RVIA Projects Near-Record 2021 Shipments

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RVIA expects wholesale RV shipments to gain 20 percent in 2021, according to the association’s Winter 2020 RV RoadSigns report released today.

The report, prepared by ITR Economics for RVIA, provides wholesale shipment quarterly projections and macroeconomic factor insight impacting the RV industry. It projects 502,582 units to be shipped next year, up from 423,628 total units in 2020. The projection represents an 18.7 percent increase from this year’s total.

“The RV industry is on track to break half a million RV shipments in 2021 for only the second time in our history,” RVIA President Craig Kirby stated.

The industry hit a record 504,599 shipments in 2017. There is opportunity for numbers to eclipse that record next year, said Bill Baker, RVIA senior director of membership and research.

Looking at the data, however, the likely outcome will be 502,582 shipments, he said.

The industry was on track to have a solid year prior to the shutdown, Baker said.

“Regardless of the pandemic, after the shutdown, [the industry] was really driven by strong consumer demand for folks who are new or considered RVing, and the environment was now pushing for that purchase,” Baker said. “RVing provides consumers the freedom to vacation and travel in a socially distanced way.”

This year’s total would represent a 4.3 percent increase from 2019, when 406,700 RVs shipped. Over the next two months, RVIA anticipates shipments to finish within a range of 414,000 to 433,100 units, with the likely outcome being 423,628 units, despite a six- to eight-week shutdown.

Towable RV shipments are expected to reach 453,200 units in 2021, up 17.8 percent from a most likely total of 384,600 this year.

Motor home shipments are projected to range between 48,100 and 50,200 units, with a most likely total of 49,200 units in 2021. That would be a 26 percent increase from the likely 39,000 units shipped in 2020.

ITR Economics reported that its leading economic indicator system is pointing toward positive growth conditions for the RV market.

“It’s in the strong consumer demand and rebuilding the inventory for dealers,” Baker said. “Supply chain constraints will be removed.”

On Dec. 8, RVIA will host a members-only webinar from 2-3 p.m. EST to review the new Winter RV RoadSigns forecasts. The webinar will feature ITR Economics Senior Economist and Econ Manager Eric Post.

During the 60-minute webinar, Post will review the report’s terminology and methodology, providing a macroeconomic overview and forecast analysis with supporting evidence and risks.

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