Mandalay Introduces Valencia
Mandalay Luxury Division, a division of Thor Industries, C847, has added the new Valencia to its lineup of type A diesel motorhomes for 2006. According to company officials, the Valencia has been designed for those who want the style and longevity of a diesel motorhome at a price point comparable to a luxury gas motorhome.
The Valencia is built on the Freightliner XC chassis with a 300-horsepower Cummins ISB diesel engine that provides 600 pound-feet of torque. Other notable chassis features include an Allison 2500 Series transmission, an engine exhaust brake, full air suspension and brakes, and a 28,000-pound gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR).
Standard features include a full-view one-piece windshield with steel-cage construction for added durability; fully automatic hydraulic leveling jacks; front and rear molded fiberglass caps; a VIP steering wheel; a 7.5-kilowatt Guardian RV diesel generator; and a heated systems compartment with ready access to hookups. The newly designed exterior paint and graphics packages and new full-body paint options offer more choices for consumers.
The Valencia is available in double-, triple-, and quadruple-slideout floor plans. Standard interior features include a full 84-inch interior ceiling height; a fabric-upholstered jackknife sofa with storage; fluorescent ceiling lighting in the living room and kitchen; a booth dinette with a laminate table; a 30-inch over-the-range microwave-convection oven; a 27-inch color television; day-night shades in the living room; and an oversized AM-FM radio with large buttons, compact disc and cassette players, and weather band. Three contemporary interior décor packages are available, and cabinetry is offered in standard oak as well as optional cherry and maple wood.
For additional information about the Valencia, call (866) 919-4444 or visit www.mandalaycoach.com.
ARVC Study Sheds Light On Campers
“The American Camper: Profiles and Perspectives,” a research project conducted by Orlando, Florida-based Yesawich, Pepperdine, Brown & Russell for the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC), explored the unique lifestyles and leisure travel preferences/intentions of active campers and RV owners.
The study’s results are based on a sample of 1,602 active campers and RV owners (adults who have taken one or more overnight trips in which they stayed in a campground or RV park/resort during the past two years) that was divided into two segments. The first segment consists of a nationally projectable sample of 802 active campers who were targeted using a random-digit dialing survey. The second segment is a sample of 800 known RV owners obtained via a telephone interview.
Among the key findings in the study:
With more than 29 million RV owners and active campers spending an average of $60 per day (as a family) for 26.5 nights per year, the contribution to the United States economy from this segment of the population is more than $20 billion annually.
* Although nearly 40 percent of RV owners mentioned higher gas prices as a reason to take fewer trips in the next year, one-quarter of survey respondents said they would not re-evaluate their travel plans until the price of gasoline reaches $4 per gallon or more.
* Half of both RV owners and active campers have taken trips with extended family, including grandparents and grandchildren.
* Baby boomers and mature adults comprise nearly 90 percent of RV owners, while baby boomers alone make up nearly 50 percent of active campers.
* More than 50 percent of both RV owners and active campers would like to visit the western United States during the next two years.
* Nearly 70 percent of RV owners are booking reservations via phone, as compared to slightly more than 30 percent who book online directly through the campground or RV park/resort.
* Based on one or more trips in the last two years, nearly 60 percent of RV enthusiasts are hitting the road purely for entertainment/enjoyment; 41 percent of RVers do so to visit friends/family; 16 percent for class/family reunions; and nearly one in 10 for work in the area.
* Amenities sought after in both RV parks and campgrounds include larger sites (nearly 50 percent cited), high ratings in a national camping directory, attractive landscaping and cooking areas, and quick check-in.
“ARVC was reassured to find that outside factors, such as gas prices, have limited impact on the enthusiasm and dedication that RVers and campers of all ages have towards this form of recreation, which encourages appreciation of nature’s wonders,” said ARVC president Linda Profaizer. “The results of the study provide our industry with factual information to convey to the media and the public at large.”
The National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) represents more than 3,900 parks and campgrounds throughout the United States and Canada. For more information about the association, visit www.arvc.org.
Fantasy RV Tours Acquires Creative World Name; Working With Former Customers To Reschedule Tours
Following the untimely death of founder Bill LaGrange in November 2004 and the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, Creative World RV Rallies and Caravans, based in New Orleans, Louisiana, ceased operations. Unfortunately, many customers who already had made deposits on future tours were left with little recourse in recovering the money they had sent in.
Fantasy RV Tours, C5644, based in Gunnison, Colorado, has purchased the Creative World RV Rallies and Caravans name and is working to help folks who had previously booked tours with Creative World to experience the rally or caravan they signed up for. Fantasy RV Tours has rescheduled 10 of the Creative World tours for 2006 and hopes to reassemble all of the 2007 tours that had been scheduled. The 10 2006 tours include Kentucky Derby; Michigan Lakes; Calgary Stampede; Canadian Rockies; Canadian Maritimes; Lewis & Clark; New England Fall Colors; Grand Circle; Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta; and Rose Parade.
Deposits sent to Creative World for these or other tours will be honored by Fantasy RV Tours for the intended tour or any other Fantasy RV tour this year or in the future, provided the customer has his or her confirmation from Creative World. Customers who no longer have their confirmation can contact Fantasy RV Tours and the company will work with them to confirm that they had indeed made the deposit. Fantasy RV Tours will not refund any deposits made to Creative World.
Because Creative World went out of business and some legal matters still need to be settled, Fantasy RV Tours has been unable to obtain the records or assets from Creative World. However, the company has hired Creative World’s former office manager and has retained the services of many of its wagon masters and tail gunners in an effort to bring the company back to the way it operated before Mr. LaGrange’s death and Hurricane Katrina.
For more information, or to reschedule a tour, call (800) 952-8496 and ask for Lisa Marks.
World Cup Soccer Fans Find Motorhome Travel The Way To Go
This summer 32 teams will compete in the 64-match FIFA World Cup Soccer tournament that will be played in 12 German cities beginning on June 9 and culminating in the final game at Berlin’s renovated Olympic Stadium on July 9. With so many countries involved, a huge number of people will travel to Germany for what is considered the world’s biggest sporting event.
One of the best ways for fans to travel between the cities and have a place to stay is by renting a motorhome. Helping to supply this demand is Motorhomes Worldwide, an international wholesale reservations company that has launched a Web site, www.worldcupmotorhomes.com, dedicated to helping folks interested in renting a motorhome for this event.
Motorhomes Worldwide founder and managing director Tony Wilson said that the demand for motorhome/RV (also known as an RV/Camping-Car/Wohnmobil/Campervan, Camper, or Motorcaravan) accommodations for World Cup followers is unprecedented.
“The virtual home-on-wheels accommodation option is most affordable and a great way to follow the games throughout Germany,” he said. According to Mr. Wilson, the company has a wide choice of motorhome/RV models available to visitors in Germany and throughout Europe. He also said that the company has secured a new release of RVs that will be available for World Cup fans.
Mr. Wilson said that reservations are already very heavy and suggested that those interested in renting a motorhome for the World Cup event should do so soon.
Although the games are being played in Germany, the company also will have pick-up locations in Italy, France, Holland, Spain, Great Britain, Ireland, Denmark, Portugal, Norway, Greece, Sweden, Bulgaria, Finland, Scotland, Hungary, Estonia, Slovenia, and Austria.
Great Outdoors Week 2006 Activities Slated For June
Great Outdoors Week 2006, which takes place from June 12 through 17, will once again highlight the efforts of thousands of people to enhance outdoor recreation in the 21st century. The five-day celebration, coordinated by the American Recreation Coalition (ARC), will include events hosted by more than a dozen federal agencies and national organizations.
Topics will include a “National Recreation Issues Update” and a Recreation Policy Forum on “21st Century Models for Partnerships in the Great Outdoors.” Plans also include a briefing by National Park Service director Fran Mainella regarding the agency’s role in increasing the public’s physical activity through recreation. Dale Hall, director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Dale Bosworth, chief of the U.S. Forest Service, will speak about current and future recreation policies being undertaken by their respective agencies. A special focus will be on “Byways 2021,” an initiative that will celebrate the accomplishments made by the National Scenic Byways program and its blueprint for the future of America’s byways.
For the third year, Great Outdoors Week will be a key component of Great Outdoors Month, which was first proclaimed by President George W. Bush in 2004. Throughout the month of June, numerous community recreation events and meetings will take place as well, including National Trails Day and National Fishing and Boating Week. Details about these events and others can be found by visiting www.greatoutdoorsmonth.org.
For more information about the various activities that are scheduled for Great Outdoors Week 2006, visit www.funoutdoors.com.
Caterpillar Enjoys Increased Demand; Looks Forward With 2007 ACERT Engines
According to a report by R.L. Polk & Co., Caterpillar Inc., C4743, has more than 1.5 million of its engines on the road today and has shipped more than 1.1 million on-highway engines since 1995, many of them in the motorhome market.
According to Caterpillar officials, part of the reason for this demand in recent years has been the company’s implementation of state-of-the-art ACERT Technology, which was designed to meet new emissions standards without sacrificing performance and fuel economy.
The ACERT Technology employed by the new Caterpillar engine line for 2007 has been refined to meet the more stringent 2007 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) emissions regulations. According to company officials, two major enhancements “” a refined combustion process called Clean Gas Induction (CGI) and a self-regenerating Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) “” ensure that Caterpillar engines meet the 2007 emissions regulations without sacrificing reliability, durability, and fuel economy advantage.
“The four basic systems of ACERT Technology “” air management, precision combustion, advanced electronics, and effective aftertreatment “” are the foundation of our 2007 technology path,” said Greg Gauger, director of Caterpillar On-Highway Power Systems.
For more information about Caterpillar’s engines and its ACERT Technology, visit http://ohe.cat.com.