The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association commissioned an Economic Impact Study on the RV industry, released on June 7, 2016. The study found that the RV industry contributes about $49.7 billion in economic output or 0.28 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. Through its production and distribution linkages, the industry impacts firms in 426 of the 440 sectors of the United States economy.
Nationwide, the industry is responsible for 216,170 jobs, both directly and inderectly, creating an economic impact of $37.5 billion. The full study results, along with each individual state and congressional district's economic impact is available on the website by clicking here .
Mon Nov 20, 2017
Author: Scott Hansen
PullRite introduced a single-point fifth wheel hitch to the RV market. The company says the new hitch brings all the advantages from every other hitch into one.
The company started work on the revolutionary single-point fifth wheel hitch about six years ago when a competitor came to market with a lightweight gooseneck-mounted fifth wheel hitch. PullRite National Sales Manager Scott Later says he went to the company's engineering department to find out how they could compete.
"We went to engineering to tell them to design something that could compete. After a few months, they came back and said they can't find anything that attaches to the gooseneck ball that's not going to cause significant damage to the bed of the truck," Later says. "When you have a single-point hitch and it's hooked up to a fifth wheel and rocks back and forth, the only thing it has to dig into is the bed of the truck. The engineers told us they could give us one, but it would cause damage. We said no, that we don't want to go to market with something that will damage the truck."
Consequently, over the several years in between, PullRite came up with a pin and ball and a coupler on top of a pyramid style hitch to create a new towing platform. That was when the company debuted the Four-Point Super Lite Hitch, which Later said was well received. However, dealers were still looking for an answer for their customers who already had a goose-neck hitch previously mounted in their truck.
"We didn't have an answer. It still had to be attached to the bed rails. We recommissioned engineering to figure out how to make it work," Later says. "Here we are, two years later and we're going to market with a single-point hitch."
The new hitch also represents the first time PullRite has built a single-point hitch as opposed to a four-point hitch. The traditional four-point hitch connects at four points on the bed rails of the truck, while the single point hitch connects to one point on the gooseneck ball in the bed. The design also allows it to be significantly lighter weight, at 64 pounds, coming in at about 100 pounds lighter than the traditional four-point hitch, Later says.
Later says the single-point hitch had been gaining popularity in the RV market for the past five or six years because of several reasons. Later highlighted three of them as to why the new hitch was in high demand in the market.
"No. 1 is that people want clean beds. They want to be able to take everything out of their beds," he says. "Before, it had those exclusive mounted bed rails and customers hated that they were permanently mounted to the bed. We've had a solution for 20 years called Clean Bed Technology, but there's a significant cost to it. The gooseneck version provides an economic version to be able to take everything out of the truck."
The Bed Saver Rails, offered exclusively through PullRite, are designed to stay flat against the bed during the vehicle's stops and starts, which distribute torqueing stresses across the bed channels over a wide area, which is unlike other single point hitches that rise up off the bed creating focused points that can damage the bed over time.
Secondly, Later says, the gooseneck single-point hitches have been a popular item in the market, especially in rural agriculture towing in both fifth wheels and gooseneck trucks. This new hitch provides a solution to both styles of towing.
Third is the reduced price. The reduced steel content makes for a lesser cost. Most American-made fifth wheel hitches will run in the area of $800-900. The Single-Point Fifth Wheel Hitch has an MSRP of $789.
Finally, one of the biggest advantages to this model, Later says, is the ease of hooking and unhooking the hitch.
"You can hook it up at any angle, unhook it at any angle," Later says. "You don't have to be right on it, either, as long as it's in the ring of the funnel, it's also the tightest fit in the industry."
The funnel-and-coupler system was introduced two years ago with the company's SuperLite fifth wheel hitch and the same technology continues in this new model.
The hitch has been shown at SEMA and RVDA in Las Vegas, as well as a couple of regional distributors shows over the last few weeks. Later says the response has been extremely well received.
"The response has been phenomenal," he says. "People are really excited to have a lightweight gooseneck version of the fifth wheel hitch. There are similar items on the market. But we feel this one combines the advantages of all of those competitors' hitches by both allowing a gooseneck mount that is totally removable as well as the tightest, easiest connection with the funnel and the coupler."
PullRite will be exhibiting the new Single-Point Fifth Wheel Hitch at its booth, No. 101, at the RVIA National Trade Show in Louisville, Kentucky, Nov. 27-30.