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With so many different RV styles, designs, and manufacturers, how do you know who makes a quality rig? In the following article, we’ll take a look at Grand Design RV. We’ll dive into who they are, their history, their product line, and the answer to the question: Who owns Grand Design RV?
Who Is Grand Design RV?
Grand Design RV is a recreational vehicle manufacturer located in Middlebury, Indiana. They build travel trailers, fifth wheels, and toy haulers for entry-level RVers and full-time RVers, and everyone in between.
The manufacturers construct all of their rigs with details such as fully-laminated aluminum walls and slide rooms, wood truss framed roofs, TPO roof coverings, and fully enclosed underbellies, to name a few.
This company is known for producing high-quality products. They put every RV that comes off the line through a 300-point inspection to ensure quality and catch any mistakes before the RV leaves the factory. It’s why they’ve developed such a sterling reputation in the industry.
Who Owns Grand Design RV?
Winnebago Industry, which operates out of Forest City, Iowa, owns Grand Design RV. They purchased the Indiana-based establishment in late 2016 to accelerate their expansion into the towable business.
Many RVers are surprised to find this piece of information out, as it seems to continue to appear as new information on the Grand Design forums. It appears since Grand Design RV holds such a strong presence in the RV industry, most believe it to be its own entity since it runs so smoothly. However, Winnebago Industry made minimal changes and allows Grand Design RV to operate as it did before, due to their stellar reputation.
A Bit About Grand Design’s History
Three industry veterans, Don Clark, Ron Fenech, and Bill Fenech, started Grand Design RV in 2012. They wanted to do things differently in the RV industry. They believed that they had lost touch with the consumer and wanted to reconnect and focus on the customer. In other words, it’s all about creating a better RV-ownership experience!
Both Ron and Bill Fenech have left Grand Design RV (on good terms) to pursue different career paths. Don Clark is still the President and CEO of Grand Design RV.
Grand Design created an experienced workforce that raises the bar regarding quality and customer service. In addition, they currently employ over 1,600 team members and have become the third-largest towable RV Manufacturer in the country.
The RV manufacturer is also approaching their dealer network a little differently. They focus on one dealer within a market to ensure they can build a trusting and long-term relationship. Doing so provides a better customer experience during the sale process.
Based on these values, the company grew dramatically year over year. So much so that Winnebago Industries noticed and purchased them in 2016 for $500 million, plus undisclosed Winnebago shares.
About Winnebago Industries
Winnebago Industries has been in the outdoor lifestyle game since 1958, beginning under the name of Modernistic Industries. The first trailer, the Aljo, rolled off the line in late 1958 and secured Winnebago’s spot in the travel trailer industry.
Since that time, Winnebago has committed to be a leader in manufacturing outdoor lifestyle products. With iconic brands such as Winnebago, Grand Design RV, Chris-Craft, and the recent Newmar, it’s no wonder they’re excelling in the outdoor lifestyle products segment.
Grand Design Product Line
Grand Design RV offers many towables, from bumper pull travel trailers to the ultimate toy hauler. All lines are made in Elkhart, Indiana.
Their units begin with the Transcend and Transcend Xplor brands in the travel trailer lineup. If a mid-level travel trailer is in your budget, the Imagine line is perfect. Offering units under 5,000 lbs makes the Imagine great for medium-duty trucks and SUVs. Last but certainly not least in travel trailers come the Reflection. The Reflection offers the luxury you deserve in a lightweight and easily towable package.
Next up is the fifth wheel product line. The half-ton towable Reflection 150 series is perfect for families who have a short bed half-ton pickup. Like its travel trailer little brother, the Reflection is bound to impress, offering luxury for a great value. The full profile Solitude is designed for extended stays and is a perfect choice for full-timers and weekend warriors alike.
Finally, we can’t forget the toy haulers. The company has multiple options sure to please, such as the Momentum G-Class. The G-Class is a lighter-weight unit that doesn’t sacrifice the quality and functionality the Momentum name is known for. It comes in both travel trailers and 5th wheel models.
The Momentum line and Momentum M-Class are top-of-the-line rigs that offer solitude and luxury with the added benefit of a mobile garage!
All Grand Design Recreational Vehicles offer several distinct floorplans. In other words, you’re sure to find a floorplan you love that meets all your needs.
What Is Grand Design Known For?
Grand Design RV is known for its attention to detail, customer service, and unparalleled quality. In fact, the company has received numerous awards for quality and customer satisfaction.
There are several inspection gates within the manufacturing process that look at fit and finish as well as appearance. This is the final step for other manufacturers, but not Grand Design.
They have a quality assurance program that’s second to none, largely thanks to a significant investment to the tune of $3.5m for a dedicated PDI (Pre-Delivery Inspection) facility. With this system in place, every unit goes through a rigid 300+ point inspection of every system before final approval and shipment to the dealer.
Grand Design RV has a very active community. There are Facebook pages run by owners for every line of RV, with some even for specific floorplans. Grand Design is quite active in the owner-run pages, answering questions and getting customers who need help to the right people.
Grand Design RV has a strong presence on its own social media platforms. On their Facebook and Instagram pages, they share company updates, customer photos, and highlight their ambassadors and influencers.
Additionally, the Grand Design RV community hosts some amazing rallies all over the country.
Now You Know Who Owns Grand Design RV
In conclusion, Winnebago Industries has continued to push the envelope in outdoor lifestyle products, and Grand Design RV is no exception. Under Winnebago Industries’ ownership, this stellar organization continues to set itself apart from other RV manufacturers. We imagine they’ll be a strong name in the RV industry for years to come.
Thank you Rae. I very much enjoyed the article. Happy trails.
Being a grand design imagine owner, I enjoyed the article thoroughly. However there was one discrepancy in the statement about the imagine line. Whether it’s the wording of the sentence or whether you intended the meaning it sounds like the imagine line is composed of units all under 5,000 lbs. My own unit is just over 7,000 lb and I believe there are a few heavier. So just a point of clarification.
I believe that Grand Design makes a quality product and wants to take care of there customers, however I have been without my 2020 momentum for a month, and will have to spend another 100 bucks in fuel and tolls to to get it back, knowing it won’t be fixed. It seems there might be disconnect between there dealers and them, don’t get me wrong, everyone is extremely courteous, but I don’t have a camper. I have 3 grandchildren wanting to go, so now I will get it knowing it will have to go back, if and when the problem gets figured out. We will see,