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Open Roads Forum  >  Class C Motorhomes

 > Class C vs. Class A gassers

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ron.dittmer

Northern Illinois

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Posted: 08/02/12 09:31am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Back in 2006/2007 when I started to look at replacing our old Toyota chassis motor home, I saw a few brand new class-A's in $49k-$54k price range. They surely offer a grand view out the front, and more outdoor storage. But some very important matters quickly shy'd me away.

- the mechanicals related to the chassis like the dash board, under-hood, etc. was very poorly assembled using poor quality materials and poor wiring methods and connections. Those low end rigs looked like they'd be coming apart after 25,000 miles. Since we are long term RV owners with plans for 30+ years with the rig we bought, long term reliability was very concerning.
- quality, construction of the structure was lowest grade, including windows, the only door, storage compartments, etc. with concern of water getting in under strong storm conditions. Fit and finish fell short as well.
- quality of the interior, finish and materials were poor. I was concerned for trouble during trips, having to make interior repairs along the way.
- a common overwhelming production material or chemical odor from such interior finish materials had me nearly passing out. I couldn't breathe in a class-A that was closed up. I was very concerned for my health.

I suppose an entry level class-A would be worth consideration if I planned to own it a short time, as long as I wasn't sensitive to the odor.

Years ago, my wife and I stayed at my cousin's house who owned a 5th wheel. We slept in the 5th on his driveway. It was maybe 5 years old at the time, yet that same odor was present. We had the windows open which made it managable, but I was still affected by that chemical odor for the duration of the visit and a few days after.

If you step in a brand new rig of any kind, and the odor inside affects your respiration, don't think it's only temporary.

BTW, in the end we spent $67K on a new quality built B+, roughly $15k more than an entry level class-A. That was the wisest $15k extra we ever spent.


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tatest

Oklahoma Green Country

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Posted: 08/02/12 09:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had to pass on the low-cost A because the wife could not get used to sitting right behind a big window with no structure close around her. She couldn't ride in the right front seat of a motorcoach, either, although she was fine with the seat behind the driver.

I had Hurricane, Mirada and Sightseer models at the top of my shopping list in 2004 (I eventually ruled out the Mirada of that vintage after close inspection), but she just couldn't handle the right front seat and would not consider riding anywhere in back.


Tom Test
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Gale Hawkins

Murray, KY

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Posted: 08/02/12 12:21pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The enhanced safety of a Class A I think is in part to their height in certain types of accidents plus they must be safer because that is what we own.

A past killer in about any type MH is the cabinets behind the drivers head and other masses that can become missles.

Another factor is the class C does not have a crunch zone in front of the chassis frame like most A's do to lessen the initial G forces.

Now if semi does a head own with either a C or A then it may be lights out time.

In the end one should just get the rig they prefer based on needs and abilities or stay home deep in a cave and hope there is no earthquake.

taiwin

sugarland, texas

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Posted: 08/02/12 12:39pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a small class c 24 ft and was considering to upsize. On my last trip to garner state park (texas) my genset was having problems and we have to rely on cab AC only. It's really hot here in south Texas. To my surprise the cab AC was plenty enough to cool my small space. My friend on the other hand have a 33 ft hurricane class a and cannot survive in this heat if his genset was broken. Bigger doesn't always mean better.

Dakzuki

Carnation, Wa, USA

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Posted: 08/02/12 03:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here is a class C vs auto head on.


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AO_hitech

SF Bay Area

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Posted: 08/02/12 05:02pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The availability of parts. The class c is just a ford (or Chevy) E450/350. The auto parts store doesn't even need to know it is a MH.




mlts22

Austin, Texas

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Posted: 08/02/12 05:14pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Dakzuki wrote:

Here is a class C vs auto head on.


Wow, that Sprinter class C (the headlights give it away) took two hits and the passengers were not even needing the ambulance.

From what I know, since the class C is on a cutaway van chassis, the airbags and other items tend to be present. A class A may or may not have those features, as the RV maker builds everything atop of the chassis, including airbags or other safety systems (if any.)

Class Cs have a baseline of safety, while a class A can be excellent on down.

Skip N Barb Team

Dickinson, Texas

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Posted: 08/02/12 05:32pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

O.P....here.

Thanks for the replies. I understand the safety aspect, but if we bought our rigs on just safety, wouldn't that limit our choices?

I'm really more interested in gas mileage, mobility in state parks, and storage space. Also, how about any ride difference, and maintenance cost for general upkeep.

Have anyone gone from an A to a C, or vise, versa,and if so, what was your reasons.

Thanks to all.

Skip

tpi

Southern CA.

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Posted: 08/02/12 07:50pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I went with a 24' C for mobility purposes. Its big enough for me, the tanks and refrigerator are large, and it fits in many national forest campsites.

Regarding mobility, best bet is to check the campgrounds you want to visit and see what kind of rigs are in there.

Some govt campgrounds here in CA are quite old, in mountainous terrain, designed for car camping, and not typically frequented by larger RVs.





mlts22

Austin, Texas

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Posted: 08/02/12 09:59pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you want MPG with a class C, I'd recommend looking at Sprinter based class Cs which get mid to upper teens, although there will be a cost difference. There are always downsides, and there are a number of posts about the good/bad/ugly of Sprinters versus Ford van cutouts. It really depends on what you want/need.

If you want a class C with mobility, Phoenix Cruiser has Quigley converted 4x4 class Cs available. It won't rock the gnarly terrain on Moab, but it will be able to go to some fairly remote spots.

If you want storage space, you can always tow a trailer. The nice thing about a small trailer is that it can be used to reserve your place while you are gone. Most 24-26' rigs will have similar storage space in volume. Cargo-wise, Fords will tend to have more CCC than the Sprinters.

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