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Old 05-07-2016, 11:55 AM   #1
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Gasser Class A Questions

Never had a MH but had TT's and diesel Rams. Thinking of going to the gasser MH, 30-32 ft, and Jeep combo and have questions.
Are there ones that tow better than others, along with ride and noise. I know that they are all Ford V-10 after 2006 or so. Have they improved them in the last few years? More power and better trans? Is a Newmar Bay Star going to be much better than a lower price Fleetwood other than interior? I expect to be going 40-45 mph over the passes and getting <10 MPG with 4 door Jeep in tow. Many different MH's out there and really don't want to trust salesmen for this type of info.
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Old 05-07-2016, 12:14 PM   #2
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I have read that the 2016 chassis has better characteristics then prior years. I have an older Workhorse chassis and you can't beat the Alison transmission and big block motor. Not sure if you have considered used but might be worth investigating. The older gas Newmar Mountain Aires are really nice coaches.
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Old 05-07-2016, 12:52 PM   #3
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I have a 2007 Itasca Suncruiser on a 24000 lb chassis with 6 speed Allison and 8.1 GM engine. I pull a 2015 crew cab GMC Canyon with no problems. Average around 7 MPG. It's 36 footer if that helps.
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Old 05-07-2016, 01:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vettenuts View Post
I have read that the 2016 chassis has better characteristics then prior years. I have an older Workhorse chassis and you can't beat the Alison transmission and big block motor. Not sure if you have considered used but might be worth investigating. The older gas Newmar Mountain Aires are really nice coaches.

The 2016 Ford F53 got a 6speed transmission. Not an Allison, but better than the 5speed.
But FWIW, the 2015 V10 was rated at 362HP...the 2016 was dropped to 320HP...this was most probably the computer tuning and is overcome by the new transmission.

If looking at used, the 8.1L Vortex V8 in the Workhorse chassis (available up 'til 2010 in some brands) is a $3,500 perk over the same RV with the 6.8L Ford V10 chassis according to NADA.
That extra 1.3L allows the engine to work best at a lower RPM = better MPG and less noise.

All makers used the same two gas chassis until Workhorse was unavailable. Since about 2010, all full-sized Class A's are on one of the 7 wheelbases Ford F53's offered in GVWR's ranging from 16,000lb -26,000lb.
So...be sure to check the GVWR and GCWR since the shorter models will most probably be on the lighter rated chassis.

Our Workhorse pulls our 37' RV and SUV toad with no problem.
And, our Travel Partners Ford powered Boulder is 38' and pulls their SUV with no problem either.

Best luck
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Old 05-07-2016, 01:09 PM   #5
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I think to answer your question you will have to go drive one of the Newmar Baystars. I think Newmar does a much better job of engineering the MH body to the chassis, which gives it a much better ride. Also the Newmar Baystars are now coming with the 22.5 tires which gives a much better ride. We considered the Fleetwood models when looking for ours and considered the difference in price. In my opinion it was worth spending the extra money to buy something we really loved rather than something that was just ok. At the starting point of what these MH's cost, adding a few thousand more is well worth the cost.

We can count pretty much on 8 mpg as a rule, the worst we have ever got is 6.5 mpg, and the best has been 10 mpg. The newer Ford chassis ride very nice, and in the Newmar's the engine noise is minimal compared to some other brands we drove. Ours tracks well, dose not sway/roll or get pushed around by wind or big trucks.
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Old 05-07-2016, 01:18 PM   #6
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FWIW the other thing to watch is which version of the Ford chassis you are getting for a given motor home. One way to reduce cost is to use a lighter rated chassis. Newmar shortens a heavier chassis for some (all?) of the Baystars. Other folks use a lighter chassis depending on the brand for similar lengths.
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Old 05-07-2016, 01:26 PM   #7
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I think I am in the average 1st time MH owner area. Want to stay short like 30-32 max, just me and the dog. Used will be just fine but low miles. That's why I asked about improvements, like the new 6 speed trans. I know the Workhorse is a more powerful unit and that would be a plus. I really like the Newmar Baystar but it's over my $$$ new and they seem to hold their value used. Just going to take my time and enjoy the search in retirement.
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Old 05-07-2016, 01:45 PM   #8
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I have a 2010 Canyon Star and tow a Jeep Wrangler, it goes down the road just great; getting 7 miles per gallon pulling the Jeep. I did the Cheap Handling Fix on the front and the 5-Star Tune, both of those I would suggest you do. My Newmar must be insulated well because the engine noise is hardly noticeable, even at acceleration.
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Old 05-07-2016, 02:12 PM   #9
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Many of my trips are 2000 miles and more. At 7 MPG and gas price that will add up. But the added room for the Berners while traveling and the ease of set up is a real plus. Are there others that are equal to the Bay Star in quality and smaller length.
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Old 05-07-2016, 02:37 PM   #10
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When I was looking, the three that I considered were Newmar, Tiffin and Winnebago. However, the windshield frame issue with Winnebago eliminated it from my short list. The Newmar coach I did buy was a private sale from the original owners who took meticulous care of it.
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Old 05-07-2016, 05:16 PM   #11
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MPG is more about how slow or fast the driver goes, typically 6-8mpg is what to expect. Can be better or worse depending on speed and conditions

I would honestly suggest like someone else stated drive a few. When I was looking back in 09 I drove ford and workhorse versions (drove one DP as well) sometimes the same model (with the different chassis/engine) and thought the workhorse was a much better until. It wasn't just the Allison 6spd but the chassis was more stable, less affected by wind and dealt with irregular road conditions as well as wind much better.

Power isn't much of a issue... It sucks either way

I also wouldn't get to hung up on length, that is unless there are specific parks/camping areas that you visit which require the shorter length. As we all know some camping areas have length limits especially state and national park camping areas. Get the floorplan that you like!

I was married when I had my last RV, it was a 08 Bounder 38P. Now divorced and want a RV for just myself. My biggest complaints with the RV was difficulty getting gas and also distance between fill ups (usually 6-7mpg and 75 gal tank). Always seemed like less than half of the gas stations I could fit my RV, not just the length (38+ ft plus wrangler unlimited) but also the height doesn't always fit where their pumps are. Those are the reasons I am looking for a DP, it will have to be a few years older vs a gas RV but I figure less stressful when it's time to get fuel
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Old 05-07-2016, 05:22 PM   #12
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In my opinion expecting 10MPG would be kind of a reach even without towing.
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Old 05-07-2016, 07:20 PM   #13
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I think 10mpg is unrealistic with gas. Likely more around 6-8 not towing.

About the only gas rigs I would consider are tiffin or newmar, but I love my diesel truck so much (especially coming down 7% grades), I just can't see doing it in a gas motorhome. If you liked your diesel towing the tt, you better test drive a few gas motor homes to see if you will like it.
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:35 PM   #14
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Make sure the gas coach you're considering has a good wheelbase to coach length ratio. The wheelbase ratio should be well over 50%. Anything less will probably not handle well.

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