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Old 11-22-2019, 06:26 PM   #1
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Newmar to Tiffin

My wife and I are now retired and want to purchase our first coach. We recently toured the Tiffin factory and was very impressed with the quality of Tiffin coaches. Currently, we are considering an Allergro Bus 40IP, however a recent friend of ours purchased a Dutch Star 4018. He feels the Tag axle and Comfort Steering system and insulation makes it a better choice.
So, I have two questions: First, For the Bus owners out here do you feel driving your coach without having a Tag and comfort steering is a big deal especially in strong wind? Second, for the owners of Tiffin coaches who previously owned Newmar why did you switch?

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Old 11-22-2019, 07:31 PM   #2
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Go to Nappanee and inspect the Newmar factory, see what you think and compare the two.

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Old 11-22-2019, 08:16 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum.

You are joining a good group of folks here with good info to share. Tough choice but one that you really can't go wrong on. Obviously i like Tiffins.

Enjoy the adventure!
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Old 11-22-2019, 09:43 PM   #4
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"JERod"....I have a 2019 Dutch Star 4018 which I chose over the Allegro Bus for reasons that were important to me, but may not be for everyone. I previously owned a 2005 Monaco Diplomat 36' and then a 2014 Dutch Star 4018. When I was shopping, after the Diplomat sale, I wanted a few things, including a side radiator, tag axle, IFS, tile floors and a FWS. We narrowed down our search to the Allegro Bus and Dutch Star. Tiffin doesn't offer a tag axle in any of their 40' models, a must on my list. There was a Dutch Star dealer just down the street, so the Dutch Star won out.

Fast forward to 2018.....we purchased our 2014 Dutch Star off the lot and now wanted to purchase another. This time we knew we wanted another Dutch Star for several reasons. The tag axle was still a big deal. Since my 2014 purchase, Newmar had added their STAR chassis which was another 3000 pounds of chassis steel to stiffen the frame for their new FWS and ALL tile coach, including the slides. I also became a huge fan of the Comfort Drive system. You'll find many on here, who don't have it, that will tell you its not a big deal, but Newell and Newmar think so. So do I.

I was also tired of all the coaches with a lot of black paint or really dark colors. Newmar allowed me to pick any color, from all the colors they use, for a $1500.00 up charge. You can't change the theme, but you can mix and match any color. With Newmar, they allow a LOT of customization. I had cabinets enlarged, windows changed, wiring added and several other items changed. They don't do it for free, but it's nice to have a lot of your specific custom items added at a coach in this price range. I know a recent buyer had over 35 "specials". A lot of those were items like 110 volt utlets and USB ports added in key areas. They also offer a Spartan or Freightliner chassis.

Okay, with that said, a good friend, an Allegro Bus owner, recently went looking for a newer Bus. He was shopping for a 40' Allegro Bus in a 2016 -2017 year model. After some searching, he found that La Mesa RV had a left over 2019 Bus, in the model he wanted, in Florida. He made the deal, flew out and drove it home. He told me the purchase price, which was about $19K less than my Dutch Star. He got some things that I would like to have. His came with three A/C's and a 10K generator. Mine only has two and Newmar will not option a third. Mine does well with two, but when you live out west and drive all day in 100+ weather, three A/C's would be nice to catch up. On a camping day, my two A/C's are fine.

His coach also came with the digital controls for all the tanks, lights and systems (Spyder), which Newmar does not offer on the Dutch Star. Air leveling was also included.

Comparing the two, there were a lot of small things one coach had and the other didn't. As an example, both coaches offer the facades along the roof line to hide the the A/C units and other rooftop equipment. On Newmars, the entire roof is a large bowl with a drain at all four corners. Any rain gathers on the roof and runs out the drains. On the Bus, it just runs over the sides like any other coach. On his coach, he has the cassette entry steps, which I think are nicer looking.

So....he has some items I would like to have and I'm sure I have some he would like. Again, the tag axle was important to me. So there were some trade offs. My coach is also about 5K heavier because of the tag and STAR chassis.

I don't think you could go wrong with either coach. A friend recently ordered an Allegro Red at the RV show. He was told that Tiffin would allow some color changes. The special order of my coach color was huge for me, I ordered my coach with all light colors up high. It stays cleaner looking and doesn't absorb the heat.

This is always a tough decision. They both have the same engine, transmission and engine brake. You have a tough decision, but I'm sure one will stand out more than the other.

Good luck!
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:20 PM   #5
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While I never owned a Newmar, it was one of the finalists in the running when we researching. Also I don't own a Bus, but a Phaeton.

All the things Dutch Star Don said were great. The one thing I can add is, that with the floorplan you are considering (IP), it's on Tiffin's PowerGlide Chassis. It's an awesome chassis. Ours rides like it's floating. Also, with that chassis, you get almost 6" more height in your storage bays than you would with the Dutch Star. You'll also get a flat floor, from stem to stern. No step up in the rear/trip hazard like with the Dutch Star.

This (along with a couple other things personal to me) is what made me go with the Tiffin over Newmar.

I would suggest a Newmar Factory tour as well. You can't really compare the build process until you've seen both.

Both are great coaches & you wouldn't go wrong with either.

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Old 11-23-2019, 08:24 AM   #6
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In addition to what's been said, keep in mind that on a 40' coach you will probably lose two storage bays with the addition of a tag axle. On our 40' Power Glide chassis I have never felt a tag was needed as it drives like a dream.
Dan & Ro with two Rescued Boston "Terrorists" Jade & Jewel
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Old 11-23-2019, 11:14 AM   #7
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We are on our third Tiffin. Two phaetons and now our '13 Bus. We have a great dealer 45 minutes from our WI home. We have stayed with Tiffin in part because of the dealer and also because of the way Bob Tiffin has personally addressed our needs. Our current Bus has a tag, our first one. Anyone with a tag will tell you the ride and stability is better, especially in the wind. Two finger control most of the time. As mentioned the Powerglide chassis is a dream to drive. 500 mile days are done with ease. I've driven my sons Newell and although it is a smooth ride, I felt more comfortable and in control in our Bus. The Comfortdrive is a nice feature for some, but on the Newell at least, there was no feedback from the road through the steering wheel.
My son had a 2015 Mountain Aire that was a great trouble free unit. He traded for a '16 model for the passive steering tag and flat floor slide, but he also ended up with over 40 defects that had to go back to the factory three times in the first 15 months. That's when he ordered his '18 Newell. I will say that the Newmar was easier to cool on the hot days and it was quieter inside with the AC's running. I understand that Tiffin has addressed that and the new ones are better insulated. We like our '13 Bus and would not trade for either of the new ones. If we had had a Newmar dealer 40 minutes away, we might be in a Mountain Aire now. Newmar makes a fine coach too. You won't be disappointed with either one. I would encourage you to consider a tag, but I would not want to give up the basement storage for a tag in a 40' model. 43-45' tag coaches are just as easy to maneuver as a 40 non tag, but are more stable with much higher load rating. I never have to be concerned with what I carry, where I carry it or what I tow.
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Old 11-23-2019, 11:35 AM   #8
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While both Newmar and Tiffin are great choices, I would recommend renting a few different RVs first. After that, buy something used that comes close to what you think you might like (based on your rental experience). After a bit of time in your used RV, you will then be in a much better position to pick an RV for the longer haul. Of course, if you have more money than you can spend, completely disregard all of the above.
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Old 11-23-2019, 11:41 AM   #9
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I had a 05 kountry star I bought new and had for 8 yrs and loved it. You can get any replacement parts on line without talking to anyone. It was on a Sparten chassis and was a39 foot. With a 55 degree wheel cut
Very important for tight quarters. Complete wiring diagrams. I now have a Bus which is 40 footer but different wheelbase and harder to maneuver. It has a lot more room inside with longer slides. No wiring diagrams are available.

I liked the KS better for maneuvering and driving was positive. I like the roominess of the Bus but need to be alert while driving. Is a little sluggish . Also placement of switches to your left is dangerous as it takes your eyes away from the front
KS swan's are just dropping eyes to locate.
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Old 11-24-2019, 07:50 PM   #10
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You don't need a tag axle unless the weight of the rear of the coach exceeds what a single axle can handle. The Bus is fine without a tag.

Comfort Drive is a nice feature, but hardly a deal-breaker in my opinion. When you compare any two coaches, there are going to be some differences, some pros and cons. You need to consider the entire package, not 1-2 isolated features.

You may find this article helpful - it's by a guy who was at first skeptical but later decided he really liked Comfort Drive.


Personally, I felt that my non-Comfort Drive American Coach handled as well as what the above article describes. I'm inclined to believe that a well-designed steering and suspension does much of that already, without any extra assist.
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Old 11-24-2019, 09:37 PM   #11
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You might take a look at Entegra. A lot of standard options are included on the Entegra Coach.
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Old 11-25-2019, 07:20 AM   #12
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I have a Newmar now but we have been looking at Tiffin. I like the slide mechanism better on Newmar and the wall and roof construction. However, we like the interior design better in Tiffin and the fact that all are full hardwood whereas some of the Newmar cabinets have wrapped facia. Each have pluses and minuses.
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Old 11-25-2019, 02:04 PM   #13
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I was surprised to hear someone on this thread say that Newmar would not install 3 Air Conditioner/Heat Pumps on his Dutch Star. We have 3 on our Ventana. Go figure...-Paul
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Old 11-25-2019, 11:23 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Nellybelle View Post
Go to Nappanee and inspect the Newmar factory, see what you think and compare the two.
+1 - would go to both factories Newmar / Enterga "only like 33 miles apart" and look at how each is build compared to Tiffin. Also ask the people their for service what they think - would they buy the same make again.

One major thing to think about is where your going to get the service done. A lot of dealers are not that great - so you'll most likely be going to the factory. Tiffin now has a 5 year limit on their service where Newmar / Enterga do not.

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