Practically 550 towable RVs are on website on the Elkhart County Fairgrounds in Goshen, Ind., this week for the eighth-annual 2022 Grand Design Nationwide House owners Rally.
Tuesday’s occasions kicked off with a spotlight for the GDRV house owners in attendance: a gap ceremony and deal with by Grand Design CEO Don Clark, throughout which he launched key company staff members and spoke of what future plans maintain for his firm – together with an all-new journey journey trailer below the Think about model and a touch of a possible foray into the motorized area.
Pre-rally occasions, together with a golf outing at Meadow Valley Golf Membership in Middlebury, kicked off the proceedings on Monday (Aug. 29) with a full slate of actions on faucet all through this week. Rally-goers are being handled to a variety of actions, together with Grand Design plant excursions, meals, music, socializing, video games, focus teams, crafts, seminars and extra.
Clark’s deal with was preceded by the Pledge of Allegiance, the presentation of the colours, the singing of the Nationwide Anthem and an invocation.
“Wow, what a crowd we’ve as we speak,” Clark instructed these in attendance. “That is phenomenal, incredible. … I do know it takes a village to placed on a rally like this and I do know there are simply increasingly and extra Grand Design rallies all through the nation, which is simply so thrilling. And we’re rising. As we proceed to develop as an organization, alternatives like it will proceed to develop.”
Clark then acknowledged all of the volunteers, model ambassadors, social influencers and Grand Design employees who made the rally potential and introduced that 541 rigs and 1,250 individuals had been in attendance, noting that fifty% of these had been first-timers.
When recognizing those that traveled farthest to the rally, Clark requested what number of had been from Alaska and added, “So, I gained’t ask you the way a lot cash in fuel you spent, however it simply turned $1,000 much less. Grand Design goes to pay $1,000 to your fuel.”
Noting that Grand Design is celebrating its tenth yr in enterprise, Clark invited plant, product and common managers to the stage and stated throughout these 10 years the corporate has grown from three to 2,500 individuals.
“Behind me as we speak are a few of the most educated RV builders and designers within the trade, bar none,” Clark stated.
“These guys are shy. They’re by no means going to boast about what they do, however let me share a little bit little bit of what they do: Momentum fifth-wheels are the No. 1-selling toy hauler fifth-wheel in North America. Momentum journey trailers are the No. 1 toy hauler journey trailers in North America. Solitude is the No. 2 luxurious fifth-wheel and dealing on it. Think about is the No. 1-selling laminated journey trailer in North America. The Reflection fifth-wheel, of any class, is the No. 1-selling fifth-wheel in North America. … This staff has carried out an superior job.”
Clark then fielded questions submitted earlier by house owners, the primary of which concerned “horrible dealership, customer support and repairs.” Jerry McCarthy, senior vp of service operations, fielded the query, saying that Grand Design works onerous to accomplice with sellers working straight with them to enhance mounted operations.
“We’re not afraid to go face-to-face with our sellers to get them to handle our clients as a result of clearly we imagine in caring for our clients,” McCarthy stated. “We’re doing every part we will with coaching and certification for technicians and several other different packages particularly designed to enhance the extent of service at our dealerships.”
One proprietor requested, “Is it true that Grand Design is now making Minis for Winnebago.”
Clark responded, “No. No, however that’s not too far off. We’re underway researching the mini motorhome market and the van conversion market to see if that’s an area we need to play in.”
One proprietor questioned a few downturn within the trade. Clark responded that the RV trade hit an all-time excessive throughout the pandemic and lots of people found RVing. Lots of these individuals will stay within the life-style and, whereas there could also be a downturn, the trade, he maintained, will be capable to modify.
On a query relating to service, Clark defined that Grand Design has simply added an almost 300,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art service heart in Elkhart and has invested in and continues to assist the RV Technical Institute for which Clark sits on the board of administrators.
Grand Design additionally has partnered with main elements distributor NTP-STAG to get elements delivered to sellers extra quickly.
The brand new, small journey trailer talked about beforehand is the AIM – or Journey In Movement sequence – that will likely be provided in 2023 with 4 ground plans starting from 3,500 kilos to 4,100 kilos, stated Lynn Bontrager, Think about plant supervisor.
“I’m excited. Anyone who has a small driveway, a small car to tow with, it nonetheless has every part in it. It’s coming this winter. We’re actually enthusiastic about it,” he stated