Southwind 37C

Even the most fashionable and enduring motorhomes need to be spiffed up now and then to
maintain consumer appeal and commercial viability. When Fleetwood decided to update its
venerable Southwind motorcoach, the company could have elected to freshen up its profile
with contemporary aerodynamic styling or added new graphics or upgraded the interior or
even included flush-floor slideouts to increase spaciousness. Instead, the company chose
Option E: All of the above. As with the 2003 overhaul of its Pace Arrow marque, Fleetwood’s
updated Southwind 37C bears more than a passing resemblance to upscale diesel-pusher units
in both looks and finish. As the largest and most well-equipped of three Southwind
floorplans available in 2005, it cuts a dashing profile with its swoopier, aerodynamic
front end, larger windshield for increased visibility, distinctive headlamps and
high-mounted taillight clusters, and optional full-body paint and exterior graphics
packages. The 37C’s spacious flush-floor, triple-slide layout is loaded with standard and
optional niceties that endow it with the feel of a well-equipped townhouse. Storage on this
model, both inside and out, is generous in terms of cubic volume. Numerous exterior bays
are relatively shallow but provide cargo options, and most compartments move with the
slideouts. Besides a fresh floorplan, our unit sported a Workhorse W22 chassis with GM’s
brawny 8.1-l V-8, and an Allison 5-speed transmission. Unfortunately, our specific unit was
one of the first 2005 Southwinds to roll off the line, and Workhorse was a few weeks behind
in supplying its latest W-Series chassis updates. Consequently, we did not have the benefit
of Bilstein shocks, which are now standard on this rail set, and a Transmission Grade
Braking feature that makes downshifting on steep descents a matter of flipping a dashboard
switch and tapping the brake pedal for each gear reduction. Fleetwood’s Southwind 37C can
confidently challenge the open road with power and precision, while supporting users in
residential fashion. For full details and test impressions on the Southwind 37C’, pick up
the April 2005 issue of MotorHome magazine on the newsstand — then subscribe to MotorHome so you can
stay informed on the latest motorhome tests and previews, products and technical
information, and travel info. Fleetwood Enterprises, (800) 444-4905, fleetwoodrv.com

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