The closure of New Zealand’s borders due to the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020 has precipitated a huge upheaval in the market. Since New Zealanders haven’t been able to indulge their love of international travel, they have taken to touring their own backyard in record numbers. Many Kiwis have decided to put the money they had intended to spend on international travel into the purchase of a new motorhome. This has caused unprecedented demand and put the industry under considerable stress.
“We went from a sluggish market in 2019 to a standstill in early 2020 as we went into lockdown” said SmartRV CEO John Managh. “This time last year, we were discounting in order to get stock moving and free up cash as we prepared for the big recession that economists were predicting“ said John.
As the restrictions were lifted, Kiwis started buying motorhomes at a rate we haven’t seen in the 10 years we’ve been in the importing business. The big spend up on motorhomes as well as building renovations, household goods, cars and much more has stimulated the economy and staved off the predicted recession.
The strong demand for motorhomes over the past year has outstripped supply. Demand, coupled with shortages of components parts such as semiconductors, has significantly restricted the number of motorhomes available. New Zealand dealers are now faced with supply shortages.
Despite careful planning, we actually ran out of stock in April due to strong sales and factory delays. We have new stock in Auckland now and more deliveries over the next few months. While don’t expect to have the same stock level as we had in 2019 so many customers will have to wait to get the motorhome they want.
Unfortunately, we don’t have enough stock to take to the NZMCA Motorhome, Caravan & Leisure Show in Christchurch this weekend. However, we have added a new feature on our website which allows us to quickly update our stock. You can easily see what’s in stock, what’s arriving soon and what’s on order. If you’d prefer to talk to one of the team, just give us a call.