Eco-friendly RVs, Suzuki haulers, globally-bound Model A make marks in South Carolina

Jack and Mary Crabtree of Goose Creek plan to drive and ride from New York to Paris as part of World Race 2011 April 14-July 21. Their vehicle is a 1929 Ford Model A Speedster.

Look for “green” travel trailers on sale, a carmaker-sponsored pig pickin’ and a finely-honed Model A set to leave Goose Creek to circle the globe.

Those are a few of the road-wise happenings in South Carolina and Charleston area as of late. Here are more detailed accounts.

Environmental recreation

Seeking to break into the recreational vehicle sales business, a Brunswick, Ga., marine outlet plans to offer eco-friendly models in a three-state region.

Shoreline Marine and RV has added Ever-Lite Travel Trailers, which it notes have ComposiTek Construction that resists, rot, mold and mildew.

According to the dealership, the trailer’s composite materials are lightweight and contain no formaldehyde.

Shoreline Marine and RV serves southern and central Georgia, northern Florida and South Carolina. The dealership said it already has an established inshore and bay boat business.

“Our customers love the outdoors and many of them own RVs in addition to their boats,” said Cleve Bennett, owner of Shoreline Marine and RV. “We chose Ever-Lite because its visual appeal and outstanding quality make it a good fit for our market.”

Middlebury, Ind.-based EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC builds Ever-Lite travel trailers.

The recyclable ComposiTek construction makes the trailers 20 percent, or 1,000 to 1,200 pounds, lighter than ordinary RVs. Bur the lighter weight is accomplished without sacrificing essential equipment and luxury, the dealership said.

Standard features include a power awning, queen-sized pillow-top mattress made from recycled material, high output power fan in the bedroom, convection-microwave oven and a black tank flush.

Meanwhile for every unit sold to the public, EverGreen plants a tree in the customer’s name.

“Shoreline Marine and RV has been all about top quality service to their customers for 24 years,” said Kevin C. Slater, vice president of sales for EverGreen. “They're family owned, and we couldn't be happier that they are moving into the RV market with our products,” he said.

For more information, visit the dealership at or the manufacturer at

Ready or not

While Jack and Mary Crabtree seem to be prepared for their road trip from New York to Paris this year, there’s no doubt their red 1929 Ford Model A Speedster is set to embark. The racer, built from the ground up, even has a rack on the back to hold the suitcase.

In a recent e-mail, Jack Crabtree forwarded the latest photos of the Model A, which he called, “A completed project. I think.”

He quipped, “I said, ‘I Think’ I’m ready. I did not say I was ready.”

According to the event’s website at, the rally will begin April 14 when at least 21 cars will leave the Crowne Plaza Hotel Times Square in New York bound for Paris.

“They will be traveling west, through the United States with memorable stops at Buffalo, Sandusky, Detroit, Warsaw, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City, Dodge City, Denver, Gateway, Salt Lake City and Reno,” the website noted.

On Tuesday, April 26, the participants will arrive in San Francisco. Cars will be loaded on a ship headed to Beijing for the Asia-Europe leg of the race. Drivers and navigators rejoin their cars on June 4 and continue motoring through China, Kazakhstan, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Czech Republic and Switzerland.

On Thursday, July 21, the vehicles are set to arrive in Paris, finishing at the Eiffel Tower.

Water, wheeled Suzuki

Maybe he’s here for the barbecue.

Whatever the case, Suzuki’s top executive in the United States plans to take part in a luncheon Wednesday in Lexington for one of the carmaker’s vendors.

The 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. event is for Southeastern Freight Line’s close to 400 employees. It will be held at the freight line building at 420 Davega Road in Lexington, a suburb of Columbia. Hudson Smokehouse BBQ will be providing the victuals.

Kevin Saito, president of American Suzuki Motor Corp., will be on hand as will Larry Vandiver, head of district operations and sales management. Vandiver will serve as on-site facilitator.

Also expected to attend are dealer staffs from Dick Dyer Suzuki, Columbia Suzuki, Columbia Powersports Center and Jerry’s Marine Service.

In conjunction with the meal, American Suzuki will exhibit automotive, motorcycle and marine products.

Brea, Calif.-based American Suzuki said the event is being held to strengthen its relationship with Southeastern Freight Line.

American Suzuki markets its vehicles in the U.S. through a network of 300 auto dealerships and numerous motorcycle, all-terrain-vehicle and marine distributors in 49 states.