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The global recreational vehicle market size was valued at USD 47.47 billion in 2022. The market is projected to grow from USD 48.26 billion in 2023 to USD 63.65 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 4.03% during the forecast period.
Recreational Vehicles (RVs) are portable units mounted on chassis and wheels. RVs are mainly considered into two main categories, motorhomes and trailers. Motorhomes are equipped with motive power, while campers are towed using another vehicle. Some regions often use these vehicles for outdoor activities and temporary residential purposes.
A rapid rise in recreational activities and increased camper sites in major regions, such as North America and Europe, led to the rise in adoption of recreational vehicles in these regions. This has influenced the popularity of RVs in areas with less penetration such as Asia Pacific and the Middle East regions. The rise of electrification in the automotive industry has led to the development of electric RVs. Thus, the rising adoption of electrification technology in RVs is expected to fuel the market growth during the forecast period.
Increase in RV Orders Owing to Rise in Transportation and Tourism Activities During the Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic significantly disrupted every industry vertical and automobile manufacturer; however, these vehicles witnessed great demand during this period. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic immensely impacted the tourism industry worldwide. This situation increased the sales of these vehicles in the market since the populace switched toward an alternative source for tourism and outdoor activities.
The demand for RVs increased during the pandemic as people still wanted to leave their homes and experience the outdoors or other places while maintaining social distance. RV travel emerged as an alternative way to enjoy the outdoors and take domestic vacations.
According to the RV Industry Association's December 2021 survey, total RV shipments for 2021 accounted for 600,240 wholesale shipments, exceeding the 2017 total of 504,599 shipments by 19%. Total RV shipments of 2021 increased up to 39.5% over the RV units shipped in 2020. Towable RVs witnessed a higher demand throughout 2020 and 2021. Motorhome sales were up 37.8% compared to 2020, with 56,212 units. Park Model RV was up 5.7% compared to 2020, with 3,923 units shipped.
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Surging Electrification of RVs to Fuel the Market Growth
The trend of electrification in the automotive industry is fueled by many known factors that indirectly and directly aid in adopting electric vehicles worldwide. Moreover, electrification also penetrated this market. For instance, in January 2022, Winnebago Industries launched e-RV, the first all-electric zero-emission motorhome. The e-RV is designed to provide enhanced efficiency, comfort, and functionality. An 86-kwh battery pack powers the electric RV to offer a 125-mile range and features a marine-grade refrigerator, slide-out induction cooktop, a sink, toilet, and detachable shower head.
The development of newer electrification technologies, such as Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) and Vehicle-to-Home (V2H), drives the demand for enhanced infrastructure to support these new technologies and electric vehicles on the road. Thus, the growing trend of electrification and suitable infrastructure for electric vehicles is expected to influence the recreational vehicle market growth.
Growing Number of Active Campers and Recreational Activities to Drive Market Expansion
Recreational Vehicle (RV) is designed as temporary accommodation and is most commonly used for camping, season use, recreation, and traveling. The rising trend of outings or traveling on weekends with large passenger groups to get relaxation from daily routine is surging the demand. In recent years, this industry has witnessed an upsurge in sales, demand, usage, rental, and ownership.
The growing demand for road trips as a getaway from quarantine, the rising number of active campers, and the rapidly increasing demand for comfortable travel & accommodation of large passenger groups propelled the need for RVs. The post-lockdown period witnessed an upsurge in the number of first-time RV buyers.
Rapid Expansion of the Tourism Industry to Surge the Demand for RVs
The rising tourism industry, supported by favorable government policies, is a potential growth engine, boosting market growth and consumption. In turn, the growing market could expand employment and augment the fiscal revenues of local governments, helping achieve economic development. The increasing culture of motorhomes and the developing integration of campsites and scenic spots are booming the demand for RVs in countries such as China, Germany, the U.S., the U.K., and Australia.
Supportive government policies to strengthen this industry and tourism are anticipated to propel market growth. For instance, in May 2022, the Australian government announced several initiatives from the Caravan Industry Association of Australia’s federal policy agenda, including investment of USD 10 million to support caravan parks to upgrade their infrastructure. The government also allocated USD 20 million to support USD 40 million private investment to adopt & scale new technologies in Australian RV manufacturing. Thus, these few factors are expected to fuel the market growth.
Environmental Concerns & Stringent Government Regulations to Hamper Industry Growth
International agreements to curb carbon dioxide emissions and environmental regulations about fuel efficiency may hamper this industry. Several environmental regulatory proposals include increased fuel tax, which is expected to increase transportation costs and adversely affect RV demand. Further, hybrid-electric engines have the potential to offset increased environmental regulations concerning fuel efficiency, but commercially viable options are not yet available in the RV space.
High initial & maintenance cost is another factor restraining the market growth of RV. The use of high-quality materials and innovative design for vehicle customization adds up to an RV's overall cost. Moreover, additional expenses, including insurance, fuel, parking, and maintenance, challenge the demand for RVs. These few factors might hinder product adoption in the early stages of the forecast period
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Ease of Maintenance and Low Cost of Towable RVs to Fuel the Market Growth
Based on type, the market is segmented into Class A, Class B, Class C, and towable.
The towable segment is expected to dominate the market due to the high penetration of trailers and camper trailers mainly due to these segments' cost-effective and sustainable features. The towable segment offers a wide range of product portfolio offering flexible pricing for consumers over motorhomes. Additionally, towable RVs such as fifth wheelers, trailers, and campers do not require any motive power as it can be attached to any secondary vehicle making it highly mobile. Moreover, the lower cost of maintenance associated with trailers has led to higher adoption of towable.
The class B segment will likely experience a higher adoption rate and is expected to lead the recreational vehicle growth within this segment. The greater mobility benefits offered compared to traditional RVs and lower cost compared to class A and class C aid the class B segment expansion. Additionally, class B motorhomes provide higher fuel efficiency and lower maintenance cost than other motorhomes. These reasons are expected to favor the adoption rate of class B RVs during the forecast period.
High Vehicle Cost of Motorized Propulsion Type Boosted Demand for Non-motorized RVs Due to Consumer-friendly Pricing
Based on propulsion type, the market is segmented into motorized and non-motorized.
The non-motorized segment is expected to dominate the recreational vehicle market share due to the growing adoption of trailers, fifth wheelers, and camper trailers due to its low cost and ease of maintenance. Additionally, non-motorized RV buyers do not have to worry about fuel efficiency as it does not integrate engines and is purely towed using a secondary vehicle. Thus, these few factors led to shifting of consumer preference toward non-motorized vehicles.
The motorized segment will likely experience greater adoption rate due to the rising popularity of campervans and other motorized vehicles such as class A, class B, and class C. Furthermore, the growing adoption of camping sites in North America and Europe has led to the higher popularity of motorized vehicles.
Growing Popularity of Recreational Activities and On-road Touring Fuels the Personal Use Segment Growth
Based on application, the market is divided into commercial use and personal use.
The personal use segment is expected to hold the major market share during the estimated period due to its massive outdoor touring applications, including camping sites, transportation, and road trips, and witnessed higher demand during COVID-19 and post-pandemic. These factors have led to higher demand for ownership of recreational vehicles globally.
The commercial use segment is predicted to grow exponentially due to ease of accessibility. The growth is predicted due to consumers' rising shift toward recreational vehicle rental services due to the greater cost of maintenance associated with ownership of RVs. Due to growing fuel prices and RV costs, less frequent travelers and tourists prefer renting RVs over owning it. Thus, these few factors are expected to fuel the commercial use segment as more and more RV rental services emerge.
North America Recreational Vehicle Market Size, 2022 (USD Billion)
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During the forecast period, North America dominated the market share, owing to the region's higher operational rate of motorhomes and trailers. The North America market was valued at USD 23.58 billion in 2022. The higher popularity of RVs and camper sites in this region provides greater benefits and adoption rates for different RVs. Dominance of the region is attributable to its high popularity among Americans and continued strong growth in outdoor recreational activities in this region.
Europe held the second-largest market share in 2022. The demand is attributed to the growing number of motorhomes and caravans in major regions such as Germany, France, and other parts of Europe due to greater demand for tourism and outdoor recreation activities. Additionally, post-pandemic, the demand for isolated stays and traveling has led to rising adoption of RVs in Europe.
Asia Pacific will likely be an emerging market due to the growing development of camping sites and outdoor activities in Japan, Australia, China, and other Asian countries. However, lack of infrastructure and government policies might produce a lower adoption rate in some countries within the Asia Pacific region.
The rest of the world market is also expected to grow extensively due to the rising popularity of recreational activities in Brazil and neighboring countries.
Technological Advancements and Strategic Pricing are Boosting the Market Growth of Major Players
A few global players lead the global market. Thor Industries is an American RV manufacturer and a leading player in the competitive landscape. The company focuses on producing, researching, developing, and selling new RV vehicles with a broad price range suiting consumer needs. The company’s main growth strategy is acquiring regional and global players within the industry to expand its market presence.
Forest River Inc. is another major player in this market that operates similarly to Thor Industries, with acquisitions as its primary growth strategy in emerging and demanding regions. The company has created a strong customer network in major countries through acquisitions.
An Infographic Representation of Recreational Vehicles (RV) Market
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The market research report provides detailed market analysis and focuses on key aspects of this industry such as leading companies, product types, and leading product applications. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the factors above, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the market's growth in recent years.
CAGR of 4.03% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Billion) & Volume (Units)
By Propulsion Type
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 47.47 billion in 2022 and is projected to reach USD 63.65 billion by 2030.
In 2022, the North American market stood at USD 23.58 billion.
The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.03% and will exhibit steady growth during the forecast period (2023-2030).
The towable segment is expected to be the leading segment during the forecast period.
Thor Industries, Inc., REV Group, and Forest River, Inc. are the leading players in the global market.
North America dominated the market share in 2022.
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