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Old 11-26-2022, 10:36 PM   #1
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Vista/Sunstar - Used 2021/2022 vs. New 2023

Hi all. New poster, longtime lurker. I’ve owned travel trailers in the past but have made the decision to switch to a small gas Class A motorhome and am looking to buy in the next 2-4 months. If it makes a difference I’ll be mostly full-time but staying a few weeks (or more) at a time as opposed to constant travel.

Long story short, I came across the 2023 Vista/Sunstar 29NPF Edition (at least online) and honestly kinda fell in love with it for many reasons that probably aren’t really relevant to my post. Let’s just say it seems to check most of the boxes important to me, including improvements in areas that are negatives for me in the non-NPF model.

This really screwed me up because I was planning on buying a used 2021 or 2022 model to save some money and to hopefully ensure some of the initial shakedown work had been completed. But, in mulling all this over, I started wondering which may actually be the better decision given the current state of things.

In “normal times” I’d think buying used would generally be a better idea. But, with all the reports of increased quality concerns over the past couple years, it seems like there are some unique factors at play now. With Winnebago specifically, are there any thoughts on or experiences with 2021/2022 model quality versus 2023 models? I understand Winnebago tends to put out consistently higher quality coaches than many manufacturers, so I was curious how significant an impact the model year may have in this scenario, if any. Thanks in advance for any feedback.
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Old 11-30-2022, 01:37 AM   #2
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I know that my 17 is a decent RV. The only real issue is handling of the F53 chassis. Most owners have made upgrades to the chassis to improve ride and handling. My understanding is that newer ones still have the issues.
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Old 12-07-2022, 11:30 AM   #3
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I agree with you that the 2023 29 NPF is a nice unit. I also agree that you'll save 10%-to-20% by buying a used 2020-21. Probably more if the previous owner has done some upgrade work and fixed most, if not all, of the bugs.

My experiences have been pretty positive. We picked up our 2021 WBGO Adventurer 29B (similar to what you're looking at) in late March of 2021 and have covered more than 18,000 miles since then, most of it towing a 2020 Equinox.

CHASSIS:
  • Safe-T-Plus steering stabilizer. It helps a lot with centering the steering wheel, reducing "fidgiting" or wandering when driving and wind influence.
  • Sumo Springs on the rear suspension. That reduced sway and wind influence but slightly harshened the ride quality. It was a reasonable trade-off.
  • I'll get the warranty rear sway bar bracket fix in the spring, but in the meantime will just inspect regularly.

MOTOR: Glad to have the Godzilla motor over the old V10. Seems to have more pep and we've had no major issues climbing or descending mountains from the Adirondacks to the Rockies. Sure, it's not a diesel, but still... We average about 8.4 MPG when not towing and 7.5 MPG when towing our 2020 Equinox through all types of terrain. Average highway speed of about 65 MPH. We haven't had any spark-plug wire failures others have reported -- probably because there's no engine shroud. I keep the new plug wires as a spare and will have them installed at some point.

OTHER ADDITIONS:
  • A supplemental wireless rear camera monitor, which keeps the toad visible and helps me keep track of traffic behind me better.
  • Sound-proofing to the inside of the dog house cover, which seems to make a marginal difference to the interior noise level. Might add more sound-proofing to the underside of the cab area to see if that helps.
  • Five custom slide-out pantry shelves, allowing easy access to those deep pantries (look up "Shelves That Slide").
  • Custom wire shelving in the closet to replace the hanging bar – enabling us to carry a month or more worth of clothing. Also replaced the single LED closet light with wrap-around LED rope lighting.
  • A 3" memory foam topper to the mattress made the bed almost as good as our home bed.
  • Supplemental catch wires to keep the compartment doors from flying open if the latches failed. Happened once.
  • All of the Atyme TV's are trash. I've replaced them with far superior Vizio Model D Smart TV’s. Added a sound bar for the main TV along with a swivel mount.
  • Replaced the cheap Jensen inside and outside speakers with upgraded units for better sound.
  • Replaced the outside kitchen faucet with a taller bar faucet to make it more useful.

Yep, we've had a few QC issues:
  • Thanks to the iRV forum, I caught the low rear-differential oil issue when the MH only had about 1,800 miles on it. Topped it up myself and went 10,000 miles before being able to get it into Ford dealer for the warranty fix.
  • The dash AC lines were crossed at the WBGO factory and we had no dash AC for a while. Easy fix once discovered (thanks again to this forum).
  • We have the original ‘old style’ problematic spark plug wires. However, we haven’t had any misfiring issues – probably because there is NO passenger side engine baffle on our MH to cause heat build-up due to poor air circulation. A factory glitch that works! I keep the new plug wires as spares and will install them at some point.
  • I’ve experienced a few of the ‘Service Advance Trak’ messages accompanied by cruise control and ABS going out. These happened during our first long trip out west and seemed to be mostly associated with strong side-winds or wind buffeting. Engine restart cleared the problem. Haven’t had a problem over the past year or so and 12,000 miles.
  • One of the Coleman Mach AC's lost a fan blade and had to be replaced.
  • Leak in the shower skylight. Fixed.
  • Right turn video camera quit working due to poor lead connection – easy fix.
  • Leveling jacks were not properly calibrated.
  • A few trim pieces were loose. Fixed.
  • Front engine cover and grill almost came off when the glue failed -- used JB Weld epoxy and so far it's holding. Will also continue checking other glued-on items.
  • Had a PEX water line spring a leak under the sink due to an improperly installed bracket pinching the line.
  • The step motor failed and had to be replaced after 15,000 miles and 1-1/2 years.
  • A loose ground connection that cut 12 volt power to the coach drove me nuts for a while until I tracked it down.

Things I'd really like WBGO to make standard: Steering stabilizer, better sound proofing, better sound system, better TV's, slide-out pantry shelving, quieter AC's, stainless steel bathroom sink, better QC.

Still, we're looking forward to many more miles and years in this one.
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