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Home » Market Data and Trends » Business Indicators

RV Business Indicators

March 16, 2015
Prepared by Recreation Vehicle Industry Association


RV Shipments and Sales Data

  • RV shipments in January totaled 28,494 units, 11.9% greater than the same month in 2014, and the largest January total in nine years. Shipments in 2015 are expected to reach approximately 365,000 units, which would be the highest total since 2006. This would mark six consecutive years of shipments growth as the industry has bounced back from effects of the Great Recession.
  • In 2014, RV shipments climbed to 356,735 units, a gain of 11.1% over the previous year. This was the fifth consecutive annual increase and the fourth double digit percentage gain in RV shipments since the end of the last recession.
  • Recent shipments history.



















Reasons for Industry Growth

  • RVs support a balanced and active lifestyle. In a Harris Interactive survey, owners reported that RV travel enables them to experience nature and outdoor activities and enjoy quality family time. RVers reported stronger bonds with loved ones and benefits to children. RVers also cited healthier eating on the road, sleeping their own beds, and having their own bathroom facilities as advantages of RV travel.
  • RV ownership and travel is a great value. A 2014 Vacation Cost Comparison prepared by PKF Consulting USA showed that a family of four can save 27-62% on vacation costs by traveling in an RV, even when factoring in ownership costs and fuel. For a two-person traveling party, savings are 11-48%. Even when fuel prices rise, more than 80% of RV owners say their RV vacations cost less than other forms of travel.
  • RVs have uses as diverse as the people who own them. In addition to vacation travel, owners use RVs for tailgating, travel with pets, business, and to participate in outdoor sports and other leisure activities.
  • Shorter trips closer to home. Research shows that RVers spend more time enjoying campgrounds and less on the road to save fuel and time. More than 90% of RVers take three or more short “mini” vacations per year. With more than 16,000 campgrounds nationwide, it’s easy for RVers to stay closer to home.
  • Fuel cost analysis. Analysis of potential fuel cost increases shows that fuel prices would need to nearly triple over current levels to make RVing more expensive for a family of four than other forms of travel. “While fuel costs are a component of the overall vacation cost, fluctuations in fuel prices aren’t significant enough to affect a family’s decision of whether or not to take RV trips over other types of vacations,” said Kannan Sankaran, PKF’s lead researcher for the study.

Other Factors Behind RV Industry Growth

  • IRS tax deduction. For most RV buyers, interest on their loan is deductible as second home mortgage interest.
  • RV manufacturers are offering innovative new products that offer an optimal mix of size, amenities and price for today’s budget-conscious consumers. Manufacturers are producing lightweight trailers and smaller, fuel-efficient motorhomes. Green technologies such as solar panels and energy efficient components are appearing on an increasing number of RV models.
  • Lifestyle trends continue to spur demand for RVs. RV owners overwhelmingly said in recent surveys that their RVs make it easier to take more frequent weekend getaways or mini-vacations that accommodate busy family schedules.
  • Go RVing ads build demand. The industry’s Go RVing advertising campaign continues to stoke consumer interest in RVs and the RVing lifestyle. The “AWAY” television and print ads are appearing on TV and in print, and Go RVing is partnering with music festivals and sports leagues to expand the campaign’s reach. Details:

Indicators for Future Growth

  • RV ownership has reached record levels. More than nine million households now own an RV – the highest level ever recorded – a 16% increase since 2001 and a 64% gain since 1980.
  • Population and demographic trends favor long-term RV market growth. Buyers aged 35-54 are the largest segment of RV owners, according to the 2011 University of Michigan study of RV consumers commissioned by RVIA.
  • Baby boomers entering retirement. RV sales are expected to benefit as aging baby boomers continue to enter the age range in which RV ownership has been historically highest.



Kevin Broom

Director of Media Relations

Recreation Vehicle Industry Association

703-620-6003, ext. 304


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