New Airstream dealership opens in Oregon

New Airstream dealership opens in Oregon

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by Joe Smith, KGW

kgw.com

Posted on June 8, 2010 at 8:59 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 9 at 12:29 PM

MILWAUKIE, Ore. -- We all know it's been a rough road for car dealerships during the recession. Double that for the RV industry.

It's been downhill.

But, there's a sign things are taking a U-turn. A new local dealership just opened for one of the most iconic RV trailers in America - The Airstream.  It's called the "Silver Bullet" because of it's unique aluminum exterior and rounded corners.

Airstream Adventures Northwest held it's Grand Opening Tuesday. The showroom is located at 18203 SE McLoughlin Blvd., in Milwaukie.

'We're walking amongst a bunch of flying clouds our best selling model," said Bob Wheeler, President of Airstream. Wheeler was here to welcome the new dealership owners,  Ted Davis and Parker Johnstone.

"We feel we've certainly seen the bottom in the economy," said Davis.

This is the first Airstream dealership in a very long time.

"Starting in about 2007 we saw a down turn, and that lasted really two years. Starting last summer '09 we started to see a significant recovery," said Wheeler.

He said the company only has a few dealerships and is very careful about where they open new ones. The only other franchise in Oregon is located in Eugene and there is also one location in Washington, in Seattle.

The Airstream was first introduced in 1931. It was built by aircraft designer, Wally Byam.  Much of the production techniques used then are still used today at the company factory in Jackson Center, Ohio.

The cost of a new Airstream in the '30's was $1200. Today the price tag starts at $35,000 and goes up to $110.000.

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