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Old 03-03-2007, 07:30 AM   #1
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The absence of a local Monaco Dealer makes me ask the following from members of the Monaco board:

Chassis:

Comments I hear are that the Roadmaster chassis offers great handling, but the awareness of even small road irregularities are pronounced.
Also, a constant steering correction is needed.

Service:

Some dealers that handled Monaco in the past had difficulty with Parts/Service from Monaco.
Is this sour grapes over other real issues, or is this a problem for Monaco?

Commitment:

A buyer makes a committment to a manufacturer when he purchases their product. Do you feel that Monaco has "stepped up" when a serious issue arose on your coach?

It is difficult to evaluate future purchases when active, stocking dealers are not present in your marketing area.

Thanks for your replies in advance, and maybe others will also benefit.
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Old 03-03-2007, 07:30 AM   #2
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The absence of a local Monaco Dealer makes me ask the following from members of the Monaco board:

Chassis:

Comments I hear are that the Roadmaster chassis offers great handling, but the awareness of even small road irregularities are pronounced.
Also, a constant steering correction is needed.

Service:

Some dealers that handled Monaco in the past had difficulty with Parts/Service from Monaco.
Is this sour grapes over other real issues, or is this a problem for Monaco?

Commitment:

A buyer makes a committment to a manufacturer when he purchases their product. Do you feel that Monaco has "stepped up" when a serious issue arose on your coach?

It is difficult to evaluate future purchases when active, stocking dealers are not present in your marketing area.

Thanks for your replies in advance, and maybe others will also benefit.
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Old 03-03-2007, 08:01 AM   #3
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Our Imperial is on the 8 bag chassis and has no handling problems. We had a 2000 Safari Zanzi, also a custom chassis, that was good to drive but the Imperial is a dream by comparison. I can drive it at highways speeds for 8-10 hrs before getting tired. You must consider that they build at least three different chassis so you'd have to be more specific with the handling question

We've had warranty work done both on the road and in their facilities and have had no problems with parts support or their attitude about doing the work.

My opinion of dealer service is they are extremely poor. Tom Raper where we bought our Imperial was absolutely clueless when it came to a big DP and they also count on the customer cowing when they bark. I don't think very many dealer orgs are any different. We've had great service at the service center in IN. and the rallys. They now have three company owened/operated service centers, Harrisburg Or, Wakarusa In, and Wildwood Fl. In Wakarusa we were housed in a hotel while they fixed our bedroom slide!!
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Old 03-03-2007, 08:16 AM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Golden Gopher:
The absence of a local Monaco Dealer makes me ask the following from members of the Monaco board:...........Commitment:
A buyer makes a committment to a manufacturer when he purchases their product. Do you feel that Monaco has "stepped up" when a serious issue arose on your coach?
It is difficultto evaluate future purchases when active, stocking dealers are not present in your marketing area.......... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Golden Gopher, I am curious as to what local Motorhome Dealers are in your marketing area
right now? Do you have a active, stocking NEWMAR dealer near you right now? I think you should see what dealers are nearby you right now and then ask about them specifically if any have a coach line that you are interested in purchasing.

Asking about MONACO, WINNEBAGO, NEWELL, PREVOST, THOR, etc. etc. is like the old can of worms between "which is better - Ford or Chevy"!

If you are considering buying a MONACO, then you could ask the current MONACO owners about their experiance with MONACO and/or their dealer. I have at least three major MONACO dealers near me (DALLAS/Ft.WORTH area) and I have never even been to ONE of them. I have a 2004 TREK that I purchased NEW in California because I got a super price on it. I did have a few issues with it, one of which was my backup monitor went out. I called MONACO customer service and they sent me a new one and a pre-paid box to ship the old one back-NO QUESTIONS ASK - they have been GREAT! If I ever have any MAJOR problems with it I would take it to one of their 3 national on-site factory repair centers. I hope that it is never necessary, but I know it is there if I need to use it.

I personally try to do all of my own repair and maintenence (that is with-in reason & my capabilities), as most dealers, that I have ever used for repair, of any of the many trucks, cars , tractors, boats, and motorhomes I have owned, have screwed up more than they have fixed. I do not mean to imply that there is not some really good dealers, with really good technicians, because there is, but in my experiance - they are few and far between.

I wish you the best of luck with your search and hope you find your next coach won't need any local, active, stocking dealer - AT LEAST NOT OFTEN!! Best to you and yours - Glenn.
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Old 03-03-2007, 01:40 PM   #5
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I'm puzzled with your comment on lack of Monaco dealers. My guess is that they have as many dealers (Monaco, HR, Safari, Beaver) as any other significant Class A manufacturer. I believe they have something like 350 in North America.

The problem may be that most dealers are useless or next to useless when it comes to dealing with other than minor problems. Newmar is no different. Our first MH was a Triple E Commander. The original owners traded for a Pace Arrow since they went full time and wanted more room. They found that to be an error as the dealer was not good and after two years still had outstanding items that were there on delivery. (This Pace had very limited CCC as well.)

They "upgraded" to a Mountain Aire gasser. They found the dealer to be hopeless as well. They had floor problems the dealer could not fix and had to take it all the way to the factory to get the floor replaced. Now, they don't go near the dealer and go to the factory for service at least once a year.

Monaco dealers - likely no different. Monaco factory service centers? Well, when we visited Camp Misery (Wildwood Fl) on Nov 1/05 the next available appointment was in March. Service? That is a joke.

Considered a Tiffin before we bought the Winnie. My wife and I looked at each other and made for the exit when the owner of the dealership bragged about the great Tiffin factory service - said HE even took his coach there for service (900 miles away). Unreal.

The sad truth is that this industry is so immature that one almost wants to scream at times. Frankly, DW and I often feel that if we could roll the clock back we would never have started into this. The only nice aspect has been all the great people we've met. We had a chance to buy a one year old park model on the lot next to ours in FL. We jumped at it and don't regret it. Far fewer problems. People will say - oh but it doesn't move so you should have few problems. Well, it had to move to get here and the first owners had far fewer flaws than we had on our last two MHs when they had only been driven from the factory to the dealer. We have our fingers crossed that our next unit (downsizing now that we have the PM) will be better, but we aren't betting the farm on it.

My advice - If you find a really good dealer (one who can identify and actually fix problems and work on virtually all aspects of a MH) consider yourself lucky and stop right there.
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Old 03-11-2007, 02:15 PM   #6
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My original question re Lack of Monaco Dealers was predicated upon a shopping experience, or lack of one. It would be very informative to be able, in one location, to see several models, colors etc., and be able to test drive to determine a coach that might fit your needs.

Minnesota, with 5 Million people, and specifically, the Twin Cities area does not have a Monaco dealer. That was the reason for my inquiry.
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Old 03-11-2007, 05:01 PM   #7
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Go to the Monaco site and you will find 2 Holiday Rambler and one Safari dealer in Minnesota.
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Old 03-13-2007, 04:33 PM   #8
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I am aware of the HR and Safari dealers, but there are no MONACO dealers. Factory tells me that the two closest are in Iowa, but I can't travel that far to look at them.
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Old 03-13-2007, 05:28 PM   #9
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Golden Gopher:
I am aware of the HR and Safari dealers, but there are no MONACO dealers. Factory tells me that the two closest are in Iowa, but I can't travel that far to look at them. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I don't think there is enough difference in the product lineups to get concerned.

If I wanted a Winnie I'd be prepared to go for either a Winnie or an Itasca. If I wanted Holiday Rambler I'd be prepated to accept a Monaco if there was no HR dealer handy - and likewise an HR instead of a Monaco if no Monaco dealer handy.
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Old 03-15-2007, 05:03 PM   #10
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I will respectfully (and quietly) disagree with dleslie... if a 'Monaco' is what you want, and you find the differences to be significant to you, then you should go for what you want. Are there any major motorhome events anywhere near you? I know the dealership we bought our Beaver from had over 60 Coaches on display in Quartsite, AZ for the past couple of months... so did many, many other brands.

For us, having owned a 1995 Safari and a 2001 Beaver, when we upgraded, we knew we wanted another Beaver (Safari is lovely too... we just fell in love with the woodwork in the Beaver)... but personally I think there are enough differences between all of the different Monaco lines that I understand if you have a preference for one over another.

Good Luck!
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Old 03-15-2007, 07:15 PM   #11
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I also agree with bsavage...
..To me there is enough difference on just the interior of a Monaco and Holiday Rambler that I could not have chosen the HR model ove my own ... but then...everyone has different tastes and Monaco suits my taste more....



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Old 03-16-2007, 06:49 AM   #12
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Well, what can I say? We have a 2006 Ambassador 40PLQ. We've seen the 2006 Knight 40PLQ. We also considered an Endeavor (before the PLQ floorplan won out as best for our needs) and looked at the corresponsing Diplomats (and friends have a Diplomat).

In our view there are NO significant differences whatsoever and we would buy either. I guess DW and I don't view trivial differences as significant. There are small differences between them just to differentiate between the lines. For example the floors and material patterns were different - but one was not better than the other - just different. They have same chassis, engines, transmission, bodies, floorplan, generators, tv's, stoves, fridges, microwaves, surround sound, bu cameras, steps, exterior storage, wiring, etc etc etc.

Frankly, it never even occurred to us that someone would be able to find such significant differences that they could buy a Monaco but not buy the corresponding HR.

Also, if one said that I want A and not B, but since I can't get A nearby I'll go and get C - well, that would mystify me as well.

Don
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Old 03-17-2007, 06:45 AM   #13
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Why is it, that some men pick and choose one identical twin, over the other? Must be some reason!

Also, sometimes firsthand knowledge of a particular dealer may preclude you from using their business as a viable source.

My normal preference is to both shop and purchase from the same place of business. I know that some will shop one place and buy somewhere else. My feeling is that business should be rewarded.

I know that carrying inventory is a significant business expense, but as a consumer I have a need to make a critical buying decision that will be significant to me. I simply would like to be able to shop a particular brand, to see variables within their line, to determine the best fit for my situation and to make a judgement whether we should do business.

Hope this explains my reson for posting originally.
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