Take Control of Your Vacation

Everyone has been there.

Fleetwood Providence Diesel Pusher Class A motorhome  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Fleetwood Providence Diesel Pusher Class A motorhome at Canyon de Chelly, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

The thrill and anticipation of a vacation on the horizon, but the dread of security checks, baggage claims, cancelled flights, and adhering to someone else’s schedule. The airline schedule, cruise ship, and bus tours.

But there are alternatives that give you full control of your vacation.

There is a better way. In fact, now is the perfect time to plan unrestricted, adventurous family vacations for the upcoming summer holiday season.

All you need is a recreational vehicle, maps, national campground and RV park directory, and vacation time with your family.

Some benefits to RVing include affordable travel with your family and pets, and the ability to go wherever you want, whenever you want.

It’s fun to plan family trips and make memories along the way.

However, shopping for a recreational vehicle can be overwhelming and choosing the right one is no small decision. Take your time, do your homework, talk to owners of various types and brands of RVs, attend RV shows, and locate a good reputable dealer who stands behind his products and provides quality service.

Class B motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Class B motorhome at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Arizona/Utah © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Best of all, there is an RV for just about every budget and every family. It just takes some time to find it. One of the primary aspects involved in selecting a recreational vehicle is making a decision on the type of RV you need. Two primary types should be considered: Towable and motorized.

Towable RVs

Towable RVs must be mounted on or towed by a motorized vehicle to be moved from place to place. Some towables are small and light enough to be towed by the family car, while others require an SUV or pickup truck. Always verify your vehicle’s towing capability and allow for the added weight of personal belongings loaded on board.

Conventional travel trailers offer a wide range of floor plans, sizes, and conveniences.

Fifth wheel trailers have similar amenities as travel trailers, but are constructed with a raised forward section that provides a spacious bi-level floor plan. These models are designed to be towed by a pickup truck equipped with a fifth-wheel hitch.

Also known as pop-ups and tent trailers, folding camping trailers are great for outdoor lovers who enjoy sleeping in a tent without sleeping on the ground. Folding camping trailers stow away for easy, lightweight towing. With canvas sides that extend to reveal queen-sized beds, it’s easy to have a fresh-air experience with all the comforts of an RV.

Keystone Montana fifth wheel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Keystone Montana fifth wheel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Also known as sport utility RVs, toy haulers are for the active family who wants to take motorcycles, dirt bikes, ATVs, or other motorized toys on the road. Available as a fifth wheel or travel trailer, the rear end of the toy hauler drops down, forming a ramp for access into a “garage” area where motorized toys can be safely stored; the living quarters are separated by a wall.

The truck camper is a portable unit designed to be loaded onto, or affixed to, the bed or chassis of a pickup truck. The slide-in units are easily loaded and unloaded from the bed of the truck, freeing the truck’s bumper to tow boats, ATVs, and other trailers.

It is important to match the loaded weight of the towable RV to the towing capacity of the tow vehicle. Consult your dealer or owner’s manual for details and have the tow hitch professionally installed.

Motorized RVs

Commonly known as motorhomes, motorized RVs are on a motorized chassis with gas or diesel engines.

Class A or conventional motorhomes are constructed entirely on a specially designed motor vehicle chassis. Home-like amenities abound, and generally these motorhomes have kitchens, bathrooms, living areas with entertainment centers and centrally controlled heating and air conditioning.

Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Scamp travel trailer at Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Commonly called camper vans, Class B motorhomes are built using automotive manufactured van or panel-truck shells. Camping vans drive more like the family car, but offer the comforts and conveniences of home on the road.

Class C motorhomes are built on an automotive van frame with a wider body section attached to the original cab section. Many Class C motorhomes are easily recognizable by the over-the-cab area that is often an optional sleeping area. Amenities are similar to those in conventional motorhomes.

Many owners choose to tow a small vehicle for short side trips once the motorhome is parked.

Additional Tips

Now that you’ve identified the type of RV that best suits your family, it’s time to shop for the best fitting style, floor plan, price range, and options. The following tips can help for an easier RV shopping experience:

  • Set a price range
  • Think about types of floor plans that work best for you and your family
  • For a towable RV, consider your tow vehicle’s towing capacity; for a motorized RV, consider the pros and cons of gas and diesel engines

Please Note: For an additional resource, read The 4 Most Important Tips For Purchasing a New RV

Worth Pondering…

When your vacation happens on the open road, your trip is only limited by your imagination.

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Buy a New RV in 2015: You Deserve It!

A newly published study shows that RV vacations cost substantially less than other forms of vacation travel, even when factoring in fuel prices and the cost of RV ownership.

2015 Starflyer 10
Folding camping trailer: 2015 Starcraft Starflyer 10

For a four-person travel party, the study found savings of 27 percent to 62 percent; a two-person travel party saved 11 percent to 48 percent.

The research was conducted by PKF Consulting USA, and com­missioned by the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). It updates previous vacation cost comparison studies done by PKF.

The PKF study provides a vacation cost analysis using two sets of hypothetical travel parties: a four-person travel party of two adults and two children, and a two-person travel party of two adults.

PKF analyzed major costs these hypothetical travelers would incur taking nine different types of vacations to nine popular vacation destinations. For each destination, researchers analyzed vacations that last three, seven, and 14 days.

2015 Ascend Cloud by EverGreen
Lightweight travel trailer: 2015 Ascend Cloud by EverGreen

The study compared different methods of travel, including a folding camping trailer, a lightweight travel trailer, a compact motorhome, a Class C motorhome, and a Class A motorhome. The Class A motorhome was used for comparison vs. first-class travel options such as flying first class, renting a premium car, staying in upscale hotels/resorts, and eating meals in restaurants.

RV travel emerged as having a clear economic advantage over other forms of travel, regardless of the RV type. Following is what a four-person travel party could expect to save:

  • Folding camping trailer – 47-62 percent
  • Lightweight travel trailer – 34-53 percent
  • Compact motorhome – 27-48 percent
  • Class C motorhome – 28-48 percent
  • Class A motorhome – 38 percent

Following is the what a two-person travel party could expect to save:

  • Folding camping trailer – 38-48 percent
  • Lightweight travel trailer – 23-36 percent
  • Compact motorhome – 19-32 percent
  • Class C motorhome – 15-28 percent
  • Class A motorhome – 14 percent
2015 Interstate Grand Tour
Compact motorhome: 2015 Airstream Interstate Grand Tour

As part of its analysis, PKF considered how fluctuating fuel prices might affect vacation costs. Their findings showed that fuel prices would have to reach more than $12 per gallon for a four-person travel party before RVing would begin to lose its economic advantage over other forms of travel. For a two-person travel party, fuel would have to reach $6 per gallon.

Buying a new recreational vehicle is one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make, so it should come as no surprise that choosing the right one for you is no small decision.

When contemplating the purchase of an RV, take your time, do your homework, talk to owners of similar brands and models, attend RV shows.

RV shows are a great place to begin exploring what’s out there. These events allow you to explore different RV manufacturers and models while providing you with an opportunity to speak with dealer and manufacturer representatives, as well as other owners and shoppers in an ideal setting where your questions can be answered. You’ll also be able to compare floor plans and features side-by-side.

Class A motorhome: 2015 Newmar King Aire
Class A motorhome: 2015 Newmar King Aire

When it comes to researching your new RV purchase, the last thing you want to be is hasty. It is important to consider your budget, wants and needs, future travel plans, and any other items you feel are important in making your decision, such as safety, quality, and reliability.

There are plenty of ways to do your homework online using sites like vogeltalksrving.com. Sites like these provide news on the latest and greatest in RVs along with reviews on many of the newest models available. Internet forums are a good way to obtain honest feedback from current owners and learn from their experiences.

Take notes on each RV you see, focusing on your likes and dislikes.

Do not underestimate the importance of selecting the right floor plan for your needs.

It is also important to locate a good reputable dealer who stands behind his products and provides quality service Best of all, there is a coach for just about every budget and every family. It just takes some time to find it.

Class C motorhome: 2015 Thor Motor Coach Citation
Class C motorhome: 2015 Thor Motor Coach Citation

Worth Pondering…

I enjoy the RV world. I will have one until the day I die.

—Bob Gibson, Hall of Fame major league pitcher

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Motorized & Towable RV Sales Soar in 2014

Sales of recreational vehicles in the United States hit a low point during the recession, bottoming out in the spring of 2009 with the bankruptcy of two large motorhome manufacturers—Fleetwood Enterprises and Monaco Coach.

2015 Keystone Montana 3791RD fifth wheel
2015 Keystone Montana 3791RD fifth wheel

Yet these days, RV sales have improved along with the economy. Lower priced towables with price tags that can start at around $10,000, led the recovery. Sales of the more expensive motorized RVs, including motor \homes that can have price tags well over $500,000, caught up later.

In North America sales were running over 300,000 units a year until 2008, according to report by Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI). In 2009, sales dropped to 206,000 units. By 2013, they went back to 303,000 units. So in four years it came back 47 percent from the bottom, which is very impressive as an economic indicator.

During that time, sales of towable RVs (including folding trailers, truck campers, and travel trailers) rose 46.4 percent while sales of the more expensive motorized motorhomes (Class A, B, and C) gained 51 percent from the 2009 low.

And in 2014 motorized and towable RV sales continued to soar.

December 2014 motorhome retail registrations increased 27.4 percent compared to the same period a year ago, driving year-end totals to a 16.4 percent increase.

2015 Tuscany XTE
2015 Tuscany XTE

Forest River Inc. was the sales leader for 2014 with a 24.8 percent market share, edging out No. 2 Thor Industries Inc. which captured a 24.2 percent share. Winnebago Industries Inc. was third with a 20.8 percent share, according to the latest report by SSI.

Sales in the Class A motorhome market grew 23.1 percent for the month while ending the year up 14.8 percent. Thor led the segment with a 23 percent market share followed by Winnebago (20 percent), Forest River (15.4 percent), and Tiffin Motorhomes Inc. (15.1 percent).

Class C motorhome registrations saw a 34.7 percent rise in December and posted an 18.3 percent gain for 2014. Forest River was the segment leader for the 12 months with a 35.7 percent market share, followed by Thor (25.6 percent), and Winnebago with 21.7 percent of the market.

Adding further evidence of a banner year for the RV industry, SSI reported that towable retail sales climbed 10.3 percent in 2014, spurred by a 24.4 percent increase during December. All segments showed year-over-year gains for the month.

Towable results by category showed:

Sales for the high-volume travel trailer sector shot up 30.5 percent for the month and 12.3 percent year-to-date.

Entegra Coach Introduces 2015 Cornerstone Class A in 3 Models
Entegra Coach Introduces 2015 Cornerstone Class A in 3 Models

Fifth-wheel registrations gained 12.9 percent in December and 7.1 percent for the 12 months.

Folding camping trailer sales were up 5.4 percent for the month but dipped 2.8 percent for the year.

Recreational park trailer sales gained 38.7 percent in December and 6.5 percent for the 12 months.

Forest River Inc. was the towable sales leader for 2014 with a 36.4 percent market share, edging out Thor Industries Inc. which captured a 36.1 percent share. Jayco Inc. was No. 3 with a 12.9 percent share.

By segment, Forest River was No. 1 in travel trailer sales for the year with a 37.4 percent market share, ahead of Thor (33.6 percent) and Jayco (14.4 percent).

Thor was No. 1 in fifth-wheel sales, capturing a 49.1 percent market share, followed by Forest River (30.4 percent), Jayco (8.9 percent) and Grand Design RV Co. (6.3 percent).

Forest River was the folding camping trailer sales leader for the full year with a 64 percent market share while Jayco (14.1 percent) held the No. 2 position followed by Columbia Northwest/Aliner Inc. (11.3 percent).

2015 Jayco Jay Series Sport exterior
2015 Jayco Jay Series Sport exterior

In the park model segment, Kropf Manufacturing Co. Inc. was No. 1 with a 15.1 percent share, followed by Skyline Corp. (12.7 percent) and Thor (10.8 percent).

Worth Pondering…

RVing is great no matter what the weather. If it’s pleasant outdoors, then you can hike, swim, fish, or just hang around camp and snooze on your lawn chair. If the weather is cold and dreary, or rainy, you can simply hole up inside your little house and be as comfy as can be.

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Musician Mayer Sports Off-Road RV EarthRoamer

An increasing number of celebrities enjoy relaxing in the same way we do—in a recreational vehicle.

John Mayer poses with his EarthRoamer Xpedition vehicle  (Photo source: Instagram)
John Mayer poses with his EarthRoamer Xpedition vehicle (Photo source: Instagram)

And an increasing number of off-road RVs are rolling off production lines, up mountains, across deserts, and right past traditional RV parks and campgrounds.

Grammy-winning musician and songwriter John Mayer decided he needed the ultimate recreational vehicle, a formidable go-anywhere, live-anywhere vehicle.

So he did what any guy with hundreds of thousands of dollars to spare might do—headed to Dacono, Colorado, and the folks at EarthRoamer.

The difference between these RVs and grandma-and-grandpa rigs starts from the ground up. Your typical recreational vehicle is a luxury home-on-wheels, but it’s also a cumbersome beast that requires modern roads and spacious camping spaces.

The average off-road RV chassis is far more compact and agile often including 4-wheel drive, oversized tires, and even lift kits.

Arguably, the most off-road capable RVs on the planet, EarthRoamer, is built on the chassis of a Ford 550 or 650 4X4 pickup truck.

But these off-road condos aren’t solely focused on taking you into the backcountry; they also help you thrive once you’re there.

EarthRoamer Xpedition vehicle interior (Photo credit: RJ Sangosti /The Denver Post)
EarthRoamer Xpedition vehicle interior (Photo credit: RJ Sangosti /The Denver Post)

Mayer posted a photo of his new massive truck on Instagram and wrote in the caption, “I am a proud owner of this most formidable go-anywhere, live-anywhere vehicle.”

“One year and many meetings in the making, she’s all mine. Completely hand-built in Colorado by extremely talented and innovative men and women. Who knows where I’ll end up next.”

Mayer could end up most anywhere.

Measuring in at more than 26 feet long, the Ford F-550-based EarthRoamer is designed to go around, through, and over just about anything.

Inside, the XV-LTS has an overcab bunk compartment, storage cabinets, a bathroom, shower, kitchenette, and seating for up to eight.

Powering this turbodiesel four-wheel drive behemoth is a 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8, packing 300-hp and 660 pound-feet of torque.

Think Hummer + Land Rover +Jeep + high-tech house all rolled into one state-of-the-art package.

But before you custom-order your EarthRoamer keep in mind that prices start at $280,000 for these Xpedition vehicles, with no options. Add on a lot of extra features and you’ll get to a cool million.

No word on the final tab for Mayer’s custom job.

The vehicles weigh 13,000 to 17,000 pounds, yet still average 12 miles per gallon on the highway thanks to that turbo diesel powerplant under the hood.

EarthRoamer is Freedom

Owners of EarthRoamer Xpedition Vehicles have the freedom to travel, camp, and explore on their terms.

With 253 million of acres of public BLM land, 193 million acres of National Forrest land, 6,624 state parks, and 58 national parks in the United States containing thousands of beautiful remote campsites, you could easily spend a lifetime of adventure without ever leaving America

For more adventurous travelers, the world becomes your backyard with an EarthRoamer

2013-EarthRoamer-Owners-Rally-Group-Panorama-webDetails

EarthRoamer

Dacono, Colorado-based EarthRoamer is the global leader in Xpedition Vehicle (XV) engineering, design, and manufacturing.

EarthRoamer was the first to build Xpedition vehicles in North America and their Ford F-550 based EarthRoamer XV-LT model line is currently the best-selling Xpedition Vehicle model in the world.

They have over 130 EarthRoamer Xpedition Vehicles on the road and almost two dozen repeat EarthRoamer buyers. EarthRoamer vehicles are 100 percent American made.

Address: 5073 Silver Peak Ave, Dacono, CO 80514

Phone: (303) 833-7330

Website: www.earthroamer.com

Worth Pondering…

The past is a ghost, the future a dream. All we ever have is now.

—Bill Cosby

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Winnebago Introduces New 2015 Models at Florida RV SuperShow

Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago Industries, Inc. is displaying a full complement of new 2015 products at the Florida RV Trade Association’s (FRVTA) Florida RV SuperShow in Tampa, January 14-18, at the Florida State Fairgrounds.

Winnebago Introduces New 2015 Models at Florida RV SuperShow
Winnebago Introduces New 2015 Models at Florida RV SuperShow

“We have continued to turn up the dial on new product development with many new floor plans making their retail show debut in Tampa,” said Winnebago Industries’ Chairman, CEO and President Randy Potts, in a news release.

“We have a great history as an innovator in the industry and we are excited to show off our newest innovations at the show.”

Winnebago is introducing several new models to retail consumers for the first time at the SuperShow, including:

Travato 59K (Class C)

Travato 59K features innovative advances in technology and comfort systems. This is the first Class B in North America to feature the new 90 percent efficient Truma-Combi heating and hot water system that provides quick hot water recovery, quiet, consistent air delivery throughout the coach and an electric-heating element that uses campground electricity to take the chill off a brisk morning.

Aspect 27D (Class C)

2015 Aspect 27D in light bronze full body paint
2015 Aspect 27D in light bronze full body paint

Flexible floor plan provides a front living area, galley and bath, plus a rear lounge for spacious two-zone living during the day and comfortable sleeping for up to six adults at night.

Sightseer 36Z (Class A Gas)

This spacious, open floor plan features a triple-slide and bath and a half layout. A large 50-inch TV on powered lift is built into the unique fireplace and wine storage cabinet. An available power StudioLoft bed offers added sleeping space.

Adventurer 32D (Class A Gas)

The perfect couples coach, this quad-slide floorplan includes a large in-Lounge dinette with Fold and Tumble bed, flexible in-Table, workstation/desk with USB, 12V, and 110V power ports, electric fireplace, and beautiful galley with private-collection Corian countertop, and a tile/glass mosaic backsplash.

Forza 36G (Class A Diesel)

2015 Forza 36G in sandstone full body paint
2015 Forza 36G in sandstone full body paint

Luxurious new triple-slide floor plan features a spacious lounge that’s ideal for entertaining. The master bedroom with queen or available king bed offers plenty of storage, including a wardrobe, chest of drawers, and hanging space.

Spyder Premium Toy Hauler (Travel Trailer)

Sets the standard in features and value for those who love to take their toys with them to play in the outdoors.

Destination 39FB (Fifth Wheel)

Featuring a bath-and-a-half design, the newest member of the Destination family continues the tradition of combining top-of-the-line style and comfort with premium amenities and performance.

Additional new 2015 products at the show include:

Journey 40R (Class A Diesel)

With true residential feel, the 40R is a triple slide floor plan that includes a curb-side full-wall slide and a bath and a half design.

Brave 31C (Class A Gas)

Nostalgia & Retro Winnebago Brave
Nostalgia & Retro Winnebago Brave

The brow is back. The new 31C retro-inspired Brave includes fun and function with a full-wall slideout floor plan that features a large, comfortable lounge, mid-coach bath, and walk-around queen (or available king) bed, and brings the total to three floor plans for these vintage looking, totally modern motorhomes.

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis based products, the Era, Via, and Reyo motorhome lines, are incorporating the new Mobileye collision avoidance system, which includes collision warning, lane departure warning, headway monitoring and warning, pedestrian, and bicycle collision warning, speed limit indication, and intelligent high beam control on select units.

Worth Pondering…

Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”
—Henry Ford

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Thor Motor Coach Introduces New Floor Plans at Florida RV SuperShow

Thor Motor Coach (TMC) is showcasing their 2015 floor plans at the Florida RV Trade Association’s (FRVTA) Florida RV SuperShow in Tampa, January 14-18, at the Florida State Fairgrounds.

2015 Vegas RUV
2015 Vegas RUV

Making a debut in Florida is the Axis and Vegas RUV 25.2 floor plan, the first in the RUV line-up to feature a bedroom slideout that houses a walk-around queen size bed with a Denver Mattress. The L-shaped sofa with a removable pedestal table provides a place to eat, a place to watch TV, or a place to sleep.

“We’re very excited about the success of our RUVs. We’ve been on a high since last year when we first introduced them and we’ve created a total of three new floor plans,” said Joel Grimm, national sales manager of Class A and Class C Gas Division.

“Owners feel like it was made to fit their lifestyle. They’re compact, easy to drive, and contain living and storage spaces that you just don’t have in a SUV. It’s been nothing but positive reviews.”

The Tuscany XTE 40AX will also be displayed, focusing on entertainment with reclining theater seats are positioned directly across from a 60-inch LED Smart HDTV. The TV retracts into the counter below when it’s not in use, giving way to a view of the outdoors.

The 40AX also features an additional 40-inch LED TV. The model includes residential kitchen appliances, standard in every Tuscany XTE motorhome and Amish-built custom cabinetry.

2015 Tuscany XTE
2015 Tuscany XTE

The Outlaw Class A expands its claim as the ultimate residential motorhome with a new 39-foot model named the 38RE, which was recently awarded the 2015 Top RV Debut by RVBusiness. It has an immense living area, as well as a bedroom featuring 9-foot coffered ceilings and a bath-and-a-half arrangement. The rear “Patio Deck” folds down to reveal an exterior kitchenette, 50-inch big screen TV, and Bluetooth radio.

Other Thor Motor Coach models to look for at the Tampa RV Show include:

Vegas RUV 24.2 model with rear kitchen and captain’s chairs in living area and 25.2 floor plan with bedroom slideout

Single rear-axle Tuscany 40DX featuring fully-reclining theater seating and retractable 60-inch LED Smart HDTV

Tuscany XTE Class A Diesel Pushers with high-gloss glazed cabinetry

Dynamic and cool, new Palazzo 36.2 Class A Diesel with laundry suite

2015 Outlaw 38RE Residential Edition with coffered ceilings
2015 Outlaw 38RE Residential Edition with coffered ceilings

Four Winds Super C 35SF featuring a bath-and-a-half

Outlaw Class A motorhomes including RVBusiness2015 Top RV Debut, Outlaw 38RE

ACE 29.3 with convenient camp-side dinette seating and exterior kitchen

Innovative Axis RUV 24.2 with rear kitchen and captain’s chairs in living area

Axis RUV 25.1 with large L-shaped sofa and entertainment area in back

Chateau Super C 35SF featuring a bath-and-a-half

Ingenious Hurricane 31S with optional exterior kitchen

New Miramar 33.5 model with theater seating

Luxurious Challenger Class A gas motorhomes

Class C motorhomes including Freedom Elite and Chateau Citation Sprinter Class B+

Details

Thor Motor Coach

Thor Motor Coach; North America's Best Selling Motorhome BrandThor Motor Coach was formed when Damon Motor Coach and Four Winds International strategically merged in late 2010. For over 23 years Damon and Four Winds have been building many of the most recognized brands of motorhomes. Thor Motor Coach manufactures Class A Front Engine Diesel motorhomes (Serrano and Avanti), Class A Diesel Pusher motorhomes (Astoria, Tuscany, and Palazzo), Class A Gas motorhomes (A.C.E., Hurricane, Daybreak, Windsport, Challenger, and Outlaw), and Class C motorhomes (Four Winds, Chateau, Siesta, Siesta Sprinter, Citation, and Citation Sprinter).

Thor Motor Coach is a subsidiary of Thor Industries, Inc., Jackson Center, Ohio, the world’s largest manufacturer of recreational vehicles.

Address: 701 County Road 15, PO Box 1486, Elkhart, Indiana 46516

Phone: (800) 860-5658

Website: thormotorcoach.com

Worth Pondering…

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

—Stephen Covey

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More December 2014 RV Manufacturer Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently announced five recall notices involving three recreational vehicle/chassis manufacturers— Keystone RV, Thor Motor Coach, and Jayco.

Keystone RV Company

Keystone-Rv-Co.-logoKeystone RV Company (Keystone) is recalling certain model year 2015 Dutchmen Rubicon trailers manufactured August 22, 2014, to September 17, 2014. The affected vehicles may have been assembled with the clamp installed incorrectly on the fuel line at the generator fuel filter and the fuel tank. As a result, the fuel line may disconnect.

If the fuel line at the generator fuel filter and fuel tank disconnects, fuel may leak, increasing the risk of a fire.

Keystone has notified owners, and dealers will inspect the fuel line clamp on the generator and the fuel tank and reposition it, as necessary, free of charge. The recall began on October 17, 2014. Owners may contact Keystone customer service at 1-866-425-4369. Keystone’s number for this recall is 14-218.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Keystone RV Company

Keystone-Rv-Co.-logoKeystone RV Company (Keystone) is recalling certain model year 2014-2015 Dutchmen Aerolite, and Dutchmen Denali travel trailers manufactured December 2, 2013, to September 11, 2014. The affected trailers may have been produced with a 12V breaker that is located near the battery, but may not have been connected to the protected terminal breaker.

Should the 12V breaker experience an electrical short, a vehicle fire could occur.

Keystone will notify owners, and dealers will verify the wiring to the breakers is connected to the protected terminal and/or remedy the connection, free of charge. The recall began November 5, 2014. Owners may contact Keystone customer service at 1-219-642-4590. Keystone’s number for this recall is 14-217.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Keystone RV Company

Keystone-Rv-Co.-logoKeystone RV Company (Keystone) is recalling certain model year 2015 Laredo trailers manufactured July 7, 2014, to October 14, 2014. In the affected vehicles, a circuit breaker may rub against the propane cylinder.

If the circuit breaker rubs against the propane cylinder, an electrical short may result, increasing the risk of a fire.

Keystone has notified owners, and dealers will relocate the breaker away from the propane cylinder, free of charge. The recall began on November 10, 2014. Owners may contact Keystone customer service at 1-866-425-4369. Keystone’s number for this recall is 14-219.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Thor Motor Coach

Thor Motor Coach; North America's Best Selling Motorhome BrandThor Motor Coach (Thor) is recalling certain model year 2015 Four Winds 5000, Hurricane, Miramar, Chateau Citation, Chateau, Four Winds Siesta, Windsport, and Freedom Elite motorhomes manufactured August 7, 2014, to October 17, 2014. The affected motorhomes have awnings whose mounting brackets may crack, and the awnings may fall.

If an awning falls, there is an increased risk of injury to anyone under the awning.

Thor has notified owners, and dealers will replace the defective mounting brackets, free of charge. The recall began on November 10, 2014. Owners may contact Thor customer service at 1-877-855-2867. Thor’s number for this recall is RC000095.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Jayco, Inc.

Jayco Color logo birdJayco, Inc. (Jayco) is recalling certain model year 2015 Eagle HT FW P1 PN PP PR PW PX PY and PZ trailers manufactured August 20, 2014, to October 27, 2014. The affected vehicles may have incorrect weight calculations on the cargo carrying capacity label. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 110, “Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or less.”

A vehicle operator could inadvertently overload the trailer due to the incorrect information, resulting in the trailer having tire failure, increasing the risk of a crash.

Jayco has notified owners, and dealers will replace the certification label with a corrected certification label, free of charge. The recall began on November 12, 2014. Owners may contact Jayco customer service at 1-800-283-8267. Jayco’s number for this recall is 9901226.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Please Note: This is the 46th in a series of articles relating to RV Manufacturers Recalls

Worth Pondering…

Do every act of your life as if it were your last.

—Marcus Aurelius

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Fleetwood RV Introduces Storm 26P & F-21 Advantage

Decatur, Indiana-based Fleetwood RV recently introduced a new floor plan for the Storm.

Fleetwood RV Introduces Storm 26P
Fleetwood RV Introduces Storm 26P

The Storm 26P is a crossover motorhome, delivering the size efficiency of a Class C with the amenities and living and storage space of a Class A.

Spacious bedroom with complete walk-around queen-sized bed and side-wall ward units.

The bed in the Storm 26P raises to the ceiling with the touch of a button, revealing a walk-in closet where owners can store clothing, shoes, and other necessities for their adventures.

When the bed is in the raised position, it creates ample storage space at the rear of the Storm where bicycles, a grill, lawn chairs, or other gear can be safety stowed.

When owners arrive at their destination, they can unpack the storage area, and then lower the bed for sleeping accommodations.

Storm 26P features the Hide-A-Loft Nesta, a patent-pending bed-lift mechanism which converts a raised bed into a full-wall walk-in closet with dual-mirrored wardrobe doors and dressers.

Hide-A-Loft Nesta
Storm 26P features the Hide-A-Loft Nesta, a patent-pending bed-lift mechanism which converts a raised bed into a full-wall walk-in closet with dual-mirrored wardrobe doors and dressers.

The new Storm 26P also features many of Fleetwood RV’s F-21 Advantage proof points.

The F-21 Advantage is an industry-leading approach to motorhome engineering, manufacturing, and materials that exceeds the standard, according to a company news release.

The “F” in F-21 stands for Fleetwood RV and the “21” stands for 21st-century motorhome materials and construction techniques.

The F-21 Advantage is demonstrated by 21 key proof points that deliver unique benefits to Fleetwood owners. While not all 21 proof points are found on every Fleetwood model, every Fleetwood motorhome, regardless of its class, features some or all of these points.

F-21 Advantage proof points include features like the Five-Point Build System. It is comprised of a jig-built steel structure bridge; precision jig-built, welded aluminum framing; vacu-bonded walls; interlocking ceiling wall and floor joints; and weather-resistant materials and coatings.

Storm 29P MSRP starts at $101,000.

Details

Fleetwood RV, Inc

Fleetwood RV, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of Class A and Class C recreational vehicles.

The Company has one of the best and longest standing distribution networks in the industry and boasts some of the industry’s most recognized and iconic brand names such as American Coach, Discovery, Jamboree, Southwind, and Bounder.

Storm 26P floor plan
Storm 26P floor plan

Headquartered and manufactured in Decatur, Indiana, Fleetwood RV is an Allied Recreation Group company and a division of Orlando based Allied Specialty Vehicles.

Factory Tours: Monday through Friday at 9:00 a.m.

Address: 1031 U.S. 224 East, Decatur, Indiana 46733

Phone: (800) 322-8216

Website: www.fleetwoodrv.com

Allied Recreation Group (ARG)

The only recreational vehicle manufacturing company with the stability, singular focus, unmatched integrity, and revolutionary vision to be the steward of the most trusted, iconic American RV brands, proudly leading them into the next generation.

Allied Recreation Group is a collection of some of the world’s most recognized and admired RV brands. Each brand—American Coach, Fleetwood, Holiday Rambler and Monaco—remains distinct, while together the group is a celebration of the rich heritage and future promise of the greatest manufacturers in the RV industry.

Address:1031 US 224 East, Decatur, Indiana 46733

Phone: (800) 854-1344 (toll free)

Website: www.alliedrecreationgroup.com

Worth Pondering…

Do not lose hold of your dreams or aspirations. For if you do, you may still exist but you have ceased to live.

—Henry David Thoreau

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Winnebago Introduces New Products Including Spyder Toy Hauler

Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago Industries, Inc. displayed a full slate of new products at the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) 52nd Annual National RV Trade Show, December 2-4 at the Kentucky Expo Center in Louisville, Kentucky.

Winnebago Spyder toy hauler
Winnebago Spyder toy hauler

Winnebago introduced several new models at the show, including a new diesel-powered Trend that will provide even higher fuel efficiency of 18-21 mpg with the Ram ProMaster chassis that will also be available on the Company’s Viva and Travato product lines, according to a company news release.

Winnebago also introduced its first travel trailer toy hauler line—the Spyder.

The Spyder is an all-new premium toy hauler that sets the standard in features and value for those who love to play in the outdoors. Features include a black fiberglass exterior with dynamic Spyder graphics, radius ceilings, faux concrete countertops and black galley sinks, 6000-pound frame mounted tie-downs, 94-inch x 7 foot 6-inch ramp door and available pull-down screen door and patio rails.

Additional new products making their debut at the show include:

Travato 59K (Class C motorhome)

Features innovative advances in technology and comfort systems. This is the first Class B in North America to feature the new 97 percent efficient Truma-Combi heating and hot water system that provides quick hot water recovery, quiet, consistent air delivery throughout the coach, and an electric-heating element that uses campground electricity to take the chill off a brisk morning.

At the RV show with Winnebago
At the RV show with Winnebago

Aspect 27D (Class C motorhome)

Flexible floor plan provides a front living area, galley, and bath, plus a rear lounge for spacious two-zone living during the day and comfortable sleeping for up to 6 adults at night.

Sightseer 36Z (Class A Gas motorhome)

This spacious, open floor plan features a triple-slide and bath-and-a-half layout. A large 50-inch TV on powered lift is built into the unique fireplace and wine storage cabinet. An available power StudioLoft bed offers added sleeping space.

Adventurer 32D (Class A Gas motorhome)

The perfect couple’s coach, this quad-slide floor plan includes a large in-Lounge dinette with Fold and Tumble bed, flexible in-Table, workstation/desk with USB, 12V and 110V power ports, electric fireplace and beautiful galley with private-collection Corian countertop, and a tile/glass mosaic backsplash.

Winnebago Introduces New Products Including Spyder Toy Hauler
Winnebago Introduces New Products Including Spyder Toy Hauler

Forza 36G (Class A Diesel motorhome)

Luxurious new triple-slide floor plan features a spacious lounge that’s ideal for entertaining. The master bedroom with queen or available king bed offers plenty of storage, including a wardrobe, chest of drawers, and hanging space.

Destination 39FB (fifth wheel trailer)

Featuring a bath-and-a-half design, the newest member of the Destination family continues the tradition of combining top-of-the-line style and comfort with premium amenities and performance.

In addition, the Era, Via, and Reyo motorhome lines are incorporating the new Mobileye collision avoidance system, which includes collision warning, lane departure warning, headway monitoring and warning, pedestrian and bicycle collision warning, speed limit indication, and intelligent high beam control on select units.

Winnebago is also showcasing various processes, components and programs that illustrate the unique features and benefits of its products.

“Our product management and design teams are doing a phenomenal job of continually bringing to market new and exciting products that are leading the industry in both features and innovative design,” said Winnebago Industries Chairman, CEO and President Randy Potts.

“The Louisville Show allows us to showcase our entire product line to all of our dealer partners. It also provides us a great opportunity to showcase our unique manufacturing design by visually showing what’s beneath the sidewall of our motorhomes that provides our dealer partners with a definite market advantage.”

Details

Winnebago Industries, Inc.

winnebago-quality-circle-award-255x144Forest City, Iowa-based Winnebago Industries, Inc., “The Most Recognized Name In Motor Homes”, is a leading U.S. manufacturer of recreation vehicles, which are used primarily in leisure travel and outdoor recreation activities.

The Company builds quality motorhomes, travel trailers, and fifth wheel products under the Winnebago, Itasca, Era, SunnyBrook, and Metro brand names.

Winnebago Industries has received the Quality Circle Award from the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association every year since the award’s inception in 1996.

Postal Address: P.O. Box 152, Forest City, IA 50436

Street Address: 605 West Crystal Lake Road, Forest City, IA 50436

Phone: (641) 585-3535

Winnebago Website: www.gowinnebago.com

Itasca Website: www.goitasca.com

goLife Website: www.winnebagolife.com

Worth Pondering…

Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises.

—Demosthenes

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Thor Motor Coach Introduces New Floor Plans

Elkhart, Indiana-based Thor Motor Coach (TMC) introduced new additions to the Tuscany XTE, Hurricane, Four Winds, Axis, Windsport, Chateau, and Vegas motorhomes at the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) 52nd Annual National RV Trade Show, December 2-4 at the Kentucky Expo Center in Louisville, Kentucky.

2015 Tuscany XTE Diesel Pusher
2015 Tuscany XTE Diesel Pusher

TMC continues to raise the bar on innovation that has customers talking as if the floor plan was custom-made to fit their own personal taste, said Kara Terman, marketing coordinator, in a company news release.

The Tuscany XTE 40AX focuses on entertaining the masses. Reclining theater seats are positioned directly across from a 60-inch LED Smart HDTV. The TV retracts into the counter below when it’s not in use, giving way to a view of the outdoors.

The 40AX also features an additional 40-inch LED TV, which is convenient when sitting down at the dinner table. Preparing meals and storing the leftovers is a breeze with the residential kitchen appliances, standard in every Tuscany XTE motorhome.

“The custom-built Amish cabinetry will amaze and delight, looking like it came out of a coach costing thousands of dollars more,” said Terman.

The Tuscany XTE motorhome lineup gains has added two new floor plans with the addition of the 40BX, the first in the XTE lineup to offer bunk beds. TMC implements a unique three-door arrangement that gives the bunk area complete privacy from the living area of the coach.

2015 Vegas RUV Motorhome
2015 Vegas RUV Motorhome

“Bunk beds have been so popular in gas motorhomes that it only made sense Thor Motor Coach introduced it to their Class A diesels,” she added.

“TMC puts a twist of their own by implementing a unique three-door arrangement that gives the bunk area complete privacy from the living area of the coach. Kids will feel like they truly have a bedroom of their own, especially when it comes time to watching their favorite cartoon or DVD on their own bunk TV.”

Thor Motor Coach has created a better solution to those wanting a coach with two bathrooms, she noted.

The Hurricane and Windsport models now have a “half-and-a-bath” in the 35C floor plan. Instead of placing the full bathroom in the rear and the half bathroom in the middle, they switched the locations.

“People can enjoy true privacy and not have a guests trudging through your bedroom to take a shower,” said Terman.

40BX Tuscany XTE Class A Diesel Motorhome floor plan
40BX Tuscany XTE Class A Diesel Motorhome floor plan

“TMC paid close attention to owners’ needs with this floor plan and created an astounding amount of walk space in the bedroom, a multitude of dresser and closet space, and a variety of sleeping areas.”

TMC didn’t forget the entertainment aspect and answered it with theater seating and the Always-in-View 40-inch LED TV, she explained.

The models also provide theater seating and the “Always-in-View” 40-inch LED TV.

Thor Motor Coach’s “Recreational Utility Vehicle”, referred to as the RUV, continues to grow with the addition of the 25.2, available in Axis and Vegas RUV brands. The RUV is sized like a large SUV, and drives like one, but offers so much more, said Terman.

The 25.2 is the first in the line-up to feature a bedroom slideout that houses a walk-around queen size bed with a Denver Mattress. The L-shaped sofa with a removable pedestal table provides a place to eat, a place to watch TV, or a place to sleep.

“Excitement surrounds the 29G, which is available in both Four Winds and Chateau motorhomes,” said Terman.

“Thor Motor Coach understands Class C owners want convenient and functional amenities outside as much as they do inside. To respond to the demands, they now offer an exterior kitchen as standard on the 29G. The exterior kitchen features a refrigerator, kitchen sink and portable gas grill. To go the extra step, you can opt for an exterior 32-inch TV as well.”

40AX Tuscany XTE Class A Diesel Motorhome floor plan
40AX Tuscany XTE Class A Diesel Motorhome floor plan

“The number one reason people buy one motorhome over another is because the floor plan fit their needs or their lifestyle,” said Gary Stanton, product manager at Thor Motor Coach.

“We continually push ourselves to build new and innovative models for our valued dealer partners. We want them excited about the new line-up and to share their enthusiasm with consumers.”

Details

Thor Motor Coach

Thor Motor Coach was formed when Damon Motor Coach and Four Winds International strategically merged in late 2010. For over 23 years Damon and Four Winds have been building many of the most recognized brands of motorhomes. Thor Motor Coach manufactures Class A Front Engine Diesel motorhomes (Serrano and Avanti), Class A Diesel Pusher motorhomes (Astoria, Tuscany, and Palazzo), Class A Gas motorhomes (A.C.E., Hurricane, Daybreak, Windsport, Challenger, and Outlaw), and Class C motorhomes (Four Winds, Chateau, Siesta, Siesta Sprinter, Citation, and Citation Sprinter).

Thor Motor Coach; North America's Best Selling Motorhome BrandThor Motor Coach is a subsidiary of Thor Industries, Inc., Jackson Center, Ohio, the world’s largest manufacturer of recreational vehicles.

Address: 701 County Road 15, PO Box 1486, Elkhart, Indiana 46516

Phone: (800) 860-5658

Website: thormotorcoach.com

Worth Pondering…

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

—Stephen Covey

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