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Old 06-04-2012, 12:41 AM   #1
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How do you rank Class A MHs

If this question has been asked before, please point me to that thread. And, thanks.

If not, here is my question: There are a lot of class A coaches available - both new and used. In trying to determine the "best bang for the buck" - how would you rate the offerings by things like:
A. quality of interior workmanship
B. performance of chassis to engine choice (I understand that this will vary greatly based on the combination purchased. But a good starting place)
C. value - bang for the buck (Yes, I know that the more you spend - typically - the more you get. But, where is the best value)
D. resale value - which coaches "tend" to retain their value best over the long term

I'm sure that there are more issues. But this should get the discussion-juices stirring.

I am NOT interested in making this a "MY COACH IS BETTER THAN YOUR COACH" bashing. I'm sure this has been discussed and the information will be valuable to all.

Example for NEW coaches (not necessarily true. But a start):
1. Provo
2. Newell
3. Newmar
4. Golf Stream
5. etc.
6. etc.
...
12. Winnebago
13. Bounder

Example for USED coaches (not necessarily true. But a start):
1. Provo
2. Newell
3. Newmar
4. Golf Stream
5. etc.
6. etc.
...
12. Winnebago
13. Bounder
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Old 06-04-2012, 01:51 AM   #2
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For us it is the Bounder.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:36 AM   #3
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why dont you ask a simple question instead of a thesis worthy one?

you cant possibly expect to get "objective" answers/lists for such a broad question on such expensive equipment.

The answer is... GO RENT ONE THEN ANOTHER AND THEN ANOTHER.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:47 AM   #4
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Try J R ConsumerRV Reviews and try RV.org. These organizations rate all types and brands of RV by various features. They may not be exacrly what you are looking for and they cost money but they could be quite helpful in your research.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:50 AM   #5
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Money

More money

Stupid money
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Old 06-04-2012, 06:48 AM   #6
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Too complicated for me. As far C vs A on a whole, and A wins hands down (had both). More room, better drivability, better turning radius, better ride, more towing capacity, more convienient. I would never buy another C regardless of cost.

Disclaimer:

That's just our experience and preference. Yours may be different.
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Old 06-04-2012, 07:14 AM   #7
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You need to add Foretravel to the list.

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Old 06-04-2012, 08:04 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just For Fun View Post
If this question has been asked before, please point me to that thread. And, thanks.

If not, here is my question: There are a lot of class A coaches available - both new and used. In trying to determine the "best bang for the buck" - how would you rate the offerings by things like:
A. quality of interior workmanship
B. performance of chassis to engine choice (I understand that this will vary greatly based on the combination purchased. But a good starting place)
C. value - bang for the buck (Yes, I know that the more you spend - typically - the more you get. But, where is the best value)
D. resale value - which coaches "tend" to retain their value best over the long term

I'm sure that there are more issues. But this should get the discussion-juices stirring.

I am NOT interested in making this a "MY COACH IS BETTER THAN YOUR COACH" bashing. I'm sure this has been discussed and the information will be valuable to all.

Example for NEW coaches (not necessarily true. But a start):
1. Provo
2. Newell
3. Newmar
4. Golf Stream
5. etc.
6. etc.
...
12. Winnebago
13. Bounder

Example for USED coaches (not necessarily true. But a start):
1. Provo
2. Newell
3. Newmar
4. Golf Stream
5. etc.
6. etc.
...
12. Winnebago
13. Bounder
It depends on what features you feel you need.

We graduated from tent camping to van camping to a vintage 22ft Class A to a 1996 Safari in 2007. Had no need for slides in an 8.5' wide coach. Still don't.

In '96 this coach listed for about $150K, making it a higher end coach at that time. All solid wood cabinetry, top quality appliances, custom designed chassis later purchased by Monaco. Huge through-coach bays. CAT/Allison combo.

It had 59K miles on it when I bought it for under $40K. Works perfectly for us. See link to photos in my signature below.

Now if you need/want more bells and whistles there are many fine newer coaches to choose from. Just do a thorough pre-inspection yourself and by a good diesel mechanic before pulling the trigger on any unit. You can Google for RV checklists or use this one:

http://home.roadrunner.com/~kwildman/checklist.pdf

Happy hunting.
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Old 06-04-2012, 09:21 AM   #9
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The MSRP (new) tells the whole story.

Jim E
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Old 06-04-2012, 11:40 AM   #10
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Best bang for the buck, is dependent on how you are going to use the rig you buy and whether you buy used or new.

Quality generally follows the dollar, but not always.

Fit the rig to your parameters.

Will you use the rig 20 nights a year or full time?
Are you primarily a camper in the boonies or state parks?
Are you a driver with brief stops in between distant destinations?
Are you a OHV enthusiast and wanting to camp on the beach?
Will you be staying long times in an RV resort?
Are you a mechanical hobbyist?
How many traveling people and pets must be accomodated?
What is your purchase budget?
Will you spend more time and do food preparation in the MH or outdoors.?
Will you do dinners out and simple meals in your galley?
What gear do you want to carry with you?
Do you like Glitz or easy to clean furnishings?

There are more variations and everyone fits a different pattern, so bang for the buck depends on how you will use the rig and the features you desire.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:45 PM   #11
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For us quality started w/a great chassis, well though out with great long term features, that had to drive well. Side radiator, disc brakes, decent steering cut angle, good cargo capacity, large tanks for long dry camp stretches, Class 8 truck components, great maintenance access to mechanicals- very hard to find in one package.
Then, we wanted a quality 'house' w/real wood, not cheap plastic covered particle board cabinetry, nice appointments, and a workable layout.

I think starting w/your own criteria for shopping, completely independent of what you are seeing on dealer lots is the way to discern what will make you happy. Figure out what will make you happy first. Its like dating & marriage. If you start dating randomly, you won't likely find a spouse that's perfect for you. If you start dating only those who otherwise qualify as a spouse, you're way more likely to go the distance. When we met the motorhome that was perfect for us, we knew it, because we knew what we valued most before we shopped.

I suppose first you have to do some research 'shopping' which isn't really aimed at buying. You're just looking to compare what features exist in the real world. Once you have your must-have 'list' then go buy. And don't go sweating the small stuff; if you find yourself doing that you either haven't really identified your core needs, or you are just being a pest.
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Old 06-04-2012, 05:13 PM   #12
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Ranking of Motorhomes

First list is of NEW very high end coaches.....

1. Newell
2, Prevost Conversion (Liberty Coach, Marathon, etc)
3. ForeTravel
4. Travel Supreme
5. Newmar
6. American Tradition

No longer being made, but still up there,,,,

1, Country Coach
2. Alpine Coach
3. Blue Bird Wonderlodge
4. National RV Tradewinds/Pacifica/Islander

Manufacturers still in business.

1. Tiffin
2. Newmar
3. Winnebago/Itasca (But slipping in the ratings)
4. Monaco
5. Thor Manufacturing (Various models)

Used coaches of RV manufacturers no longer producing RVs...

1. National RV (Sea Breeze, Sea View,SurfSide, Dolphin, TropiCal, Tradewinds, Marlin, Carribean, Islander & Pacifica)
2. Bigfoot Industries
3. Alfa (Gold, SeeYa & Founder)
4. Monaco
5. Country Coach

Bottom line, the least expensive coach that satisfies your needs is the best one for you. I know folks woth an entry level Terra/Fiesta by Fleetwood that love them and I know RVrs who had a Country Coach who had much trouble and hated their unit.

So, look at floorplan, equipment, livability, cost, etc. and pick the RV that best fits your needs.

Happy Trails!

Darryl
Just my 2c.
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Old 06-04-2012, 05:28 PM   #13
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Beaver Coaches. Mine is a Marquis.
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Old 06-04-2012, 08:36 PM   #14
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It won't matter cause if are like any of us, your first coach will not be your last. There will always be something you will prefer a little better whether mechanical or design.
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