Workhorse to Re-enter RV Chassis Market

With RV demand growing stronger, the Workhorse Group plans to re-enter production of Class A motorhome RV chassis at the Workhorse Union City, Indiana plant.

workhorse logoPlans call for delivery of RV chassis in 2015.

The Workhorse nationwide network of over 400 dealerships will support and service the motorhome vehicles.

Workhorse has been recognized as a leader in RV Chassis throughout the strong RV marketplace of the mid-2000s. The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) estimates RV volume was nearly 33,000 units per year in 2007, dropping to 5,900 units in 2009, and has been on a steady incline, with Class A Motorhome 2014 volume of over 21,800 units per year.

The steady growth back to strong current RV volumes, coupled with industry demand and interest, has resulted in the Workhorse brand re-entering the RV Chassis Market.

“Our RV manufacturing customers have always relied on the dependability and performance of the Workhorse RV chassis,” said Stoney Steenekamp, President of AMP Trucks Inc., a subsidiary of Workhorse Group Inc.

“Today, we believe the RV market is strong once again. With the growing demand we have recently seen, it just made sense for us to begin entering back into production.”

Over the years, the Workhorse brand established itself as a leader in building RV chassis, with dependable product solutions and strong support through a network of more than 400 dealerships and service centers across the country.

Workhorse intends to ramp up production of the Class A Motorhome chassis at the Workhorse Union City plant which is currently in limited production of the Workhorse E-GEN vehicle, an EPA-approved electric truck chassis with onboard generator for the medium-duty truck segment. The E-GEN vehicle allows fleet operators to choose gasoline, electric, propane, or CNG fuel options.

Prior to leaving the motorhome chassis market, Workhorse manufactured the W16D diesel chassis
Prior to leaving the motorhome chassis market, Workhorse manufactured the W16D diesel chassis

The Workhorse RV Chassis line will be an improved design, offering both 6.0L and   powerful 8.8 liter gasoline engines, coupled with an Allison transmission. The 8.8L engine is designed to match diesel towing ability and mileage.

“It gives us great delight to once again take our place in the RV Chassis market,” said Steenekamp.

“We believe the demand is there, we will be building an improved RV chassis line, and we fully expect our Workhorse W-16 and W-22 Class A motorhome chassis to quickly be recognized as leaders in the category.”

Details

Workhorse Custom Chassis

Previously a division of Navistar, the Workhorse brand along with the Workhorse Union City, Indiana assembly plant, and network of over 400 dealerships was sold to Workhorse Group Inc. in 2013.

Workhorse Group Inc. manufactures electric drive systems for medium-duty, class 3-6 commercial truck platforms, and can equip its Workhorse chassis with electric, gasoline, propane, or CNG engines.

The company is re-entering the RV Chassis market and will also be building Class A motorhome chassis at the Workhorse Union City, Indiana plant.

Website: www.workhorse.com

http://www.workhorse.com

Worth Pondering…

The RV lifestyle is like nothing else.

It’s leaving home, exploring America, and yet bringing your home along with you!

Stopping at a wayside picnic area, preparing lunch in your kitchen.

It’s sleeping in your own bed every night, yet waking up to a new vista each morning!

The sounds of a crackling campfire; of a mountain stream, of frogs, and crickets.

It’s families drawn closer; it’s retirees being rewarded for many years of labor.

—Loren Eyrich, Two-Lane Roads

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Freightliner Introduces New V-Ride Suspension System

Gaffney, South Carolina-based Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp. (FCCC) unveiled its V-Ride rear suspension system during the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) 51st Annual National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Kentucky, December 3-5.

J.P. Davis, RV product manager for Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation, unveils the new V-Ride rear suspension system at the National RV Trade Show.
J.P. Davis, RV product manager for Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation, unveils the new V-Ride rear suspension system at the National RV Trade Show.

The V-Ride is the first-ever single-axle rear suspension rated at 24,000 pounds, offering luxury motorhome manufacturers more options for floor plan designs and amenities while giving motorhome owners more towing capacity and flexibility, according to a company news release.

The V-Ride Rear Suspension System will be available as an option on the XC chassis from FCCC, beginning in model year 2015.

“The V-Ride is designed for today’s luxury motorhome owner who demands the ability to carry more gear and equip their coaches with more luxury amenities,” said J.P. Davis, RV product manager for FCCC.

“And it’s more than just increased towing capacity that makes V-Ride unique and innovative – its proven design and engineering provide greater durability and a more stable, comfortable ride. It’s truly luxury without limits.”

home_headerThe design and engineering of the V-Ride—already proven in heavy-duty applications—bring new features to the market that provide an improved overall driving experience, the company said. The suspension’s “v-rod”-shaped upper control arms help to dissipate suspension forces through the crossmember and frame rails, reducing stress throughout the suspension.

In addition, the V-Ride’s transverse beam is directly integrated with the trailing arm to form a single-piece U-shaped assembly.

This unified design, combined with the v-rod control arms, reduces sway and provides a more stable motorcoach ride—especially in those instances when a motorcoach’s tendency is to lean or drift outward, as when traveling around a curve.

Combined with its standard volumetric airbags, the V-Ride provides a smooth, stable, comfortable ride.

“The V-Ride maintains superior roll stability and more predictable handling throughout,” added Davis.

“This gives motorhome owners a more confident driving experience in all road conditions.”

Details

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC)

03_10_fcccFreightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) manufactures premium chassis for the motorhome, delivery walk-in van, and school bus, and shuttle bus markets.

FCCC also offers the around-the-clock expertise of its FCCC 24/7 Direct customer service line and a network of more than 400 Freightliner service centers, including the motorhome-tailored Freightliner Oasis Network of more than 90 dealers.

FCCC is a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC, a Daimler company.

Address: 552 Hyatt Street, Gaffney, SC 29341

Phone: (864) 487-1700

Customer Support Center: (800) FTL-HELP (1-800-385-4357)

Website: freightlinerchassis.com

Worth Pondering…
Creative thinking may mean simply the realization that there’s no particular virtue in doing things the way they have always been done.

—Rudolph Flesch

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Spartan Chassis Introduces New Products & Innovations

Charlotte, Michigan-based Spartan Chassis Inc., a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc. displayed its K3 and Mountain Master GT chassis along with several innovations during the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) 51st Annual National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Kentucky, December 3-5.

Spartan K3 Chassis
Spartan K3 Chassis

“Since 1985, Spartan Chassis has developed significant technological innovations that have changed the RV industry,” said Art Ickes, president of the Specialty Vehicles business unit.

“Throughout the years, the demand for Spartan Chassis has continued to remain strong as owners value the innovations Spartan has and continues to develop. In 2013, we saw a strong increase in the number of prospective Class A diesel motorhome owners requesting a Spartan Chassis.”

Spartan will feature a 24,000-pound drive axle as well as introducing Fogmaker North America into the RV market. The Reyco Granning RD2400 drive axle is designed to take advantage of recent changes in Federal Highway Administration laws that allow the use of a single rear axle rated at 24,000 pounds weight capacity. The RD2400 eliminates torque induced drive line grumble which further extends the product’s life cycle.

Fogmaker North America delivers fire suppression systems for engine compartments and enclosed spaces utilizing a patented water mist technology. This system extinguishes fire by targeting the three components (oxygen, fuel, and heat). The system is environmentally friendly and cleanup after activation is simple and fast.

Spartan,pennwell.web.400.400The demand for motorhomes built on a Spartan Chassis has increased 21.5 percent year-over-year from 2012 to 2013. Spartan Chassis’ unit volume this year outperforms the Class A diesel market by over six percentage points. Spartan custom manufactures chassis to the individual specifications of Entegra Coach, Newmar Corp., and Tiffin Motorhomes Inc.

The goal at Spartan Chassis is to provide its end-users with an exceptional RV experience, no matter the destination, duty-cycle, or configuration. To achieve that, Spartan consistently drives innovation that improves maneuverability, ride quality, and coach handling to name a few. Spartan’s OEM customers recognize the company and its ability to design, engineer and manufacture the Premier Foundation.

The National RV Trade Show presented by the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) is the preeminent trade show for the RV dealer market, annually showcasing the latest RV technology and new models.

Details

Spartan Chassis, Inc.

Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a world-class leader in the engineering, manufacturing, and marketing of chassis and aftermarket parts for emergency-response, recreational vehicle (RV), defense, and specialty vehicles.

End users recognize and request the Spartan Chassis brand, which consistently delivers superior performance, exceptional safety ratings and innovations which distinguish us from the competition.

Spartan-Chassis-Inc.Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc.

Website: spartanchassis.com

Spartan Motors, Inc.

Spartan Motors, Inc. designs, engineers, and manufactures specialty chassis, specialty vehicles, truck bodies, and aftermarket parts for the recreational vehicle (RV), emergency response, government services, defense, and delivery and service markets.

The Company’s brand names—Spartan(TM), Spartan Chassis(TM), Spartan ER(TM), Spartan ERV(TM) and Utilimaster(R)—are known for quality, performance, service and first-to-market innovation.

The Company employs approximately 1,800 associates at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Indiana, and Florida.

Spartan reported sales of $471 million in 2012 and is focused on becoming a global leader in the design, engineering and manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis.

Website: spartanmotors.com

Worth Pondering…

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

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October RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced three recall notices involving three recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers—Jackson Mfg. Co., Spartan Motors Chassis, and Open Range R.V. Company.

Jackson Mfg. Co., Inc.

Jackson Mfg. Co., Inc. is recalling 250 model year 2006-2013 Jackson travel trailers manufactured January 1, 2006, through April 25, 2013 and equipped with a Fastec-brand door lock. It may be possible to remove the key from the lock cylinder in a way that potentially jams the deadbolt.

If the deadbolt jams, the interior side of the door lock may also jam. A person inside the travel trailer at the time will then be locked in and be unable to exit the vehicle without using the emergency exit, increasing the risk of injury.

Jackson will notify owners, and Fastec will coordinate the inspection and replacement of the cylinders, as needed, free of charge.

The recall is expected to begin by early November 2013. Owners may contact Jackson at 1-405-224-6013 or Fastec at 1-800-837-2505.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Spartan Motors Chassis, Inc.

Spartan-Chassis-Inc.Spartan Motors Chassis, Inc. is recalling 313 2011 SU and 2011 through 2012 model year MM, K2, and K3 recreational vehicle chassis manufactured from January 28, 2011, through June 28, 2011, equipped with air gauges supplied by Ametek. An incorrect value may have been used in the formula for calculating the sweep angle of the dial.

This may have resulted in the accuracy of the gauge varying as much as eleven percent from the cutout pressure as opposed to the maximum allowable of +/- seven percent. Consequently, these chassis fail to conform to the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 121, “Air Brake Systems.”

In a condition where constant braking may be necessary, the air systems may deplete sooner than expected. This could cause the application of the spring brake without warning and may result in a vehicle crash.

Spartan Chassis will notify owners and replace the affected guages with compliant ones, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin by early October 2013. Owners may contact Spartan at 1-800-543-4277 – Option 1. Spartan’s campaign number is 11018.

In July 2011, Spartan petitioned NHTSA that the noncompliance was inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. In August 2013, NHTSA denied the petition and instructed Spartan to conduct a recall campaign.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Open Range R.V. Company

Open Range RV LogoOpen Range R.V. Company is recalling 9,600 model year 2009-2013 travel trailers manufactured from October 1, 2007, through July 12, 2013, and equipped with Fastec-brand deadbolt locks. It may be possible to remove the key from the lock in a way that potentially jams the deadbolt.

The travel trailer models covered by the recall are: 280RLS; 322RKS; 328RLS; 335BHS; 337RLS; 385RLS; 391RES; 392BHS; 399BHS; 400BHS; JF280RLS; JF287RLS; JF335BHS; JF392BHS; JT287RLS; JT315RLS; JT331BHS; JT337RLS; 287RLS; 310RLS; 345RLS; 379RKS; 393RLS; 399DBR; 399SRL; 427BHS; 429BHS; H341RGR; H395RGR; H396RGR; H397RGR; JF399BHS; JH341RGR; JT301BHS; JT305RLS; JT340FLR; PE119TH; R398RLS; R398RSS; R416RLS; RF316RLS; RT266RLS; RT281FLR; RT296BHS; RT303BHS; RT331BHS; 375BHS; 413RLL; 424RLS; H320MPR; H345MPR; JT359FKS; MR243F; MR274B; MR281FLR; MR285F; MR287B; MR289H; MR293R; MR303BHS; MR325B; MR331BHS; R412RSS; RF270RLS; RF280RLS; RF287RLS; RF298BWS; RF335BHS; RF392BHS; T247FLR; RT316RLS; 359RKS; 386FLR; H304RGR; JT353FES; LF289RES; LF297RLS; LF305BHS; LT252FLR; LT305BHS; MF316RLS; MF329BHS; MF337RLS; MF338RLS; MF357RES; MF395BHS; MR281F; MR316R; R430RLS; RA398FLS; RF329BHS; RF337RLS; RF338RLS; RF357RES; RF395BHS; RT320RES; 389BHS.

If the deadbolt jams, the interior side of the door lock may also jam. A person inside the travel trailer at the time will then be locked in and be unable to exit the vehicle without using the emergency exit, increasing the risk of injury.

Open Range will notify owners, and Fastec will coordinate the inspection and replacement of the cylinders, as needed, free of charge.

The recall is expected to begin by early Nov. 2013. Owners may contact Open Range at 1-260-768-7771 or Fastec at 1-800-837-2505

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the twenty-fourth in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls.

Worth Pondering…

You don’t pay the price for success. You pay the price for failure.

—Zig Ziglar

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More September RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced 4 recall notices involving 4 recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers—Aluminum Trailer Company, Starcraft RV, Peterson Industries, and Spartan Motor Chassis.

Aluminum Trailer Company

ATCNappanee, Indiana-based Aluminum Trailer Company (ATC) is recalling 17 model year 2013 Quest trailers manufactured February 26, 2013, through April 10, 2013. Due to a design change in the Dometic-brand power awning motor assembly, the motor assembly screws may unknowingly shear.

If the motor assembly screws shear, it is possible that the awning can unfurl unexpectedly, either while the vehicle is at rest or while in transit, increasing the risk of personal injury or a vehicle crash.

ATC will notify owners, and Dometic staff will replace the affected motors with one of a different design.

The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule.

Owners may contact ATC at 1-574-773-8360 or Dometic at 1-888-447-0003 for more information. Owners are being instructed not to drive their vehicle until repairs can be performed.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Starcraft RV Inc.

starcraftMiddlebury, Indiana-based Starcraft RV Inc. is recalling 22 model year 2014 Comet Camping Trailers manufactured September 18, 2012, through May 6, 2013. The spare tire bracket mounted on the rear wall is not secured sufficiently and could detach.

If the spare tire bracket detaches from the vehicle while it is being driven, it could become a road hazard increasing the risk of a vehicle crash or injury.

Starcraft will notify owners and dealers will add a metal strap to secure the spare tire bracket, free of charge.

The recall is expected to begin in September 2013.

Owners may contact Starcraft at 1-800-945-4787

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Peterson Industries Inc.

excelSmith Center, Kansas-based Peterson Industries Inc. is recalling 28 model year 2013-2014 Excel travel trailers manufactured February 2013 through June 2013. Due to a design change in the dometic-brand power awning motor assembly, the motor assembly screws may unknowingly shear.

If the motor assembly screws shear, it is possible that the awning can unfurl unexpectedly, either while the vehicle is at rest or while in transit, increasing the risk of personal injury or a vehicle crash.

Peterson Industries Inc. will notify owners, and Dometic staff will replace the affected motors with one of a different design.

The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule.

Owners may contact Peterson at 1-800-368-3759 or Dometic at 1-888-447-0003 for more information. Owners are being instructed not to drive their vehicle until repairs can be performed.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Spartan Motor Chassis, Inc.

Spartan-Chassis-Inc.Charlotte, Michigan-based Spartan Motor Chassis, Inc. is recalling 113 model year 2009-2012 MM, 2011-2014 K2, and 2010-2012 K3 motorhome chassis. Due to contact with the steering relay rod, the ABS modulator valve may fracture, resulting in air not being applied to the affected wheel end.

This may increase stopping distance of the vehicle or cause the vehicle to pull to one side. Either condition increases the risk of a crash.

Spartan will notify owners and dealers will reorient the ABS modulator valve and install spacers for additional clearance, free of charge.

The recall is expected to begin in September 2013.

Owners may contact Spartan at 1-517-543-6400.

Spartan’s recall campaign number is 12008

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the twenty-second in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls.

Worth Pondering…

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

—Aristotle

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And Still More May RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced five recall notices involving four recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers—Forest River, Spartan Motors Chassis, Fleetwood RV, and Gulf Stream Coach.

Forest River, Inc.

forest-RiverElkhart, Indiana-based Forest River, Inc. is recalling 9,526 model year 2013-2014 Forest River models Blue Ridge, Cardinal, Cherokee, Columbus, EVO, Georgetown, Flagstaff, Forester, Lexington, Puma, Rockwood, Sabre, Salem, Sandpiper, Sandstorm, Sierra, Stealth, Sunseeker, Wildcat, Wildwood, Work and Play and XLR; Coachmen models Brookstone, Catalina, Chaparral, Concord, Encounter, Freedom Express, Freelander, Leprechaun, Mirada, Pursuit, and Sportcoach; Prime Time models Avenger, Crusader, Lacrosse, Saniber, and Tracer; Palomino model Maverick Truck Camper; Cargo Mate model Eliminator and Shasta models Revere, Phoenix recreational vehicles manufactured from February 13, 2013 through April 18, 2013.

Due to a design change in the power awning motor assembly, the motor assembly screws may unknowingly shear.

If the motor assembly screws shear, it is possible that the awning can unfurl unexpectedly, either while the vehicle is at rest or while in transit, increasing the risk of personal injury or a vehicle crash.

Forest River will notify owners and Dometic staff will replace the affected motors with motors of a different design. A notification schedule has not yet been provided. Owners may contact Forest River at 1-574-389-4600 or Dometic at 1-888-447-0003 for more information. Owners are being instructed not to drive their vehicle until repairs can be performed.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to safercar.gov.

Spartan Motors Chassis

Spartan-Chassis-Inc.Charlotte, Michigan-based Spartan Motors Chassis is recalling 2,694 model year 2006-2011 K2, and K3 and 2006-2010 MM motorhome chassis manufactured July 20, 2005, through December 17, 2010. The steering gear mounting brackets may crack and detach resulting in a loss of steering.

A loss of steering control may increase the risk of a crash.

Spartan will notify owners. Starting in mid-June 2013, dealers will install a replacement bracket or a reinforcement to the existing bracket. Until the remedy is available, owners may have their vehicle inspected at any Spartan service center. All repairs will be performed free of charge. The recall is expected to begin on, or before, May 17, 2013.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to safercar.gov.

Fleetwood RV, Inc.

Fleetwood logoDecatur, Indiana-based Fleetwood RV, Inc. is recalling 196 model year 2013 Jamboree Sport Diesel, Providence, Tioga DSL and Tioga Ranger DSL; 2014 Excursion, Expedition, Jamboree Sport, Montara Commercial, Searcher Commercial, Southwind, Storm, Terra, and Tioga Ranger; and 2013-2014 Bounder, Bounder Classic, and Discovery recreational vehicles.

The vehicles are equipped with Weatherpro and 9100 series power awnings. Due to a design change in the power awning motor assembly, the motor assembly screws may unknowingly shear.

If the motor assembly screws shear, it is possible that the awning can unfurl unexpectedly, either while the vehicle is at rest or while in transit, increasing the risk of personal injury or a vehicle crash.

Fleetwood RV will notify owners and Dometic staff will replace the affected motors with motors of a different design. Fleetwood RV has not yet provided a notification schedule.

Owners may contact Fleetwood RV Owner Relations at 1-800-509-3418 or Dometic at 1-888-447-0003 for more information. Owners are being instructed not to drive their vehicle until repairs can be performed.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to safercar.gov.

Gulf Stream Coach, Inc.

gulf-stream-logoNappanee, Indiana-based Gulf Stream Coach, Inc. is recalling 126 model year 2001 Ultra, Conquest, Independence, Ultra Supreme, Yellowstone, and Cavalier motorhomes with floorplans 6316 or 8325. The motorhomes were manufactured May 17, 2000, through December 31, 2000. A portion of the electrical wiring may not be properly secured. This condition may cause wear and possible heat development between the refrigerator coils and the wire.

A failure of the wiring could result in property damage, fire, or injury.

Gulf Stream will notify owners, and dealers will repair the motorhomes free of charge. The recall is expected to begin by May 30, 2013. Owners may contact Gulf Stream at 1-800-289-8787. Gulf Stream’s recall campaign number is 13WG-2000.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to safercar.gov.

Gulf Stream Coach, Inc.

gulf-stream-logoNappanee, Indiana-based Gulf Stream Coach, Inc. is recalling 27 model year 2013 Canyon Trail, Sedona, Ridgeline, Kingsport, and Trail Master recreational vehicle trailers manufactured February 13, 2013, through April 24, 2013. The vehicles are equipped with Weatherpro and 9100 series power awnings. Due to a design change in the power awning motor assembly, the motor assembly screws may unknowingly shear.

If the motor assembly screws shear, it is possible that the awning can unfurl unexpectedly, either while the vehicle is at rest or while in transit, increasing the risk of personal injury or a vehicle crash.

Gulf Stream will notify owners and Dometic staff will replace the affected motors with motors of a different design. Gulf Stream has not yet provided a notification schedule.

Owners may contact Gulf Stream at 1-574-773-7761 or Dometic at 1-888-447-0003 for more information. Gulf Stream Coach’s recall number for this campaign is 13AW-0204.

Owners are being instructed not to drive their vehicle until repairs can be performed.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the sixteenth in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls.

Worth Pondering…

The older I get, the more I learn to tolerate human shortcomings—and the less I tolerate bad attitudes.

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AMP Acquires Workhorse from Navistar

Cincinnati-based AMP Holding Inc., through a newly formed subsidiary, Amp Truck Inc., has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Workhorse brand, logo, IP, patents, and assembly plant from Workhorse Custom Chassis LLC, a wholly owned affiliate of Navistar International Corp.

workhorseWorkhorse was the first chassis manufacturer to design and build a chassis specifically for the Class A Gas motor home market.

AMP plans to produce step-vans and other vehicle types using the former Workhorse Custom Chassis plant in Union City, Indiana, according to a news release.

The parties expect to close the acquisition on or about March 13.

A specific timetable to re-open the Workhorse plant will be announced as the transition occurs and order backlogs are established.

With this acquisition AMP will be positioned to be the first truck OEM in the United States to offer a range of alternative fuel vehicles produced in an automated assembly plant.

By offering an all-electric Workhorse chassis along with gasoline powered, and alternative-fuel powered models, AMP will become a premier OEM capable of building alternative fuel vehicles for the commercial market.

AMP’s vehicles will be sold and supported through the existing Workhorse network of 440 dealers.

“Our acquisition of the Workhorse assets will enable us to continue producing the premium-quality chassis that Workhorse is known for while giving us the perfect platform for our battery-electric power-train technology,” said Steve Burns, CEO of AMP.

“It makes good strategic sense for us and we expect to be well positioned to meet the ever increasing demands of the market.”

Details

MP Holding Inc.

MP Holding Inc. is a development-stage company.

The Company is engaged in design, manufacture and sale of modified automobiles and commercial trucks with an all electric drivetrain and battery system.

The Company is developing its operations through a sale, design, and manufacturing facility located in Cincinnati, Ohio.

AMP Electric Vehicles, Inc. (AMP) converts internal combustion engine based vehicles to all electric powertrains, provides original equipment manufacturers (OEM) with AMP designed and integrated modular electric components and provides electric powertrain engineering to end-users.

Worth Pondering…

All things are possible until they are proved impossible—and even the impossible may only be so, as of now.

—Pearl S. Buck

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Freightliner Introduces SL-M Modular Motorhome Chassis

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) introduces the SL-M modular motorhome chassis, adding design flexibility to the power and performance of its SL Series motorhome chassis line.

fccc_logo_fedIn designing the SL-M, FCCC engineers created a versatile RV chassis with a fully customizable basement storage space. Designed and engineered with the luxury RV in mind, the SL-M end result allows builders and owners to maximize their storage capacity and explore a wider range of interior layouts.

The SL-M can accommodate a variety of coach lengths and floor plans, opening up new configuration possibilities for coach manufacturers and RV owners, according to a news release.

“We created the SL Series out of our focus on our customers’ chassis needs and commitment to always providing them chassis options engineered to meet and exceed those needs,” said FCCC President Bob Harbin.

“We certainly took their insights and input into consideration in designing the SL-M. By adding a modular chassis to the SL Series line, we open up our most advanced, durable and reliable chassis to even more customization possibilities.”

The SL Series is the first and only Class A motorhome chassis to be equipped with the Detroit DD13 engine featuring BlueTec Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) emissions technology. This innovative chassis/engine combination offers customers outstanding fuel economy without compromising its powerful drive or comfortable ride, says the release.

detroit-dieselLike the entire SL Series, the SL-M offers the 13-liter, 500 hp DD13 engine from Detroit, which combines the power of 1,650 ft-lb of torque with an Amplified Common Rail System (ACRS) to optimize each injection event and improve fuel economy.

The DD13’s BlueTec SCR emissions technology is proven to meet long-term EPA 2010 emissions requirements by dramatically reducing nitrous oxide (NOx), particulate matter and fine particle emissions, while helping maximize fuel efficiency.

The DD13 also includes Virtual Technician, which integrates GPS technology with engine diagnostics. If the “check engine” light comes on in the RV, the data is sent to the Detroit Customer Support Center. The information is then provided to the customer, along with a choice of authorized service outlets and the opportunity to schedule a repair. Virtual Technician also lets the service outlet know which parts are needed, shortening the overall service time.

The FCCC SL Series offers a standard ZF independent front suspension handling a Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) of 14,600, 16,000, 18,000 and 20,000 lbs., and the result is a smoother ride.

Details

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC)

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation (FCCC) manufactures premium chassis for the motorhome, delivery walk-in van, and school bus, and shuttle bus markets.

Camp FreightlinerFCCC also offers the around-the-clock expertise of its FCCC 24/7 Direct customer service line and a network of more than 400 Freightliner service centers, including the motorhome-tailored Freightliner Oasis Network of more than 90 dealers.

FCCC is a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC, a Daimler company.

Address: 552 Hyatt Street, Gaffney, SC 29341

Phone: (864) 487-1700

Customer Support Center: (800) FTL-HELP (1-800-385-4357)

Website: freightlinerchassis.com

Worth Pondering…
Creative thinking may mean simply the realization that there’s no particular virtue in doing things the way they have always been done.

—Rudolph Flesch

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Spartan Introduces New Innovations

Charlotte, Michigan-based Spartan Chassis, a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc., introduces new innovations which highlight recent progress and define the Company’s strategic intent.

With over $8 billion in annual revenue, the North American RV industry represents a core market with strong growth opportunity for Spartan Motors, Inc. and a strategic reset for Spartan Chassis, according to a news release.

Innovation

High Output/Performance Front Engine Concept Chassis: Code named the Extol and powered by an 8.8 Liter gas engine that offers 430 HP and 512 lb.-ft. of torque (@3400 RPM). This Spartan-branded engine offers a sizable performance improvement over current Class A gas offerings in the market today. This brand extension is uniquely positioned to target the growth segments in the Class A market.

High Performance/Low Cost Concept Chassis: Code named the Revel, this Class A body-on-frame design utilizes a low cab forward chassis architecture and enables the RV OEMs to realize up to 13 percent of additional living space. Powered by a 6.0 Liter gas engine with an established performance record, and an optional Allison 1000 series transmission, this brand extension can re-establish the value equation at the low end of the Class A market.

Redefining Next Generation Ride and Handing: A new Compression Fluid Strut (CFS) that offers reduced response time and greater damping power than a hydro pneumatic system. Spartan is exploring this as an option on all Spartan Chassis.

“The journey or getting there is just as important as being there,” said Tom Gorman, Chief Operating Officer, Spartan Motors.

“Spartan has been known for over three decades as the industry-leader for ride and handling and we just got even better.”

Customer “First” Care
Spartan has always led the industry with after-the-sale support and will continue to prioritize the treatment of its customers.

Customer support: The Company’s service network continues to expand. Delivery of superior after-the-sale service is provided by over 585 authorized Spartan service providers.

Customer service: the best Roadside Assistance program provided in partnership with Good Sam and their network of over 40,000 mobile service providers.

Go-to Market
The established Spartan Chassis customer base continues to drive the strategic focus of the RV business unit.

Featuring the frame: As the RV Class A Diesel Chassis manufacturer with the most comprehensive warranty coverage available, Spartan will visually enhance this feature by painting every chassis with the bright “Spartan” red.

Every Spartan customer matters: Effective January 7, 2013, Spartan will once again provide his and hers Spartan leather jackets to all new owners that buy a new coach from one of our RV OEM partners.

Details

Spartan Chassis Inc.

Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a world-class leader in the engineering, manufacturing, and marketing of chassis and aftermarket parts for emergency-response, recreational vehicle, defense, and specialty vehicles.

End users recognize and request the Spartan Chassis brand, which consistently delivers superior performance, exceptional safety ratings and innovations which distinguish us from the competition.

Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc.

Website: spartanchassis.com

Spartan Motors, Inc.

Spartan Motors, Inc. designs, engineers, and manufactures specialty chassis, specialty vehicles, truck bodies, and aftermarket parts for the recreational vehicle, emergency response, government services, defense, and delivery and service markets.

The company’s brand names—Spartan Chassis, Spartan ERV, and Utilimaster—are known for quality, performance, service, and first-to-market innovation.

The company employs approximately 1,700 associates at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Indiana, Florida, and Texas. Spartan reported sales of $426 million in 2011 and is focused on becoming a global leader in the design, engineering, and manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis.

Website: spartanmotors.com

Worth Pondering…

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Spartan Introduces Compressible Fluid Strut

Spartan Chassis, a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc. introduced a Compressible Fluid Strut (CFS) that offers a collection of performance benefits and opportunities for part-count reduction.

The single unit combines fluid spring, shock absorber, damping, and actuation functions into a lightweight and compact design.

The CFS is currently undergoing Spartan testing and is manufactured by Horstman Incorporated of Sterling Heights, Michigan, according to a news release.

“The psychographic profile of today’s RV owner is far more diverse than years past. The outdoor activities they enjoy run the gamut and the amount of equipment carried on the coach continues to escalate year after year. The additional weight places greater demands on the RV suspension,” said Tom Gorman, Chief Operating Officer, Spartan Motors.

“Concurrently, the customer’s ride quality and vehicle handling expectations are also increasing so we need to continually explore development of higher performing suspension systems and early indications are the CFS out-performs current technologies.”

CFS benefits include:

  • Reduced response time and greater damping power than a hydropneumatic system
  • Fluid compression requires no hydraulic flow to respond to load inputs, providing instantaneous response
  • Performs well in severe, high-speed and cross-country applications
  • Improved heat rejection eliminates “damper fade”
  • Strut is compatible with trailing arm, leading arm, McPherson, and wishbone suspension configurations
  • Significantly longer life than traditional shock absorbers

“All of these benefits ultimately lead to significantly reduced vehicle roll and pitch, and increased vehicle stability and handling,” stated Drew Lippert, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Horstman Incorporated.

“For nearly 100 years, Horstman has been dedicated to using technological advances to significantly improve the safety and comfort of vehicle operators. To this end, Horstman has partnered with Spartan to bring this life saving technology to market.”

The CFS is also suited to vehicle upgrades for original designs by replacing the shock absorbers. CFS can operate as a bolt-on suspension upgrade alongside a traditional spring, or in a stand-alone configuration. Units can be supplied with a variety of end fixtures depending on the suspension geometry, as well as an optional Ride Height Control System to expand vehicle capability, states the news release.

After-the-sale support provided by Spartan includes the following:

  • Customer support: superior after the sale service provided by over 585 authorized Spartan service providers
  • Customer service: the best Roadside Assistance program provided in partnership with Good Sam and their network of over 40,000 mobile service providers

Details

Spartan Chassis Inc.

Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a world-class leader in the engineering, manufacturing, and marketing of chassis and aftermarket parts for emergency-response, recreational vehicle, defense, and specialty vehicles.

End users recognize and request the Spartan Chassis brand, which consistently delivers superior performance, exceptional safety ratings and innovations which distinguish us from the competition.

Spartan Chassis, Inc. is a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc.

Website: spartanchassis.com

Spartan Motors, Inc.

Spartan Motors, Inc. designs, engineers, and manufactures specialty chassis, specialty vehicles, truck bodies, and aftermarket parts for the recreational vehicle, emergency response, government services, defense, and delivery and service markets.

The company’s brand names—Spartan Chassis, Spartan ERV, and Utilimaster—are known for quality, performance, service, and first-to-market innovation.

The company employs approximately 1,700 associates at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Indiana, Florida, and Texas. Spartan reported sales of $426 million in 2011 and is focused on becoming a global leader in the design, engineering, and manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis.

Website: spartanmotors.com

Horstman, Inc.

Horstman, Inc. designs, engineers and manufactures specialty suspension systems for a wide range of markets. Horstman has been known for its development of high performance suspension technologies worldwide since 1913.

With facilities, in Michigan, Louisiana, Toronto, and the United Kingdom, Horstman is truly a global supplier of mobility solutions.

Website: horstmaninc.com

Worth Pondering…

We aim above the mark to hit the mark.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

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