The Recreational Vehicle Industry saw a grim several years in which many companies making RVs, travel trailers, and toy haulers went out of business or were consolidated and absorbed by other companies. But those companies with the means and foresight to tough it out were rewarded by strong 2012 sales. One of the beneficiaries of the resurgent industry is Ford, which supplies several motorhome manufacturers with its front-engine V-10 chassis.
Class A motorhome sales saw a rise of 14 percent overall for 2012 with the most growth in the last quarter, with sales up 33 percent in December and up 43 percent overall for the fourth quarter. Ford says registrations for its F-53 motorhome chassis are at their highest level in five years. Accompanying increased demand for the chassis is increased production rates for the 6.8-liter V-10, which will increase by 25 percent by 2014. Manufactured at Ford's Windsor, Ontario, engine plant, the engine is offered in the E-Series van, F-Series Super Duty chassis cab models, and the F-650 medium-duty truck.
Final assembly of the chassis are performed by Detroit Chassis, and are purchased by such recognized RV companies as Winnebago, Thor, and Fleetwood.