In 2010 Geist importation into Australia is at a crossroads. If a new importer takes on the product, and there are several options here, then some spectacular new vans and possibly motorhomes could come into the Australian market towards the end of 2010. The only problem is, will the factory produce less quantity than it is currently requiring for the wholesaler to buy, to accommodate this. Even though the RV industry in Australia is going very well, a minimum order of 1,000 units per year over the UK and Australia may be outside what is feasible to sell. As a premium product, the Geist just doesn’t cut it in the budget market arena and hence the volume is unlikely to move. Will the factory consider a flat pack unit to be shipped and assembled within Australia like some of Australia’s most popular brands are now doing? It certainly would force the RVMAA lobby group to shed some of their own members off if they were to go up against the new Geist brand then. Lets just say that there are many very reputable people within Australia who would love to go this way. It is now in the hands of the factory in Germany. Don’t expect many changes until at least mid 2010 though as this would be a major investment to tool a factory in Australia to accommodate the Geist brand. The UK is focusing on motorhomes this year and don’t rule out some hitting Australian shores. A lot of interest remains with the Phantom range. Those people wanting a NEW Geist Phantom Motorhome in Australia in 2010 should let me know via email, firstname.lastname@example.org . I am told the door is now on the other side to comply happily with the ADR’s in Australia instead of special approvals. Prices have not been released as yet.
Most parts for existing Geist stock are readily available within 1-2 weeks now through our supplier network at www.geistowners.com . Any one having problems with insurance should consider either changing to CIL or AAMI who I believe are supporting the brand. Readily available parts are always the issue with insurance premiums rising or lowering. All Geist owners should inform their insurance companies of the new availability of parts within Australia. Feel free to quote the email@example.com email address to insurance companies who doubt the availability.
The www.geistowners.com membership continues to grow and with your funds we are starting to make some inroads to securing the brand again within Australia. So far in our first 6 months we have been able to:
1. Convince businesses in most states to start bringing in Geist parts to Australia.
2. Help hold a reasonable price at the auctions in Sydney and Brisbane.
3. Encourage new owners and support their finding of parts.
4. Represent the members to the Dept. Transport & Roads (Federal) – Ongoing with the coupling
5. Organise FREE Geist Gatherings (1st one in March 2010)
6. Link owners for emotional and physical support.
7. Join members with repairers in breakdown situations
8. Provide ongoing information to members regularly.
9. Administrate the forum for all Geist Owners.
Still to come in 2010 we hope to:
1. Establish an importer in Australia.
2. Provide more information to media on Geist.
3. Talk further with Geist UK and the factory on new product and the future.
4. Provide at least two GG’s (Geist Gatherings) in Australia
5. Create a comprehensive Geist manual for Australia.
6. Build the Geist service centre network.
7. Create a new Knowledge Centre for members.
What we need from you.
Just be a www.geistowners.com member and support the businesses around Australia who bring in your parts. By doing all this we make the interest for an importer or re-assembler to re-establish themselves in Australia a likelihood. If we walk away, so does the Geist brand and your investment in your van or motorhome.The Recreational Vehicle Manufacturers Association of Australia (RVMAA) would love us to walk away as their lobby group pushes the import & safety fear card onto the public and the Australian government. As owners we know the quality of the product we tow and the safety it has over many RVMAA members vans, but does the Australian public? It seems the baffle them with B**l S**t method still works on some overwhelmed buyers.
Support www.geistowners.com and help fight to keep Geist vans on the road. Donations can also be made to aid the fight and travel to the UK and Germany for further discussions when the timing is right.
Catch you on the track.
Peter Treasure (GeistRunner)