March 2009 the jobless rate in the Elkhart-Goshen Metropolitan Statistical Area topped out at 18.9 percent.

But things have changed drastically for the better. The good times have returned and the RV industry is super hot.

In February the local unemployment rate was 3.3 percent. “Help wanted” and “hiring now” signs are prevalent in storefronts and along the roads in industrial parks.

During the past few months I have marveled at how far the local economy has come since The Great Recession.

Last week I drove up to Bristol’s new Universal Trailer Corp. factory. While taking the plant tour I marveled at the combination of automation and human skills to produce the company’s cargo trailers. While robotic welders were in use, the machines still had to be fed by hand and human welders were busy joining steel that the robots could not reach.

The company has hired 50 people so far and will be adding more workers as shifts are added.

Genesis Products broke ground March 22 on a 200,000-square-foot facility in the Goshen Industrial Park. The company’s laminated panels are mostly used in the RV industry.

One of the most significant developments in Goshen in recent years may be the one offered by Greg Hoogenboom. Back in January, Hoogenboom’s development company, Hoogenboom-Nofziger, started construction on a 20,000-square-foot industrial building. As far as anyone could recall back then, it was the first local industrial building to be erected on speculation in many years. The building is intended to get the ball rolling on filling up the company’s 10-lot industrial park, Waterford Commons Business Park.

Also in January, Forest River, a maker of recreational vehicles, said it would create 425 jobs this year and in 2018 by opening four new plants in LaGrange.

Thor Industries’ Heartland subsidiary is also expanding this year. The company is adding production space to build more travel trailers, fifth wheels and toy haulers at its Elkhart, Middlebury, Howe and Nampa, Idaho campuses.

Last year Thor expanded production capacity at its Thor Motor Coach subsidiary by purchasing a factory building in Bristol.

The above projects are bullet points in a longer list of local companies and retailers that are taking part in our nation’s expanding economy. While there will always be some churn with local companies coming and going, overall our economy is enjoying extraordinary success.

We should count ourselves very fortunate.

Heartland RVs Reports Toy Hauler Sales Heat Up

Heartland RVs is reporting marked sales growth for its Road Warrior and Edge fifth-wheel toy haulers in 2016 as year-over-year retail registrations have grown 45 percent, the company said, citing internal data. *“Our market share growth for the Road Warrior and Edge has increased significantly,” stated General Manager Andy Wesdorp in a press release. “In addition, we launched two new floorplans for Edge this past fall, dialing in on specific features and amenities that are trending with consumers. The typical toy hauler buyer has changed from five years ago and we continue to adapt and build product that targets those hot button features with consumers. Our dealers have taken note, and responded by stocking more units which has resulted in phenomenal retail growth.”Eyeing future growth into 2017, Heartland opened a new plant at its Elkhart, Ind., campus in late November dedicated to production of the Edge and Road Warrior brands.

Continue reading “Heartland RVs Reports Toy Hauler Sales Heat Up”

Heartland Terry Classic Taps Retro Fad

Heartland Terry Classic Taps Retro Fad

February 10, 2017 by of RV Business News

Elkhart, Ind.-based Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC has rolled out an iconic badge with the Terry Classic “retro” trailer, which debuted as a concept vehicle at last September’s Elkhart RV Open House. (To view a video click here.)

Coley Brady, vice president of sales and marketing, told RVBUSINESS that in late 2009 Heartland acquired all the travel trailer trademarks and brands from Fleetwood Enterprise Inc. following the company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing as a result of the recession.

Continue reading “Heartland Terry Classic Taps Retro Fad”

2016 Heartland Owners Club North American Rally: RECAP

Now that winter has set upon early in most parts of the country, Heartland Owners have been busy either winterizing their coaches and campers or taking their ball (Heartlands) and going home…or somewhere much warmer.  I think its a good time to rewind to look back and share the happenings at our wonderful National Rally that was held in the lively Las Vegas in early October.

First, we all owe so much to Jim Beletti, Heartland RV’s Director of Owner Interests and Julie Hancock, Heartland Owners Club Manager who, as a team, tirelessly organized the whole shebang.  With each North American Rally, it seems that they get better than the year before.  Planning began for this rally in 2011 and continued through 2015.  Jim flew out to Las Vegas in 2013 and 2015 as he worked on finding an appropriate venue where we could fit 150 Heartlands, rally rooms to host the Vendor Hall, Rally Hall, meet with caterers, entertainment, tours, obtaining contracts etc.  Once he scored the venue, he released the dates and location so we, HOC members could make plans to attend.  Then Julie went to work programming and testing the rally registration site.

Our pre-rally days (October 2-5, 2016) started with the arrival of our rally attendees at the Oasis Las Vegas RV Resort.  Prior to the pre-rally, Jim’s rally core team arrived.  They hit the ground running,  picking up and organizing rally documentation and door prizes, getting the rooms setup and stuffing the rally bags.  Johnnie Walker RV delivered several new model Heartland ‘display coaches’ for members to take a look-see.  On Tuesday, a few Heartland Owners opened up their coaches for tours showcasing their mods and decorating ideas.

And then it happened. Heartland RV’s proudly made their presence known parading one by one as they entered the gates of Oasis Las Vegas RV Resort.  These couple days were a bit hectic; getting pre-rally attendees parked and set up and presented their own swag bags, credentials and schedules.  Members who signed up prior, got their rigs weighed and professional washes all three pre-rally days.  There were three Pre-Rally tours:
– Hoover Dam
– Rick’s Restorations/Mob Museum/Fremont Street/Downtown tour
– Vegas “Points of Interest” tour
During the Pre-Rally, members did what they wanted on their own schedule.  Many went down to the Vegas Strip, others went to Valley of Fire and Hoover Dam.  On Wednesday, Len Trujillo led a caravan of golfers to the Legacy Golf Club for a 9:00 am Tee Time.  Dometic and Atwood provided representatives to address minor issues and answer questions about their products.  In the early evening, we all gathered at the Casablanca Commons in the RV Resort for the Chili Dog Meet and Greet; a great time had by all to meet new folks and see old Heartland friends.

The first day of the Rally (Thursday, October 6th) had a full schedule.  We started our day early at 7am for coffee, tea and donuts in the rally room. Vendor tables opened up at the Heartland Marketplace with Dometic, Atwood, Dexter Axle, RV LED Lights, Theresa Stewart Jewelry, Valor TPMS, MORyde, Nancy Beletti’s Mary Kay Cosmetics, Lisa Brown’s Young Living Essential Oils and Jewelry Designs, Crocheted Creations by Cathy Daniels, and Teri Wescott Jewelry.

Ann Mayer led the morning Wake Up Workout zero impact exercises, seminars and presentations throughout the day.  We all caravanned over to the M Resort Spa Casino for a 5pm belly-stuffing buffet dinner and then danced it all off at the Ravello Lounge for music entertainment (think ‘Beach Boys’ and the ‘Eagles’).

Day two (Friday, October 7th) was a repeat of the day prior.  Our evening was a planned patio party with with music entertainment provided by Heartlanders, Len Trujillo (a fabulous one man band).

Saturday, we all rose early again for morning hot beverages and sugary vittles with presentations and seminars until noon.  We all met at the big rally room at 5pm for a wonderfully tasty catered dinner and fellowship.  After dinner, we sat through the Heartland Gives Back presentation ‘Soldier’s Best Friend’ (very few dry eyes).

This year’s Heartland Gives Back initiative (HGBi) will beneficiary will be Soldier’s Best Friend (SBF). SBF provides U.S. military veterans living with combat-related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) with Service or Therapeutic Companion Dogs, most of which are rescued from local shelters. The veteran and dog train together to build a trusting relationship that saves two lives at once and inspires countless others.

We proudly opened our hearts and wallets raising over $4000 that evening; the amount needed to train one animal to be put into the service of a military veteran.

After the presentation and eyes were dried from the emotional presentation, the door prize drawings began with Jim Beletti emceeing the event.  My, there were A LOT of door prizes!  The prize runners surely got their workout that evening delivering to the winners at their tables.  After all the door prizes were awarded, we put on our dancing shoes to a DJ music venue.

After door prizes, Jim Beletti asked the Soldier’s Best Friend representative to return to the stage.  At that point, Jim pulled out a poster-sized check from Heartland RVs for ANOTHER $4000!  Can you believe it?  Chris Hermon, President of Heartland RVs authorized Jim to make a matching donation for up to $4000.  Wow – $8000 was raised in total for Soldier’s Best Friend, fully funding the training of “TWO” animals to be put into the service of two military veterans.  Thank you Chris Hermon and Heartland RVs!

Sunday morning, we woke with our alarm clocks onc last time for an early morning all-hands catered breakfast in the Rally Room.  Rally attendees said their goodbyes with hugs and handshakes checking out by noon with a few core team volunteers staying behind to clean up the venue.

So, if you didn’t attend yet are reading this, let’s just say you missed a GREAT ONE!  We hope to see you in 2017!

Save the date!!

2017 North American Heartland Owners Rally!

Elkhart County 4H Fairgrounds

Goshen, Indiana USA

June 13-18, 2017

(a 7-day pre-rally is also being planned for June 6-12)

(link to rally details)

See you in the Heartland!

 

 

Landmark 365 Among Top 5 Best Luxury Fifth Wheels

Top 5 Best Luxury Fifth Wheels

(Note from HOC Editor:  Posting just the details of the Landmark.  If you’re interested in reading about the others, please click on the above link or HERE)

There is a real difference between taking an RV road trip and taking a luxury RV road trip. If you want a truly elegant RVing experience, then you will want to check out some of the first-class models that can make any trip a relaxing, magnificent, and comfortable adventure. That is why a luxury fifth wheel is just what the doctor ordered to make your next RV road trip something to be remembered for the rest of your life.

You’re going to need interior fireplaces, overstuffed, comfortable chairs, plenty of floorspace to stretch out in and much more to really enjoy a road trip. That is where these luxury fifth wheels shine! But, with so many to choose from, it can be a bit daunting to try and pick out the absolute right one.

Fortunately, we have exactly what you need! Your fellow RVers have cast their votes and written their reviews and we have gathered them up to create this list of the top 5 best luxury fifth wheel on the market for the 2017 model year.

Most Popular Luxury Travel Trailers:

    1. DRV Luxury Suites Mobile Suite
    2. Heartland Landmark 365
    3. Forest River RV Cardinal
    4. Dutchmen RV Voltage
    5. Forest River RV Cedar Creek Hathaway Edition

Criteria for Making the List: Choosing the ‘best’ of anything can always lead to debate. However, these top luxury travel trailers are ones RV owners voted on with their demand and by popularity. Based on quality, features, floor plan layouts, space, and options, more people asked about or shopped for these luxury travel trailers than any others.

#2 – 2017 Heartland Landmark 365

Masterful Suites

No. of Floorplans Unloaded Weight Sleeps Length
8 14000-15600 lbs 3-4 35-42 feet

Why RVingPlanet recommends the 2017 Heartland Landmark 365 fifth wheel:  When it comes to high quality luxury, Heartland makes it easy for you to find the perfect fifth wheel. The Heartland Landmark 365 is the example of the top standard of luxury that you just won’t find in any fifth wheel. Filled with great features and a stylish interior, the Landmark 365 has ample lighting, a spacious floorplan that includes a kitchen island, and residential appliances that will make you feel right at home. Check out some of the Heartland Landmark 365 floorplans: Newport, Syracuse, and Charleston.

The Heartland Landmark 365 goes the extra mile with three slides, sleeping capacity of up to four people, and one and a half baths so that you and your family have plenty of privacy even when on the road. There is even an optional walk-in pantry floorplan, allowing you to store even more food and gear when you are on those particularly long trips.

Key features:

  • 4 out of 5 star rating!
  • Available in 8 floor plans to fit your needs.
  • Dinette for two for casual and intimate dining.
  • Entertainment unit in one of the slides for more floor space.
  • Overstuffed, quality seating for added comfort on the road.
  • Kitchen island with cover-able sink for more counter space.

RVDA Honors ‘Quality Circle Awards’ Recipients

RVDA Honors ‘Quality Circle Awards’ Recipients

November 29, 2016 by  RV Business News

The Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) honored RV brands built by 15 manufacturers with its Quality Circle Award Monday (Nov. 28) at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Louisville, Ky., preluding today’s opening of the RVIA National RV Trade Show. (To view a slideshow of the presentation along with other Monday night Louisville activities and today’s Outlook Breakfast scroll to the right side of the RVBUSINESS.com home page. Photos by Shawn Spence).

RVDA Chairman Darrel Friesen of All Season’s RV Center in Yuba City, Calif., said that the Dealer Satisfaction Index (DSI) initiative is another way the organization helps serve as “the voice of the dealer in industry relations, which are so important to the overall health of the RV business.” Continue reading “RVDA Honors ‘Quality Circle Awards’ Recipients”

‘Open House’ Delivers as Dealers Buy Up Product

‘Open House’ Delivers as Dealers Buy Up Product

September 21, 2016 by

The biggest event of the year for the largest recreational vehicle company in the world is off and running with new amenities as the top attractions.

160919-OPENHOUSE-1968-300x250
Dealers enjoy dinner at the RV Open House (Photo by Shawn Spence, RVBusiness Magazine)

As reported by the Elkhart Truth, Thor Industries Inc.’s 2016 Open House opened on Monday (Sept. 19) morning at the RV/MH Hall of Fame, giving dealers a good look at new models. By mid-morning a steady stream of dealers were going in and out of the more than 500 units on display.

“I come here every year,” said Doug Ross, who owns an RV dealership in Alberta, Canada. “Come here just to look around, buy some models for the coming year.”

That’s what the Open House is all about – making big sales so local RV manufacturers have orders to produce during the coming winter months. Between the open houses that Thor and rival Forest River Inc. are hosting this week in Elkhart, a projected $2 billion in sales could be completed.

For Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC, a subsidiary of Thor, the Open House sales can keep production lines busy until early spring.

“This is not only a big deal for the RV manufacturers. It is also a big deal for the suppliers and employees as well,” said Chris Hermon, president of Heartland.