RV sales are off to a strong start in 2020, according to Southwestern RV dealers attending the Dallas RV SuperSale show last weekend.
“Overall commentary from dealers is that the season has been very strong so far in [the Southwest],” BMO Captial Markets analyst Gerrick Johnson wrote in a research note. “The Houston RV Show was also cited as being up year over year. Other early-season shows, as long as they were not hampered by unfavorable weather, were also called out as positive. We also heard from dealers that buying activity is strong on the dealer lots as well.”
Industry participants in the Dallas RV SuperSale said consumers were not afraid to spend money at the show and that more customers were in attendance year over year, according to the report. As such, Texas dealers are beginning to order inventory more aggressively, due to the increased retail performance.
The sale performance was largely centered on premium products, such as the Winnebago Grand Design. The number of units the brand had on display was up 70% compared with the same time last year and “we think Grand Design’s retail performance will be up significantly YoY at this show, and that it will continue to easily outpace the broader industry,” Johnson said.
Despite the positive early outlook, industry expectations are that RV sales will remain flat to up in the low-single-digit range in 2020.
“Several reasons we’ve heard include easy comparisons to start 2020, such as that weather was challenging in early 2019 and the fact that it’s still an election year,” Johnson explained. “We can’t help but think that some dealers are still a little gun-shy about planning for more robust growth and bringing in more inventory. Thus, our expectation for flat North American retail and wholesale sales 2020 is maintained.”