MRAA disappointed in model year change

OAK PARK, Ill. – After 20 years of supporting a change in the model year introduction, the Marine Retailers Association of America (MRAA) finds the lack of industry support cited by Genmar “a very big disappointment,” according to Phil Keeter, MRAA President.

All the surveys and focus groups taken with dealers point to this as one of their top priorities, the association reported. To have new, fresh merchandise in the fall of each year and announce the new model year has always been the goal. Dealers can sell thru the summer season and get top margins without discounting.

Irwin Jacobs’ initiative to change the introduction of new models until September 1st was strongly supported by MRAA’s membership when announced last July. MRAA says it conducted its own survey, which produced the highest response rate that MRAA has ever received, and the results showed 99.4 percent of the dealers were in favor of this change.

“Yesterday’s announcement by Jacobs that Genmar is returning to an earlier model year introduction because of a lack of support by other boat builders is a sad commentary on the ability of the manufacturing community to unite and move forward on making vital decisions that would benefit the dealer and the consumer,” commented MRAA Chairman John Sima.

MRAA encouraged dealers and manufacturers alike to not give up on this initiative and said it will renew its efforts to solicit other members of the manufacturing community to “throw in” with Jacobs on a renewed effort for the 2006 model year.

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