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Old 02-19-2015, 08:37 AM   #1
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XCS Chassis vs Maxum XCL Chassis

Freightliner XCS Chassis vs Maxum® Freightliner® XCL Chassis

I am looking at one of two different models of motor homes, built by the same manufacturer but on different chassis. What difference in driving and handling characteristics could one expect between these two chassis. The two motor homes are with three feet of length difference and I realize the weight and height of the two difference between the motor homes may make more difference than the chassis would.

The motor home manufacturer had no input other than to send me to Freightliner, who then sent me to their web pages for to look at the build difference, (which does not address in layman's terminology my general question).

Freightliner XCS Chassis vs Maxum® Freightliner® XCL Chassis
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:44 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceratto's Grotto View Post
Freightliner XCS Chassis vs Maxum® Freightliner® XCL Chassis

I am looking at one of two different models of motor homes, built by the same manufacturer but on different chassis. What difference in driving and handling characteristics could one expect between these two chassis. The two motor homes are with three feet of length difference and I realize the weight and height of the two difference between the motor homes may make more difference than the chassis would.

The motor home manufacturer had no input other than to send me to Freightliner, who then sent me to their web pages for to look at the build difference, (which does not address in layman's terminology my general question).

Freightliner XCS Chassis vs Maxum® Freightliner® XCL Chassis
could you put the manufact. and sizes ??
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Old 02-19-2015, 10:24 AM   #3
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The Winnebago Journey 40U (Maxum chassis)
The Winnebago Forza 36G (XCS chassis)
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Old 02-19-2015, 12:13 PM   #4
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The Journey previously was the entry-level Winnie DP, and the Tour was the high-end. Winnie now has three DP levels, with the Forza the new entry-level, which is more comparable in size and weight to DPs of 10+ years ago. You are really trying to compare two entirely different coaches, apples to oranges, and the chassis differences are almost insignificant compared to the size, features and amenities of the coach above.

The Journey has a much more substantial chassis, is 10,000 lbs heavier, larger engine, more substantial trans, and much higher appointments inside, and much larger towing capacity. Both have an exhaust brake(much more effective is the engine brake), both have an I-beam front axle(not independent front suspension), and both have rear radiators(harder to work on than side radiators). These three upgrades are usually only found on the high-end coaches, which you didn't ask about.

In my opinion the biggest difference you will notice is in the wheelbase, Forza-236" vs. Journey-276". I would never go back to such a short wheelbase, they just don't drive as nicely and comfortably, having a choppy ride, instability in winds and tail-wagging-the-dog effect. There is no simpler way to improve handling than to increase wheelbase. I speak from owning four class A coaches, with successively a 208", 228", 267" and now a 294" w/tag wheelbase.

The one advantage of a shorter wheelbase is maneuverability in tight situations(campgrounds). Notice fire engines all have short wheelbases, for the same reason.

My 2¢, hope it helps.
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Old 02-19-2015, 04:39 PM   #5
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TurtleKent summed it up pretty well but, I would add; the Maxum is a lowered rail chassis that has a lower center of gravity and MUCH more storage.
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Old 02-19-2015, 06:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleKent View Post
In my opinion the biggest difference you will notice is in the wheelbase, Forza-236" vs. Journey-276". I would never go back to such a short wheelbase, they just don't drive as nicely and comfortably, having a choppy ride, instability in winds and tail-wagging-the-dog effect. There is no simpler way to improve handling than to increase wheelbase. I speak from owning four class A coaches, with successively a 208", 228", 267" and now a 294" w/tag wheelbase.

The one advantage of a shorter wheelbase is maneuverability in tight situations(campgrounds). Notice fire engines all have short wheelbases, for the same reason.

My 2¢, hope it helps.
Thanks Kent,

That is the kind of information I was interested in hearing about. All the rest is pretty easy to see, (more storage, WB, higher appointments, etc.), but those things I don't mean much to me in terms how they might affect handling. I'd be coming from a 33' gas Workhorse chassis and doubt I will get a chance to compare the two Freightliner chassis before purchasing one. BTW: I worked for Frieghtliner Corp in the 1970's as a systems programmer. You'd think they would take me under their wing and advise me in this issue... Not...

Thanks for your 2¢, it was worth way more than I paid!
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Old 02-25-2015, 04:39 AM   #7
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TurtleKent summed it up pretty well but, I would add; the Maxum is a lowered rail chassis that has a lower center of gravity and MUCH more storage.
I doubt the lower center of gravity will be noticeable. I believe the only reason for the lower rail is simply storage, that was one factor when I looked at these two models.

As far as towing and such... You can get both chassis with the same engine/tranny, it's just that you picked two models that are different in length and weight. If you are debating on the two the journey is a no brainier. Also note that the forza (not sure if all models) has no electric water heater so you will be using propane, not good if you are always on hookups.
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