I have been doing this since the 70's, this is the worst I have seen it.
Just curious. A question I guess for the old schoolers. Has the boating industry both new and used ever been effected this drastically? Has there ever been a point of "weaning" smaller manufacturers out of the industry in a large clump?
Late 80's or early 90's a 10% luxury tax was put on all new boats prices $100K and up. It hurt or killed a significant number of sportfish boat builders i.e. Jersey , Egg Harbor, Bertram sold out to an Italian firm and many others. Most buyers just bought used boats as the tax only applied to new construction. Cannot remember when it was removed.
I think it was aalso during this period that Brunswick and Genmar started buying up boat manufacturers.
Yes the industry has been hit this hard.....in the great depression.
Obsolete and proud of it
I only go back 15 years, but from everything I've been told by builders and suppliers and dealers, the word "unprecedented" comes to mind.
I am not the official voice of Powerboat, nor anything else for that matter (I am just a freelance writer), but I don't think the high-performance powerboat industry will die. But it will emerge from this looking a whole lot different.
I wonder less about custom builders than I do about production builders. Will floor planning go the way of the dinosaur? Will production boats be, like cars in Europe (not all, but most), something that's built when you order and pay for it? Will they end up going the route of custom boats?
That's my highly subjective take. I don't have answers. Just questions.
T2X is making a good point, and only half joking.
Last edited by Matt Trulio; 04-10-2009 at 09:29 PM.
Probably the worst its ever been....but also happened at a time when more people than ever are into boating and the whole industry is completely established in its ways. In other words, the boating industry had set itself up for a BIG fall.
I've been in the game since 86'. Haven't seen anything like it. However like all bubble markets, they break and rebuild. We can all get freaked out by the media and the general state of things in the world, or we can buckle in and work harder. Personally I don't have a choice. Work harder. Some will stumble down but knowing most of the personalities, they will brush themselves off and get back up. Best of luck to all.
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