Which RV Is Right For YOU? Motorhome or Towable

Purchasing a recreational vehicle is largely a personal choice.

Large and roomy Class A Diesel Pusher motorhomes offer the luxuries of a traditional home. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Large and roomy Class A Diesel Pusher motorhomes offer the luxuries of a traditional home. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Depending on a variety of factors including space requirements, towing facilities, budget, driver comfort level, and lifestyle preferences, select the type of RV that best meets your needs.

The two major categories of recreational vehicles are motorhomes (motorized) and towables (towed behind the car, van or pickup).

Sports utility RVs (also called toy haulers) feature a built-in garage for hauling bikes, ATVs, and sports equipment, and are available in both towable and motorized units.

There are pros and cons for each RV type. For most people the choice is largely influenced by budget and the intended use of the RV. There’s an RV for every taste and budget.

Motorized Units

Motorized units consist of three classes: A, B, and C. Class A motorhomes are generally the largest, Class B motorhomes or conversion vans are the smallest, and Class C motorhomes have many of the same creature comforts as a Class A, but in a smaller package.

Large and roomy Class A motorhomes offer the luxuries of a traditional home. Available with a gas or diesel engine, they are ideal for full-time living, family vacations, tailgating, and weekend excursions.

Considering the RV lifestyle? Try renting before laying down the cash. Camping in a rental Class C motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Considering the RV lifestyle? Try renting before laying down the cash. Camping in a rental Class C motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Built on a truck chassis, Class C motoromes have many of the same creature comforts as a Class A, but in a smaller package. This makes them more maneuverable and easier to park.

Motorized Unit Pros

Easier to drive and set up.

Best driving visibility with full windshield and high elevation.

Able to easily tow a variety of vehicles for local drives.

Self-leveling hydraulic or electric jacks eliminate need for stacking blocks or boards.

Access to entire unit without ever going outside (big plus if it is dark or rainy).

Motorized Unit Cons

Fifth wheels have a split-level floor plan and offer a home-like atmosphere. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Fifth wheels have a split-level floor plan and offer a home-like atmosphere. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

When towing, you cannot back up.

Cost and maintenance of a second vehicle.

If something needs to be repaired, your entire home must go in the shop.

More expensive than towable units.

Depreciates faster.

Less living space than comparable-sized travel trailers and fifth wheels.

Towable Units

Towable units consist of travel trailers, fifth wheel trailers, truck campers, and expandable or pop-up trailers.

Convenient for long-term travel as well as short trips, travel trailers are easy to tow with a minivan, SUV, or truck.

Easily identified by a raised extension that sits over and locks into the bed of a truck, fifth wheels have a split-level floor plan and offer a home-like atmosphere. Like travel trailers, fifth wheels are towed behind, but because a fifth wheel locks into the bed of a pickup and puts more weight over the rear axle, it is considerably more stable.

A truck camper sits in the back of a pickup truck, and because it doesn’t make use of the hitch, the truck can still tow a trailer or boat.

A pop-up trailer’s fold-up, lightweight design makes it easy for most trucks, SUVs, and even cars, to tow for providing the perfect RV for first-time users.

Towable Unit Pros

There’s an RV for every taste and budget.

There’s an RV for every taste and budget.

Since tow vehicle is required, it can be used for shopping and day trips.

Less expensive to purchase.

Maintains value longer.

Larger living space.

Towable Unit Cons

Hitching and unhitching larger units can be a hassle.

Non-drivers cannot legally be in the unit while moving.

Decisions

It all boils down to personal preferences, budget, and lifestyle. There is no right answer; one size does not fits all. Think through finances and how you will use your RV in making the decision that is right for you.

Worth Pondering…

Enjoy your journey—RV living is the freedom lifestyle.

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