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Old 10-29-2020, 09:06 AM   #1
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Fuel Economy

We are considering buying a Rv USA to travel for 6 months over a few years. Either B or C class, upto 15k Dollers.

What engine would give us best economy, Was hoping to find a Sprinter type but does not seem to be older versions listed at our budget.

So what would be the best for us to look for.
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Old 10-29-2020, 09:21 AM   #2
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Fuel will be among the least of your expenses unless you boondock for the majority of your camping. The biggest impact on fuel economy is the weight of your right foot on the accelerator pedal - you'll get far better economy driving <65mph (62 mph seems to be a sweet spot for a lot of RVs).

Also, the less you drive the cheaper your fuel expense is. How long do you plan to stay in one place? A trip to "see the USA" in 6 months will cost a lot more than "see parts of the USA in 6 months" because you'll be driving more.

My Class C achieves around 8 miles per gallon IF I try to keep up with traffic, but if I stay around/under 65 mph it goes up to ~10 mpg depending on terrain and winds. A 20% increase for an additional hour or so of time on a driving day may or may not be worth the time trade off for some folks.
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Old 10-30-2020, 05:57 AM   #3
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For long time travels, unless alone, a 'standard' Class B can get awfully small in a hurry, regardless of chassis brand name.

A Class C - they too range in size. If you are looking for a used one, would guess over 90% of the last 8-10 years build have either the Ford 5.4 V8 or 6.8 V10. Neither of these engines are economy champs hauling around the weight and aerodynamics of a barn door. I would expect that 7-9 mpg would be what you would be seeing.

Having owned a 5.4 and a 6.8 in 1/2, 3/4 and 1 ton pickups as tow vehicles for various RVs, can say that either will get the job done though the 6.8 will do it easier with a slight gas mileage penalty.
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Old 10-30-2020, 07:13 AM   #4
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Frankly $15,000 won't get you much of a motorized RV and it will be old. As such, fuel expense will seem minimal compared to repair and upkeep costs on any RV in that price range. Replacing tires can set you back a few thousand $$. Yes you see lots of older motorhome sitting in yards that you might see as easy to fix up and travel in. They are likely parked for a reason, cost to make running exceeds any practical value.

Sorry to rain on the parade but a motorized RV is usually more expensive to own than most owner's plan or think it is.
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Old 10-30-2020, 08:00 AM   #5
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What is the timing for your trip to the USA. Right now RV's, both motorized and pull behind, are bringing premium prices and are in shorter supply. My guess is that this may change in a couple years as people realize the cost of ownership and limited use of the RV.

Assume you plan to sell the motorhome after your trip so I would start doing research on manufacturers & models that have better resale value. You might be better off spending a little more to get a coach that you can sell for a decent price.

We owned a 31' Class C and it averaged about 7.5 mpg. We did not tow a 2nd car.

We now own a ~40' Class A diesel pusher and get about 8 mpg. The Class A is much more comfortable to drive and live in but not as maneuverable but we tow a vehicle for getting around.
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Old 10-30-2020, 08:10 AM   #6
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As others have said, fuel economy will be only a small part of your cost.

You will be much better going for reliability than fuel mileage.

I hope that you are handy at repairs, because for 15k, likely you will be tested.
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Old 10-30-2020, 08:23 AM   #7
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Should of said on first post, We already own and live in a American Rv in UK. 1999 Fleetwood Bounder 34J. Had her 12 years and she is LPG Converted to run on LPG.

We get about 8/9 on Petrol and 13/14 equivalent lpg.

We have a Mercedes Sprinter in Australia which gets 25 plus to the gallon "Diesel".

So we were hoping to find a Spinter type on USA as after a few trips was going to ship it back to UK.

But sure we will find a class B, when we are ready to travel and the World is open again.
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Old 10-30-2020, 10:00 AM   #8
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To flip a common saying, why own when you can rent? I would contact some of the RV owners who rent out their RV, and offer to give them a long term rent - cash up front. Given that many are not rented that much or that long, it would be a good deal for them, and you.
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Old 10-30-2020, 05:33 PM   #9
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My brother in law had the best answer when I asked him " what mileage did you get with your motorhome {24' class B} and his answer was "I don't know"
Dependability is the #1 issue as the mileage won't matter if your sitting and fixing. A gas "A" or "C" will be the same and a DP will be slightly better {not much}. A new Mercedes class B will be very good, but you pay upfront.
Many variables, but to most of us that have owned many, Reliability is first on the list.
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Old 10-31-2020, 04:55 AM   #10
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Thank you for replys.

Regarding Renting, Sorry but dead money. When we were looking at a Rv in Australia to Rent, costs for 6 months, was silly. Especially when we have returned for 6 month trips last 3 years.
So we bought a Coachbuilt Sprinter which is worth just as much now as when we bought her as prices stay good in Oz and it has been very well looked after, like our Rv in UK.

Also as have Spina bifida I use hand controls to drive, so not many if any Rv rentals could give this service.

So as said, we should expect roughly same mpg as our Bounder unless we find a Sprinter or VW.
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Old 10-31-2020, 09:59 AM   #11
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Finding a Sprinter-based B or C in your price range seems highly unlikely, so plan on 8-10 mpg.
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Old 10-31-2020, 01:16 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Gary RVRoamer View Post
Finding a Sprinter-based B or C in your price range seems highly unlikely, so plan on 8-10 mpg.
Yes I think your right. Shame we could not import I to USA our Oz sprinter as it's set up the way we like and has every thing needed to enjoy travelling.

But she is Right Hand Drive, so no chance.

We dont mind the 8/10 mpg when in USA its if we ship it back to UK.

But as our price range, Oz was around the same But ended up at 33k Oz Dollers. So if we or may sell it, then our budget for USA will go up.
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Old 10-31-2020, 07:47 PM   #13
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Right hand drive? Right hand drive Subarus and various Jeeps are quite popular here with the mail delivery people. They are certainly not banned or illegal to own and drive here.
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Old 11-01-2020, 08:56 AM   #14
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At a 15k max price you may be better off thinking about buying a old stripped out full size van. Then get your camping gear together. You will get around 10 mpg and be able to camp at any location. Any old motorized RV at that price will cost you a fortune fixing it up and keeping it on the road. Safe travels

Enjoy the journey
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