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Old 07-09-2010, 03:58 PM   #29
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:00 PM   #30
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:05 PM   #31
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Many of those are no longer in business ...and some are totally new companies with the same name so only time will tell with them... Prevost is not necessarily a motorhome mfg'er as many converters use a Prevost shell. That said, and ignoring those no longer in business, my list for new coaches would be:

Newell
Foretravel
Winnebago/Itasca
Tiffin
Newmar

If you want to include used/extinct mfg'ers, I would add American, Country Coach, and Monaco
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Old 07-09-2010, 09:23 PM   #32
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Best can mean many different things

Batman you need to define what you mean a little more clearly. Do you mean all motor homes, class A, C, super C, B and so on? Are you looking for the best quality used motor home? Best quality new? And so on. Plus some makers have a huge range. Meaning, is a bottom of the line Newmar in there with the top of their line? Best for the least amount of money? If you are just looking for the best five in overall quality over the last 10 years of any style motor home this would be my list. I am defining quality as engineering, component quality, handling, workmanship, value, and reliability. I am only including production style rigs and not limited production ones like Liberty, Newell, Marathon, and so on.
1. Lazydaze
2. Born Free
3. Foretravel
4. Country Coach
5. Dynamax
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Old 07-17-2010, 12:49 AM   #33
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Lets face it. For what we pay for these things they are all junk. So just relax and enjoy
Hah! I couldn't agree more.

I think Newell would be at the top of the list for me, if price were of no object! There's just no better.

I've come to find every manufacturer has their strengths and weaknesses. As an example, I find the paint jobs on the Newmars (mine included) to be subpar - sidewall seams, etc. and I find Monaco to have better (if not the best in the "normal" RV market) paint. On the other hand, I find the cabinetry, fit, finish and little touches to be above average in my Newmar.

I suffer from OCPD, so I don't find anything these days to be "of quality" by my standards.

Irwin said it best. Accept it and enjoy.
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:11 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Batman_777 View Post
Along with another thread asking about top quality 5th Wheel RVs, how about the top 10 Quality Motorhomes?

Which of the below would you pick as the top 5? Any others not mentioned? Some are manufactures, some are makes and some models. I think of manufacture as say GM, make Pontiac, model Firebird

Prevost
Newell
Beaver
Monaco
Travel Supreme
Country Coach
American Eagle
Newmar
Tiffin
Fleetwood
Gulf Stream
Damon
Thor
Winnebago
Coleman
Coachmen
Holiday Rambler
Safari
Georgie Boy
Dutchmen
Itasca
First of all, I have not even seen, up close and personal, 1/2 of these coaches, let alone ridden/driven/owned them. I suspect that most of the forum members can only claim to have owned a couple of brands. Most opinions, positive or negative, are formed by what we read in the forums or by conversations, etc. All anecdotal. And biased.

I have a copy of the ratings by an independent company (RV Consumers Group) which rates literally thousands of RVs on 3 metrics: reliability, value and highway control and then gives a Star Rating (1-5 Stars) to each and every model/year rated.

First observation. Specific models DO matter. Examples: Monoco Executive with 3.5 stars and Monoco Camelot with 1 Star or Newmar Dutch Star, 4 stars, and Newmar Kountry Star, 1.5 stars. These ratings can vary widely by year and floorplan.

Here are the only 5 star motorhomes under this system:

Born Free
Coach House
Lazy Daze

No Class A's got 5 stars. And, not every Born Free, Coach House or Lazy Daze got a 5 star rating -- just some years and models.

Looking only at Class A's with 4.5 stars, we get:

Country Coach
Foretravel

That's it for the 4.5 stars. Again, not every Country Coach model got 4.5 stars. Some models/years got as little as 1.5 stars. Ditto for Foretravel.

Then there are lots of MH's that have at least one model/year with a 3.5 or 4 star rating, including most of those on the OP's list.

But someone said it best: very few, if any, can be said to really put out a high quality product, given the money paid. People are outraged if they find any flaw in a $40,000 automobile and have to return to the dealer for minor warranty work. We accept multiple punch list items on a $300,000 coach like it is "industry standard."

The RV Consumer Group ratings are not, of course, perfect but they are a good starting point for semi-objective ratings.
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Old 07-17-2010, 06:48 AM   #35
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Some other technical defects in the list...
- Damon and Dutchman are divisions of Thor
- American Eagle is a brand of American Coach, which itself is a division of Fleetwood.
-Beaver, Holiday Rambler and Safari are brands within the Monaco company
-Winnebago & Itasca are the same company
- Coachman is a division/brand of Forest River, who is missing form the list

I can't think of a meaningful answer to the question in any case. Ask about "most luxurious" or "most reliable" or "best customer service" and maybe I could give an opinion, but just "best" is beyond me.
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Old 07-20-2010, 06:52 PM   #36
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I would start by defining what it is that you think you are buying.

1. You are buying a business relationship with someone that has sold you some stuff that they feel will work well in this configuration over the years. How do they know this? How many time has someone said, yes that is a great new engine but it is uh..new?

Are the applicances in your coach top of the line, are they overly expensive for what you are going to purchase? Who sells coaches with top quality parts and appliances that have consistently proven to hold up over time.

Who are you going to do business with that will weather this economic storm without having to sell off their inventory to someone who won't service it well.

How long have their employees been on the job, how does management run things.

You are buying a moving house. They all use their versio of Maytag, they all use a Chevy or a Ford, yes I know diesel is in there but you get the point.

I purchased my coach used from Roy's RV up in Marysville, WA. I give the salesman about a 3 out of 5 for being straight with me...no big surprise there. I give their service department a 10 out of 10 for taking care of our coach. They honored the extended warranty they sold me and accomodated us as full-timers.

No such thing as best coach built. I think Winnie has been in business a long time and provides great value but then my gas Itasca does not need to be a diesel to get across puget sound. I also don't need a 38 foot motorhome cause it would require a diesel to carry a chassis that big...no you are buying the service after.

How proprietary is the motorhome construction? Can you interchange parts. Our Itasca falls short there because Winnie makes so much of their own stuff.

Sorry for the rant, but this was a wide open question.
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Old 07-21-2010, 02:29 PM   #37
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Come on folks, everyone knows what quality is. If MSRP is $500k, you can't get that quality for $100K. If MSRP is $1,000K, you can't get that quality for $500K. It has nothing to do with need, if they are now belly-up, or price range. I do agree that Prevost should not be included. However, Marathon should be.

Jim
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Old 07-21-2010, 02:45 PM   #38
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Thanks for the responses.. They are all good and help everyone
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Old 07-21-2010, 04:53 PM   #39
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Come on folks, everyone knows what quality is. If MSRP is $500k, you can't get that quality for $100K. If MSRP is $1,000K, you can't get that quality for $500K. It has nothing to do with need, if they are now belly-up, or price range. I do agree that Prevost should not be included. However, Marathon should be.

Jim
I don't know what that means. Most people need a better resolution than an order of magnitude in MSRP.
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Old 07-21-2010, 05:12 PM   #40
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Generally speaking, you get what you pay for. A 2007 Itasca Ellipse 40FD is not in the same league as a Country Coach Affinity, Monaco Signature or Marathon Prevost. And, I'm talking quality. By the same token, I'm not bad mouthing an Itasca.

Jim
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Old 07-25-2010, 09:57 AM   #41
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Thumbs down RV industry quality

I think the only reasonable way to answer that is to see who offers the longest 100% Bumper to Bumper warranty.

If they only offer 12 months then they really don't care about real quality because they never have to stand behind what they sell.

If you had a choice of cars would you think the one with a 5 year 50,000 mile B2B is better than one with 3 year 36,000 mile? or how about 12 month 12,000 drivetrain only?

You do understand B2B coverage has essentially NO exclusions other than tires and possibly brake pads.
I have had burned out light bulbs replaced at 42,000 miles.

When RV manufacturers don't even have enough confidence in their own product to offer 100% coverage as an extra cost option, they are prooving they know their quality stinks.

Extended warrantees are often a joke. I was offered a $500 deductible 4 year plan that after all the exceptions, only covered the generator for an additional 1 year past its mfg warranty and the refrig for 3 past the warranty from its mfg.
They wanted $655 for this "coverage".

Quality in the RV industry is where Quality was in Detroit in 1965.
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Old 07-25-2010, 10:39 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by Tireman9 View Post
I think the only reasonable way to answer that is to see who offers the longest 100% Bumper to Bumper warranty.

If they only offer 12 months then they really don't care about real quality because they never have to stand behind what they sell.

If you had a choice of cars would you think the one with a 5 year 50,000 mile B2B is better than one with 3 year 36,000 mile? or how about 12 month 12,000 drivetrain only?

You do understand B2B coverage has essentially NO exclusions other than tires and possibly brake pads.
I have had burned out light bulbs replaced at 42,000 miles.

When RV manufacturers don't even have enough confidence in their own product to offer 100% coverage as an extra cost option, they are prooving they know their quality stinks.

Extended warrantees are often a joke. I was offered a $500 deductible 4 year plan that after all the exceptions, only covered the generator for an additional 1 year past its mfg warranty and the refrig for 3 past the warranty from its mfg.
They wanted $655 for this "coverage".

Quality in the RV industry is where Quality was in Detroit in 1965.
Couldn't disagree more. Long warranties could be an indication that the company EXPECTS its product to fail more often and is forced, by the market, to extend the warranty in order to get sales. Yes, they could be a statement that the company stands behind the product (e.g. Fantastik fans).

But counterexamples all over the place. The early Hyundai's had a bad repair record (check Consumer Reports) and offered 10 year 100,000 mile warranties while clearly well built cars from Lexus, Honda and Toyota were offering no more than 4 year warranties. Hyundai couldn't sell those cares without such a warranty. The very example you cited from the 60's disproves your point. During the 60's and early 70's all US carmakers had 5/50K B2B warranties but the cars were not quality built by any standard. (Which is why the foreign market share has gone from nonexistant to more than 50% of sales). In fact, the 5/50 warranties were costing them so much (due to poor quality build) that they had to drop them all down to 3/36K warranties. US cars build quality has improved over the last 30 years but warranty has decreased -- the opposite of your hypothesis.

I have a drawer full of broken/worthless consumer products with "lifetime" warranties that by no means are quality products.

High end consumer electronics (LCD's, plasmas, etc.) are among the most reliable products made and even the most expensive only have a standard 1 year warranty.

Warranties are more about marketing than a measure of quality.
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