It was just over 4 years ago in the same month The Small Trailer Enthusiast hit the internet that I posted a story about a deal between Pennsylvania RV dealer Bill Kerola and the Snyder family, owners of Hi-Lo Trailers. Despite plans to have prototypes being built in the winter of 2012, things got sidetracked and put on the backburner. However, things picked up late in 2014 and pictures on the Kerola’s Camper Store Facebook page started to pop up, which resulted in a follow-up post by me here. Throughout this year there have been a few more pictures surface and I finally contacted Bill Kerola to get the latest. “The Hi-Lo project had to get on the back burner but is now very close to reality. I have not prepared any press releases at this time but as you know we have posted some teasers and the new models are close. Very close.”
“I have begun on design of the new website and need the new models for the website and brochures. After initial prototypes I will test camp in them and a production run will start. Some basic important stats are that we are building the exact same lift system that was the original lift system they used, the original front caps (with improved lift struts on the rock guard). I am extremely excited with the way it is progressing.”
“The RV legend of Jim Snyder has been intricate in the new design. Believe it or not Mr. Snyder does all of his CAD work himself! I do plan on the Hi-Lo being offered for purchase in the Spring or sooner of 2016.”
The initial model set to be released is the 16 foot Wanderer and will have two floor plans, the Wanderer RB and the Wanderer SD. Both floorplans will have a rear bed, Fantastic Fan, 3.0 cubic foot 3-way refrigerator, 2-burner stove, propane furnace, 6,000 BTU air conditioner, fresh water tank, water pump, sink, and awning.
“We are projecting a dry weight of 2600 lbs and a tongue weight around 270 lbs, but won’t know for sure until complete and tested”.
One important note is that the Hi-Lo will initially be offered as factory direct only, meaning no dealer network. However, Bill tells me that could change in the future. “As we grow I would consider a distributor network, perhaps a western and southern outlet. It’s sufficient to say that will be a future consideration.”
I’ll be updating this story over the next few months as Bill gets the Hi-Lo website up and running and the prototypes get tested and tweaked. With any luck, I’ll be able to make a trip out to Pennsylvania to get an up close look at one. Hi-Lo is one of the classic trailers that is well known in the industry. Their 55 year run from 1955-2010 left a lasting imprint in the RV industry, and now that the return of Hi-Lo is imminent, it’ll be worth watching their growth and how well they’ll be accepted. With former Hi-Lo exec Jim Snyder part of the process, I believe it should be a well built and thought out product. With the recent wave of reissued and retro travel trailers from the past, the time may be right for Hi-Lo to hit the market again with a fresh set of eyes and a new direction. Stay tuned…
**NOTE**: All pictures courtesy Bill Kerola