RV Trip Planning Discussions

Go Back   iRV2 Forums > THE OWNER'S CORNER FORUMS > Newmar Owner's Forum
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 10-14-2006, 05:43 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Lug_Nut's Avatar


 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 3,831
Well now having put 4,500 miles on my rig including a vatiety of road and weather conditions, some quite extreme, I have these observations and conclussions.

Comfort Drive, also called Column Drive. Designed and built by TRW and used on all '07 Newmar MADP, EXDP and LADP. The automatic self centering steering with the "Fly By Wire" feeling is backed up with a failsafe conventional steering function.

In theory the CD (Comfort Drive) can re-center the steering in most, if not all conditions, requiring zero wheel input pressure to maintain straight travel.

Well in Iowa and South Dakota on Wednesday this week I hit some extreme wind conditions. The wind was 30 to 35 knots and higher gusts on ocassion. Much of the two days of high wind were encountered from about 2 o'clock. Fuel consumption was real bad at 60 MPH and a little worse at 70 MPH. At 70 MPH the relative wind exceeded 110. I had to straigten the mirrors three times as the wind would cause them to kick out, and they were torqued with a strong bar twice previously. Believe it or not, throughout this the steering ran relatively straight with feather touch control.

I must admit, when I first had the opportunity to drive a CD equipped Essex in Pomona Ca. the feeling was strange. It seemed to have very little or no feedback. Now after some miles the feeling has not changed much. At higher speed the steering wheel slightly increases in touch but the control remains full. Running on an uneven road surface with bumps and ridges causes conventional steering systems to supply what can be abrupt feedback. This type of feedback is normally met with that "knee jerk" driver reaction which increases the event. The CD supplies little or no feedback and maintains heading thoughout the same event. The margin of safety and control seems far better with the CD, particularily if operating at higher speeds.

I feel I've now been spoiled with this steering and would have an issue, or at least a disappointment, to go back to the conventional steering.
__________________

__________________
Peter - Doctor of Mixology
KADB 2013
Lug_Nut is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 10-14-2006, 05:43 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Lug_Nut's Avatar


 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 3,831
Well now having put 4,500 miles on my rig including a vatiety of road and weather conditions, some quite extreme, I have these observations and conclussions.

Comfort Drive, also called Column Drive. Designed and built by TRW and used on all '07 Newmar MADP, EXDP and LADP. The automatic self centering steering with the "Fly By Wire" feeling is backed up with a failsafe conventional steering function.

In theory the CD (Comfort Drive) can re-center the steering in most, if not all conditions, requiring zero wheel input pressure to maintain straight travel.

Well in Iowa and South Dakota on Wednesday this week I hit some extreme wind conditions. The wind was 30 to 35 knots and higher gusts on ocassion. Much of the two days of high wind were encountered from about 2 o'clock. Fuel consumption was real bad at 60 MPH and a little worse at 70 MPH. At 70 MPH the relative wind exceeded 110. I had to straigten the mirrors three times as the wind would cause them to kick out, and they were torqued with a strong bar twice previously. Believe it or not, throughout this the steering ran relatively straight with feather touch control.

I must admit, when I first had the opportunity to drive a CD equipped Essex in Pomona Ca. the feeling was strange. It seemed to have very little or no feedback. Now after some miles the feeling has not changed much. At higher speed the steering wheel slightly increases in touch but the control remains full. Running on an uneven road surface with bumps and ridges causes conventional steering systems to supply what can be abrupt feedback. This type of feedback is normally met with that "knee jerk" driver reaction which increases the event. The CD supplies little or no feedback and maintains heading thoughout the same event. The margin of safety and control seems far better with the CD, particularily if operating at higher speeds.

I feel I've now been spoiled with this steering and would have an issue, or at least a disappointment, to go back to the conventional steering.
__________________

__________________
Peter - Doctor of Mixology
KADB 2013
Lug_Nut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-2006, 06:52 AM   #3
Administrator Emeritus
 
rebelsbeach's Avatar


 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 10,033
GREAT review Peter.... Of all the things on my coach I love the Comfort Drive the most...

No more aching shoulders and sore back for me!!

Thank you TRW,Newmar and MOST of all.... Ken Sherwin!!!
__________________
2019 Grand Design Solitude 380FL fifth wheel
2017 40' Renegade Verona LE LTS (traded)
2018 F150 King Ranch Crew Cab Diesel
rebelsbeach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-2006, 06:56 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
GaryKD's Avatar
 
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Wellington, Florida
Posts: 13,423
CD has my vote. I've only test driven an 07 Essex. About 15 miles total, both in town and interstate highway. I am a believer. A Newmar Exec told me I will have the floor plan I want on the chassis I asked for in 08. It looks like I just need to wait and see what they build. CD was at the top of my requirements list.

Gut feel tells me CD will quickly proliferate to most, if not all Newmar coaches.
__________________
Gary
2005 Newmar KSDP 3910 + GMC ENVOY XUV 37K lbs Moving Down The Road
The Avatar Is Many Times Around The USA
Nobody Knows Your Coach Like Somebody Who Owns One Just Like Yours
GaryKD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-2006, 06:44 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Jetsmania's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pelican Lake Motor Coach Resort, Naples, Florida
Posts: 1,549
Hi! I agree the Comfort Ride on our coach is great. It really comes in handy when trying to make tight moves at the Jets Games! Paul
__________________
2018 King Aire 4553
2018 Cadillac Escalade
Jetsmania is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2006, 05:47 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Lug_Nut's Avatar


 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 3,831
The Comfort Drive does deliver as advertised, and then some. Even in those high cross winds you could take your hands completely off the wheel and it would maintain straight, not that that is a great thing to do in such conditions. Even if hit by a gust, other than a slight body shift, the steering will not change and will recover without steering input.

Like anything new, it takes time to get used to and it will change your comfort level during poor driving conditions in a whole new way. A way you will really like.
__________________
Peter - Doctor of Mixology
KADB 2013
Lug_Nut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2006, 08:34 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Lug_Nut's Avatar


 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 3,831
I should mention another great CD feature, backing. I had to back into two different shops for service, one at the Cummins dealer in Iowa and one in the Allison dealer in Montana. Both were right turning backing meaning I only had the passenger mirror for navigating. Now, I don't have any problem backing anywhere, however the CD makes it a slam-dunk every time. As soon as you see the target path, or door opening in this case, and appear inline, you just take your hands off the steering wheel and it will do the rest. It immediately goes to center and is unaffected by reverse caster and steers straight. This inovation is similar to the introduction of the automatic transmission. Many people today can't drive a manual tranny, tomorrow perhaps a conventional steering will be a challenge for those, preferring Comfort Drive like technology.
__________________
Peter - Doctor of Mixology
KADB 2013
Lug_Nut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2006, 02:45 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
KenSherwin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 640
It would be interesting to find out how many readers currently have Comfort Drive or are expecting delivery soon.
__________________
To the engineer, the world is a toy box full of sub-optimized and feature-poor toys.
KenSherwin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2006, 11:03 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Lug_Nut's Avatar


 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 3,831
Ken, I think there are several regular members right here that have or are getting one with the Comfort Drive on.
__________________
Peter - Doctor of Mixology
KADB 2013
Lug_Nut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2007, 09:01 AM   #10
Administrator Emeritus
 
rebelsbeach's Avatar


 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 10,033
A little late,but here's a picture of how I typically drive my London Aire...One finger and one thumb of each hand,then comfortably seated with back against the back rest...No fighting the wheel,just let the CD do it's job and I watch the road and the scenery!

__________________
2019 Grand Design Solitude 380FL fifth wheel
2017 40' Renegade Verona LE LTS (traded)
2018 F150 King Ranch Crew Cab Diesel
rebelsbeach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2007, 09:05 AM   #11
Administrator Emeritus
 
rebelsbeach's Avatar


 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 10,033
DISCLAIMER...I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS PRACTICE!!

Here's the way I drove most of the way across I-40, from Wilmington,NC to Knoxville,TN...

Look MA....NO HANDS NEEDED!!

The Comfort Drive will hold the coach straight....Now if we just had straight roads!!

__________________
2019 Grand Design Solitude 380FL fifth wheel
2017 40' Renegade Verona LE LTS (traded)
2018 F150 King Ranch Crew Cab Diesel
rebelsbeach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2007, 11:54 AM   #12
Administrator Emeritus
 
rebelsbeach's Avatar


 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Posts: 10,033
Notice these pictures were not taken in the LADB but in the Essex,but the effect and performance is the very same.
__________________
2019 Grand Design Solitude 380FL fifth wheel
2017 40' Renegade Verona LE LTS (traded)
2018 F150 King Ranch Crew Cab Diesel
rebelsbeach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2007, 01:08 PM   #13
Registered User
 
Iron Man's Avatar
 
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,063
I hate to admit it but I used to drive my Essex with one hand. I haven't driven a coach with comfort steer, but since we will be getting a 07 Essex I guess I will. I am a little aprehensive about comfort steer, I like a little resistance and road feel. Our only coach was the 04 Essex and it drove great. I think I would prefer to drive it on the interstate over most cars and trucks I have owned. I watched the video Newmar had on it and reading the previous post I am looking forward to giving it a try. It is probably on of those things you "hated for them to change but if you give it a chance you will love it" situations.
__________________
John, Pam, Nicholas, Aria
NKK 16073L
2007 Essex 4502
2015 GMC Seirra
Iron Man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2007, 01:25 PM   #14
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 12
I have to agree with you guy's. This is only our second DP, but WOW, the CD system is beyond words. Drove today in 35 MPH cross and head winds, No problem ! ! !
__________________

eglen is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help is the Comfort Drive only available thru Newmar? T&G Spartan Motorhome Chassis Forum 9 06-01-2008 06:22 AM
Comfort Drive now expands beyond Newmar cwg Newmar Owner's Forum 23 05-13-2008 02:01 AM
Newmar Owners and Want-to be's, Comfort Drive Lug_Nut Newmar Owner's Forum 10 04-22-2008 07:45 AM
Comfort Drive JJ Simba05 FLSTCI02 Newmar Owner's Forum 24 11-28-2007 10:06 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:30 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×