New 2018 models offer improved livability and the latest in on-board technology
While December means family get-togethers, gift exchanges and holiday playlists to most, we here at MotorHome get excited for yet another reason: a new model year is upon us. True, many models have already been introduced over the last couple of months, but the festive season means even more complete information (and hands-on opportunity) is available from the manufacturers, enabling us to further showcase the latest trends, models and upgrades.
The Class C segment has enjoyed a strong, consistent performance throughout 2017, with the most recent report as of press time pegging a 23 percent growth in shipments over the previous year. Class C’s are a solid choice for RVers who want all the amenities of a Class A, but prefer the familiar ride and handling characteristics of a cutaway (truck or van) chassis. And as they continue to include (or even surpass) the features of Class A models, we have selected a handful of the top entries for the 2018 model year.
Coach House Inc.
Coach House motorhomes are sold direct from the factory in Nokomis, Florida. The 2018 272XL FR features two slideouts, one in front containing dual power recliners, and the other in the rear, housing the queen bed. The brand-new dual front recliners (hence the FR designation) feature individual swivel tray tables that provide for dining or other activities and then swing out of the way when it’s time to recline and watch TV. The 272XL FR is available with an optional extended galley that provides the choice of more food-prep and cabinet space, or an additional swivel-recliner, which affords a great viewing angle of the standard 32-inch HD TV. The galley includes a three-way refrigerator, a convection microwave, stainless-steel sink, solid-surface counters and abundant cabinetry. The roomy bathroom features a shower, porcelain toilet and lavatory sink. Like all Platinum motorhomes, the 272XL FR is built with a one-piece fiberglass shell reinforced with carbon fiber, resulting in a motorhome that is noticeably quieter and more durable than others in its class, according to the company. Platinum motorhomes come equipped with a long list of standard features, including a generator, auxiliary batteries, hitch receiver, stainless-steel wheel simulators, nav system, LED lighting and many more.
Coach House Inc.
The newly redesigned Orion T24 RB provides flexibility and versatility thanks to its eco-friendly and fuel-efficient Ford Transit chassis powered by a 3.7-liter, V-6 gas engine. As its designation implies (the T is for Traveler), the Orion is easy to maneuver on the road, and its tight turning radius makes parking at the campground or the market a snap. The Orion comes equipped with standard features such as a roomy rear bath that runs the width of the motorhome, an electric actuated queen bed up front, Euro-style dinette with belted swivel chairs and flip-up dinette, and a three-way refrigerator in the galley. Additional features include a pantry in the galley, a 32-inch LCD TV with DVD player, large undermount galley sink and backup monitor on the rearview mirror. Outside, color-infused laminated side walls and a molded fiberglass front and rear cap give the Orion 24 RB a contemporary look with long-lasting exterior construction. Additional exterior features include an armless power awning, exterior entertainment center, LED lights and a standard Onan generator.
For improved ride and handling, Jayco has equipped the 2018 Greyhawk Prestige 29MVP with the company’s JRide Plus package, which includes Hellwig Helper Springs, rubber isolation mounts, a computer-balanced driveshaft, front and rear stabilizers and Bilstein shock absorbers. Highlights include a 30-by-82-inch panoramic front window, walk-around queen bed and 16-foot awning. Also of note are an 84-inch-high padded ceiling, vinyl flooring, a Dream Dinette, solid-surface countertops and a water-filtration system. The cab’s Garmin Infotainment system (RV GPS/AM/FM Bluetooth plus removable 6-inch touchscreen display) is part of the Customer Value Package, which also nets owners a 24-inch LED TV in the bedroom, plus an exterior entertainment center, frameless windows and automatic hydraulic leveling jacks, to name a few. Overnight guests are treated to a standard tri-fold sofa in the living area, while an optional drop-down cab overhead bunk is also available.
Leisure Travel Vans
The Wonder Front Twin Bed (FTB) is Leisure Travel Van’s new Class C featuring a front twin-bed design that allows owners to customize their sleeping configuration. The W24MB features two 32-by-76-inch twin beds that can also slide together to form a single bed that’s wider than a residential queen. The beds double as the seating area and offer a great view of the swing-out 28-inch LED TV with Bluetooth sound bar and Blu-ray player. The galley is located amidships and has been outfitted with a two-door 6.7-cubic-foot fridge and convection microwave, allowing for plenty of storage space on the large solid-surface countertop. The large rear bathroom includes a 30-by-32-inch enclosed shower, making it easy for two people to prep for a night on the town. Interior storage is impressive, with ample European-style cabinets galore featuring accent doors designed to be scratch-resistant, anti-fingerprint and even antibacterial. The Wonder rides on the Ford Transit cutaway chassis and is powered by a 3.2-liter Power Stroke turbodiesel. The vehicle features contoured side walls, a fiberglass flex roof, and integrated front and rear fiberglass caps.
Leisure Travel Vans,
Triple E Recreational Vehicles
Phoenix USA RV
Based in Elkhart, Indiana, Phoenix USA RV has been manufacturing factory-direct, easy-to-drive motorhomes for nearly two decades. The company currently offers nine floorplans, all on a chassis that is only 93 inches wide for increased maneuverability. Phoenix motorhomes begin with a basic layout that can be customized based on the buyer’s needs. The Phoenix Cruiser 2552 shown here is a twin-bed layout with a bathroom that spans the full rear wall. The single slide opens up the living area, and contains the refrigerator, seating area and overhead storage. The rear bathroom is equipped with a corner shower, sink and lav, plus a wardrobe, while both twin beds have their own shirt closet and overhead storage areas. The living room can be configured with a booth dinette or a sofa with a pantry and slide-out bin storage. Buyers can also opt for a Euro chair in addition to the sofa or booth. Phoenix offers a popular convenience package that contains the most sought-after living conveniences, including a 4-kW Onan generator, 13,500-Btu A/C with heat strip, Class III hitch receiver, leather captain’s chairs, a convection microwave, a 32-inch LED smart TV, DSI gas and electric water heater, carbon-fiber dash and drink tray, electric entry step, and heated and remote outside mirrors, to name a few. Phoenix says the longer wheelbase of its motorhomes translates to a shorter overhang in the rear, adding to on-road stability. All Phoenix Cruisers come standard with LED interior lighting and an 1,800-watt inverter.
Phoenix USA RV
Perhaps known primarily for its Class B’s (see test on page 40) Pleasure-Way has transferred that success into the easy-handling 2018 Plateau XLTS Class C. The Plateau XLTS boasts luxurious finishes, a spacious and well-appointed bathroom, a flexible and comfortable dining/sleeping arrangement, and generous inside and outside storage, all in a relatively compact package. The floorplan’s main attraction is the rear power sofa bed with two lap belts that is easily converted into a 74-by-74-inch memory-foam sleeper. Three large windows in the rear lounge area offer panoramic views of the surroundings, while two front workstations and a full-size bathroom make the Plateau a good choice for interior versatility. The list of upscale standard equipment includes 200Ah Lithium-ion auxiliary batteries, a Truma AquaGo Comfort Plus on-demand water heater, and dual 7-inch touch-screen control panels provide automatic temperature control and auto generator start, plus the lighting control/dimming, tank level indicators and awning control. All countertops are solid-surface and all furniture is ultraleather, while solid-maple cabintery comes standard on all Pleasure-Way motorhomes.
Renegade’s Valencia is built on the S2RV chassis from Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp., which Renegade claims is the first Super C chassis to be designed from the ground up specifically as a motorhome chassis. The Valencia boasts impressive horsepower and torque compared to Freightliner’s M2 chassis, but don’t let its brutish construction fool you: The Valencia is said to have superior ride and handling characteristics resulting from its custom-tuned front and rear suspension system. In addition, the chassis has a single 100-gallon fuel tank mounted in the rear between the frame rails, offering greater fuel capacity, better cruising range and easier fueling via a single fuel fill on the driver’s side of the coach. Inside, the Valencia has been outfitted with solid cherry hardwood cabinetry and trim. The motorhome is available in two floorplans, including the 38RW shown here, which sleeps up to nine and features an overhead bunk, dinette and sofa in the living area, and standard king bed and large wardrobe in the master. Nearly all amenities are standard, from the full-body paint, to the stainless-steel appliances (including a 19-cubic-foot residential refrigerator), to solid-surface countertops to the dual 15,000-Btu roof air conditioners with heat pumps. Other highlights include an upgraded cab sound system, color side- and rear-vision cameras, upgraded LED lighting, a 40-inch LED TV with a soundbar home theater system and Blu-ray player in the living room, plus a 32-inch LED TV in the bedroom and standard outside entertainment center.
Thor Motor Coach
If you’re looking to bring along motorcycles, ATVs or even a snowmobile, the Thor Outlaw 29J is a Class C toy hauler with a drop-down queen-size bunk in the garage area and luxurious appointments throughout. The 8-by-8-foot garage also houses a storage area and a 32-inch LED TV, plus it acts as the gateway to the rugged patio deck that allows owners to further enjoy their outdoor adventure environment. The full galley offers all the comforts of a conventional Class C, including a 6-cubic-foot refrigerator, microwave convection oven, large single-basin sink and pantry. A pop-up countertop outlet and charging station in the galley is evocative of more expensive motorhomes, as are the porcelain toilet in the lav, the on-demand water heater and whole-coach water filtration system. The 29J includes a total of four TVs (including one in the exterior entertainment center), meaning the big game is never too far from front and center, while a stereo system in the garage keeps the tunes playing. Nice touches up front include swivel leatherette captain’s chairs, a touchscreen dash stereo and a windshield privacy curtain. Also standard is a ladder for the overhead bunk, while a cabover child safety net is an available option.
Thor Motor Coach
Tiffin Motorhomes Inc.
Yes, you read that right. Tiffin, long known for its quality Class A motorhomes, recently entered the Class C market with the introduction of the Wayfarer. Built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis, the Wayfarer 24 BW is highlighted by the large rear bedroom, which sports a queen bed with memory foam mattress, two deep nightstands and two wardrobes, with plenty of space to walk around. There’s also an optional entertainment center or bunk-bed configuration. The split bathroom puts the 32-by-34-inch shower curbside, while lav, sink and overhead storage are streetside. The fully equipped galley offers a sink, two-burner stovetop and microwave, plus a 5-cubic-foot gas/electric refrigerator. Thoughtful appointments like on-demand hot water, solid-wood curved cabinetry, LED lighting and Spyder multiplex wiring, speak to Tiffin’s tradition of upscale amenities inside, while the exterior features two seamless slideouts to help prevent leaks, a fiberglass roof, Durashield Titan rock-chip protection and full-body paint to round out the look of luxury while increasing longevity. An exterior TV takes care of campsite entertainment, while a standard 3.2-kW diesel generator keeps the power flowing. The Wayfarer is equipped with SumoSprings ride assist to help smooth out the bumps. The standard Driver Assistance Package provides lane-keeping assist, collision prevention and high-beam assist. And, at less than 26 feet in length, the Wayfarer is easy to drive and handle on the road or in camp.
Tiffin Motorhomes Inc.
Winnebago Industries Inc.
The new Winnebago View 24D expands the living space with the touch of a button opening a large slideout and powered Murphy-plus bed, resulting in a versatile floorplan with extra sleeping space for a couple of overnight guests. A full galley makes meal prep easy, while swivel cab seats provide additional seating options in the lounge and dining area. The slide also houses the dinette and the Murphy bed, which folds up during the day and, combined with the removable table, becomes a comfortable seating area to view the TV, which is located directly across on the galley wall. Speaking of the galley, it offers a large amount of counterspace, a dual-basin sink, cooktop, microwave and refrigerator, plus a pantry to hold your foodstuffs. The rear full-wall bathroom is sectioned off via a sliding door, and offers a 23-by-34-inch shower, sink, lav and wardrobe. A powered patio awning enables owners to take the festivities outside in the fresh air. But perhaps the main attraction is the View’s diminutive stature, allowing RVers to travel in comfort most anywhere without worrying about size restrictions.
Winnebago Industries Inc.