I was lucky enough to pick up a Southwind 34C mid February in the current RV climate. Climate meaning the current buying frenzy and during the Northeast winter weather.
I would consider myself a quick learner, but much closer to a Newbie to the RV world with just a year of actual drive time. Like many, I looked online and followed the do's/don'ts, the must haves and joined forums.
A little back story. My first class A was a Thor ACE 30.2. Having never drove a class A before, I white knuckled it home from Buffalo, NY. I averaged maybe 50 mph being tossed back and forth with every passing vehicle larger than a Prius. I threw about $4k in suspension work. (Safe-T-Plus, front and second rear sway bars, Sumo springs, and Koni shocks) Luckily I'm handy and installed everything myself otherwise it would have cost much more.
The family and I did a few nearby local State Parks no more than an hours drive and one trip to Disney. The big rigs were still pushing us a bit, but with an eye on the rear mirror, I can prepare for the eventual push.
If you are unaware of Thor's ACE products. They are entry level RVs. The quality was not there and everything rattled. The motor was loud and I felt isolated while driving even though the family was 3 feet away. The layout of the 30.2 sucked with the slide in. You had to walk thru the bathroom to get to the bedroom. Things started falling off, plumbing not glued, shower walls with gaps, silicon slapped on dirty surfaces, drains without caulking and a slow leak in two of the tires. What a mess!
Now, for the the initial review. The Southwind is considered Fleetwood's tier 4 Gas Class A. The revamped 2021 has lived up to the hype. The sway bars are two inches thick! The bump stops are almost touching the axles. The larger tires made for a better ride. The quality is much nicer. There are a few issues with fit and finish with some of the storage doors not being flush and the water heater cover being slightly warped, but I am happy with it aesthetically even with my OCD. The full paint is shiny. It drove nicely without any noticeable sway and so much quieter than my trade. The V-8 roars a bit when getting it going, but then tones down. I guess we'll have to wait and see how the V8 will last being the first year out. The new dash is a nice upgrade with an info screen. I averaged 7.5 mpg while pulling a 5000lb Jeep. All the holding tanks are much larger than my previous ride. I have on order the Safe-T-Plus with new mounting bracket and according to Henderson's RV in OR, the Roadmaster 1139-149 auxiliary sway bar still fits and they're working on adapting their SmartSteer gear for the 2021s. Overall, I'm happy with my new toy.
I know some people worry about the CCC on the 34C being around 2K. We're not full-timers and even with a full tank, we can manage with the 22K frame.
I almost forgot. While driving home, I stopped in a small town to get gas, and at the toll booth in NJ, 10 miles from home, I heard some scrapping.
Reminder to self. Slam your door and make sure its closed tightly. Otherwise the steps will extend outward each time you hit a bump. I told you I was a Newbie!
I know the forum likes pictures, so I'll post them in a few days after the current snow. If you want something pictured, let me know.
Thanks for reading.