Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes

By: Cameron Officer, Photography by: Cameron Officer


Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes
Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes  Business profile: Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes

MCD checks out Hamilton-based Boothy's Diamond Motorhomes

Boothy’s Diamond Motorhomes has been synonymous with bespoke-built motorhomes for more than a decade now, but the past five months have seen more activity and change than ever within the Hamilton-headquartered manufacturer. "I’ve never seen it so busy as it is now," Boothy’s managing director Richard Booth says.

"We moved into our new premises in October last year, and we’ve been going full-steam-ahead ever since then. We were rapidly outgrowing our old facilities, so we knew we had to move to a bigger site. We’ve got a manufacturing building that is a quarter acre in size here, coupled with a half-acre yard.

"We’re building more caravans than ever though, so we need the space."

Boothy’s is still building its larger Iveco-based motorhomes to order—the high quality, custom-build business remains central to the company’s activities—but volume has increased exponentially thanks to a new agreement with Waikato-based distributor Ebbetts, which is importing Foton vans for two-berth motorhome conversion.

"We have a lot of older customers who have owned their Boothy’s motorhome for many years but are now looking to down-size," Boothy’s storeman and floor manager, Neil Booth, says.

"The Foton vans really fit the bill. They are completely self-contained and feature all the same comfort and convenience gear that bigger motorhomes do; just scaled down accordingly. They’ve already proven very popular and around 90 percent of them are heading to the private market."

Boothy -2

The Fotons (branded as the Foton Adventurer by the importer) take around a week to finish, with 30 having been completed at the time of writing. Richard and Neil have implemented a new manufacturing process for the smaller vehicles, which sees the caravans move to the craftsmen within the workshop rather than have the Boothy’s build team transit between the caravans. The larger Iveco models are still assembled in a dedicated spot, with different team members adding components as the build timetable dictates.

"While the smaller vehicles have seen us adapt the way we manufacture, we still pride ourselves on our attention to detail for both smaller and larger motorhomes," Neil continues. "There is no blueprint for the larger models. If a customer wants cupboard space in the Luton rather than a bed, we can do that for them. If they want a drinks cabinet rather than a shoe locker, no problem. Aside from the usual plumbing and electrical requirements, we can work with a customer to create anything they need."

Richard adds that the company prefers working with long-wheel based Ivecos, as they offer better ride, and naturally, more space.

As the name suggests, Boothy’s Diamond Motorhomes was founded using ‘diamond’-badged Mitsubishi vehicles, but these days, Richard says the Iveco product is second-to-none. The Foton brand will become even more common towards the end of 2017, as Ebbetts will start bringing in Foton trucks for larger motorhome builds.

"I’m one hundred percent confident these larger Foton fit-outs will be comparable with European product," Richard says.

"Foton is a really impressive manufacturer. As the biggest manufacturer of vehicles in China, they’re offering a world-class product. And between ourselves and Ebbetts, we can back the Adventurers up with parts and service."

Neil says that many European distributors suffer from parts availability, but this has been a big area of concentration for Boothy’s.

"It’s one thing to sell motorhomes, but you have to support them, too. Here in the new premises, we have more room for more stock. Generally speaking, we will have any spare part a customer is looking for on-site. If not, we can usually get it here within a working day."

Boothy

Boothy’s Diamond Motorhomes now has 15 full-time staff members (they began with five back in 2002), and while the ground-up build process remains central to the company’s continuing growth, Richard says he is pushing the idea of Boothy’s as a repairer and insurance work specialist too; something they’ve been doing for some time but now have more space to service such vehicles.

"I think the main message for us is that we care about a Boothy’s-built vehicle long after it has left the manufacturing floor. So many of our customers have motorhomes they’ve been running for years, which is testament to how we put our motorhomes together.

"Unlike imported stuff, our motorhomes don’t depreciate quickly, and we can offer continuous parts supply. If any of our customers have a query they can just pick up the phone and talk to the people who built their caravan.

"To me that remains the simplest and best sort of customer service you can get," he says. 

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