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What is the most reliable Class A 42'+ you would recommend


billb36721

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We are getting ready to purchase a class A 42 feet+ RV for full time RVing, but after reading many customer reviews on various manufactures RVs we are finding it difficult to make the decision. We have been researching this for 2 years by going to different RV shows, visiting RV dealerships and speaking to some folks that own this type of coach.

Should we buy new or preowned?

BTW we have owned 2 class A coaches, but that was back in the 90's.

Our budget is around $ 250K, so Prevost type is not an option.

Thank you in advance for you advice.

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This is always an interesting topic and opinions always vary. However, I think the main stream follows the following list as for as reliability

 

1. Prevost, Newell, Foretravel

2. Newmar, Entegra, Tiffin

3. Winnabego, et al

 

The best buy as far as depreciation goes is in the 2-3 year old coaches, normally half of MSRP or more. Also, some very nice higher end coaches (5-8 yr range) can be found in you budget price point as well. I think the three most important things the look at, especially for full timing are

1. Floor plan

2. Floor plan

3. Floor plan

Good luck in your search, Dan

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I suggest writing out YOUR specifications as to what your wants and needs are. Afterwards, the motorhome will naturally expose itself through process of elimination.

 

Here is how I came about my selection:

 

Under 35 feet

Diesel Cummings

Allison Transmission

Freightliner Chassis

Auto Leveler

Washer Dryer

Towing capacity for a car

Generator

Residential Refrigerator

Satellite TV

Dual Pane Windows

Waste Tank Flush System

Self-contained and fully capable of camping without hookups (3 to 5 days)

Solar power (option)

Total walking access from front to rear of coach with slides in

NO bunks

NO dark cabinets

NO white leather interior

 

 

My Results were: Thor/Tiffin/Forest River; in the end it came down to entry door placement. My wife wanted it behind (mid-coach). Winner THOR

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With your budget of $250,000 you can buy a high quality motorhome if you go used. Check out this site for ideas. Buying new doesn't mean that you won't have any issues. Buying used will save you lots and will also get those 'kinks' out of the way. If you don't like the interior you can renovate it far cheaply than buying new. The important thing is to choose a quality manufacturer. We were extremely satisfied with our Newmar Dutch Star during 8 of our full-timing years. Country Coach is another good quality RV.

 

http://motorhomesoftexas.com/c#/coachesrv/all/default/all/all/all

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Your going to get a whole lot of 'confusing' information on this thread. Simply because we are all some what biased.

 

3 groups to look at. Bus conversions. Diesel pushers. Gas A class.

 

For a budget of $250.000.00 you can find all three types. Pre owned will give you much more bangs for bucks simply because some one else has taken the depreciation hit.

 

For me the keys are knowing where you want to travel and where you want to camp. (Public parks v RV resorts). Then as pointed out already. Floor plan, floor plan and floor plan. If you have 'indoor' hobbies and interests then floor plan becomes even more important. The mechanics of most mororhomes are mostly the same. Just variations on build quality.

 

regards

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1. Floor plan

2. Floor plan

3. Floor plan

 

 

 

I disagree here. Floor plan is super important but you really need to consider some other items too. It's very easy to find a Class A where one axle is overloaded simply by filling the water and fuel tanks and adding a driver and passenger. I would suggest that this would not be a good choice even if the floor plan is perfect.

 

 

Also consider support. You can go to Newmar or Tiffin with a 10 year old coach and work done if needed. I'm sure that any work that's needed can be done by some 3rd party for other coaches. It's still helpful to know if the factory will provide support should it be needed. I don't know if this is a top 3 but it should be considered.

 

 

On the new vs pre-owned you will get more value used, but will be taking some small risk of ending up with a coach with issues. You should be able to get a REALLY nice used coach for $250K. Be aware that we have seen many 1-2 year old coaches being offered for sale at prices close to or even more than what a new one can be had for if you're willing to take delivery from a dealer offering good discounts.

 

 

We're in a similar boat but looking at ~40 feet. We are looking at (In no particular order): Tiffin, Newmar, Monaco, Entegra, Foretravel, Country Coach, Newell (always too much $$ for us),

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Foretravel (U320 as one model to consider. A plus to Foretravel is they have a transmission retarder for braking assist.), Country Coach (Allure, Intrigue, Magna, Affinity. I've always felt that Intrigue was the sweet spot for coach content, and still available with a BIG BLOCK engine, vs Mid Size ISC, ISL or CAT C7/C9. At that price point you can go top dawg with the Affinity.), Beaver (Patriot Thunder or Marquis), Monaco (Executive or Signature, though the Dynasty is a good bang for the buck, and a few years could be found with BIG BLOCK engines.), Newmar (Mountain Aire, King Aire), Travel Supreme, Entegra, Wanderlodge LXI.

 

If you feel you can be comfortable without slides, and many couples feel they can, the a Prevost based Marathon or other manufacturer, are fro sure in your price range. Maybe even a one slide coach too. Same comment about Newell's could also be found in your price range.

 

A few comments in general:

 

>Buy a coach with the biggest engine you can find. In quality 42-44' level (There are some 43' and 44' coaches, that in some states do not require the special Drivers Licenses to drive.) coaches, you will find more weight. So the BIG BLOCK (ISM/ISX, CAT C12 thru C15, Detroit) will provide you with adequate power, and IMO more important, added brake assist with a true Compression Jake Brake, 2 or 3 Stage. (Note the Foretravel utilize a Alisson transmission with Retarder, which is pretty slick too:)!. I kid that it is not about being first up a hill. The added HP/Torque can provide a safety edge with the ability to possibly accelerate out of situation. Reserve power capacity, can provide a safety edge. And due to gearing, and the engines not working as hard, many times you can get the same, or better MPG then a coach with a mid size engine.

 

> Pick your budget range for purchase. Reserve a good cushion to do two things: 1) Bring any mechanical items back up to where they should be. Say hoses, belts, fluid flushes and changes, air cartridges, etc. Having a good baseline to start your experience, is solid peace of mind, and you then know where you are in the maintenance cycle; 2) On the inside. You can easily spend $10-25K +, modifying the inside of a high end coach, to what you two want. Making it your coach. (Cabinets, electronics, flooring, seating, etc.) IMO, a used high quality coach, provides a solid foundation to build off into becoming 'your coach'.

 

> I'll second the idea of getting a list of Must Have's and Nice to Have's. Put them in a spread sheet. As you both inspect a coach, award 1 point for items that are on the lists. We awarded 2 points to the Must Have's, and 1 point to the Nice to Have. And then we each were given up to 5 items, to award up to 5 points to. (For example, I wanted side radiator, air bag leaving, IFS, Tag, and large engine. So I awarded 5 points to these items. My DW wanted a large galley, propane cooktop over induction, heated floors, etc. So she awarded 5 points to the items that mattered the most to her. We'd then merger our two scores together, Excel is your friend, and this allowed us to have a less emotional approach to shopping.

 

> Finally. Drop model years to remain with purchase price and buy the highest quality coach that meets your needs. IMO, quality lasts. Construction, chassis, components, etc.

 

And a caution. On different years and models, sometimes a coach could have a problem. Delamintaion, Micro Checking, Cummins ISL Wrist Pin problems in some years, Cummins ISX Valve Train problem in some years. So when you narrow your hunt down to specific models, research those in more detail, to see if anything really problematic exits:)!

 

At that price point. Be willing to travel to find the coach that meets your needs...

 

Best of luck on your hunt,

Smitty

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