Bonjour from Montreal,
We have enjoyed our 2005 Mandalay 40E since 2008. We think it is a fine motorhome, offering many features, advantages and durability for the price. Solid wood cabinet doors and other doors, hydraulic slideouts, fine finish and overall good craftsmanship.
First thing to enquire about if yours is the split windshield model, is whether it has had the "Halo" mod done. You see, in those years, the structure that framed the front windshield was too weak allowing excessive flexing due to frame torsion causing the glass to pop out our crack. Fourwinds, (now Thor) had recalled their coaches to have the front frame reinforced hence the Halo mod.
The next thing to look at is the air intake system from the filter to the turbo. We have heard of many instances where there was a break in the airtightness of parts of the system leading to major engine repair costs due to engine dusting.
Another particularity is the toilet. It is a Tecma brand which has an integrated macerator. Have it looked at is it might be a source of problems.
The third thing I would suggest you look at is the paint. In those years, they (many manufacturers not only FourWinds) had issues with the fiberglass, causing the paint to crack over time.
All of the other systems installed by the manufacturer are the usual brands such as HWH, Dometic, Atwood etc. and you can read up on those in many other areas of this forum.
Bear in mind that Thor had ceased production of the Mandalay line and hence availability of body parts might be uncertain at this time. No idea about product support today as we haven't had to call on them in a few years. However these coaches were built on the Freightliner XC chassis and they will support you big time.
Last thing of mention is that there is a Mandalay club on Yahoo.com which hosts a forum with lots of info for you to read up on.
Gary & Johanne
2005 Mandalay 40E & 26ft Enclosed Car Hauler