Newmar’s Super C has the makings of a super star
Newmar Corp. has concentrated on building Class A motorhomes ever since the company exited the fifth-wheel segment in 2012. The lineup includes gassers and pushers, with a higher level of comfort and luxury. In a change of direction, Newmar recently introduced the Super Star 4061, a Super C with all the bells and whistles, and a penchant for adventure.
Super C’s have a few substantial benefits over Class A motorhomes. First, and this is a big one for most owners, chassis service is done from outside the vehicle, which means that technicians don’t have to traipse through the interior. Second, towing capacity is among the highest in the RV industry, with some models as high as 30,000 pounds (the Super Star has a 20,000-pound tow rating). Third, the cab has been designed with long-haul drivers in mind, making it comfortable and convenient. The driver and passenger (and service personnel) can get in and out of the cab without going through the living area.
Everything is within easy reach of the driver. Fourth, handling is responsive, and comfort and road feel are embellished by the ability to sit behind the front axle instead of over it in a Class A. Fifth, these chassis often have saddle tanks for fuel, which means higher capacity and the ability to fill both sides simultaneously at a truck stop island. And lastly, they look cool; who wouldn’t love to drive a semi?
The Inside Scoop
Entering the living space through the side entry door is a grand experience; as a basement-level compartment opens, the custom electric three-step staircase comes out to greet you. The distance between steps is comfortable, which is a good thing because it’s a bit of a climb to get to floor level, although not appreciably more than most diesel A’s. Entry is made easier via a lighted entry handle with an integrated keypad for the power lock system.
See Related Story:
Interior décor is exactly what you’d expect from Newmar: glazed maple cabinetry, ultraleather seating, deluxe tile floors, tile galley backsplash … the list goes on. A choice of three interiors and four wood species ensures the buyer can have an interior that’s attractive and meets their expectations.
The 4061 has a front living area, rear bedroom layout with a side-aisle bath. Extending the slides on the driver and passenger sides, and in the bedroom, opens up the interior dramatically. And to Newmar’s credit, the galley and bathroom are still accessible when the slides are closed, although it is a tight fit.
The optional freestanding solid-surface tabletop and high-quality dining room chairs amp up the class factor; the tabletop extends from a buffet/desk cabinet where the side window provides a great view to the outside. Also contained in the dinette slide is a huge cabinet with storage drawers where a 50-inch Samsung LED 4K TV and sound bar resides.
Storage can be found just about everywhere with wall and base cabinets tucked into logical places. Weight is not much of a factor with this motorhome, so go ahead and fill ’em up! Even the cabover area has extra cabinets, in addition to the large tinted skylight with electrically operated blackout shade. In fact, if you look up from the middle of the cab, you can see the sky.
Across from the dinette are optional matching ultraleather recliners (MSRP $1,386) that sit astride another useful cabinet, with a pull-out cup holder and a long, deep drawer, topped by an armrest-level solid-surface top, which is great for race day goodies, or to set a laptop while catching up on email.
The galley is a mobile gourmet’s delight. The 7-foot solid-surface counter features a double-bowl stainless sink with a high-rise, spring-loaded kitchen faucet. Behind is an optional 6-foot-long window (MSRP $833) that allows views into nature, or of the racetrack, while washing dishes or during meal prep. The sink has matching solid-surface covers to fill in the counterspace and a drip rail keeps messes from spilling behind the recliner. Additionally, spatter cleanup is a breeze with the gray subway tile backsplash.
Soft-close drawers and storage cabinets provide abundant space for keeping a fully equipped and organized galley. Foodstuffs can easily be stored in a floor-to-ceiling pantry by the entry stairs, or a pantry with pull-out wood drawers on the aft side of the refrigerator.
Newmar’s selection of appliances is quite good, featuring an optional Whirlpool 19.7-cubic-foot French-door refrigerator (MSRP $2,334), matching over-the-range Whirlpool microwave/convection oven, three-burner propane cooktop and optional drawer-style dishwasher (MSRP $1,842) below the counter. These residential appliances are functional and attractive, and they can be serviced conveniently at Whirlpool repair facilities.
Opting for the residential refrigerator also adds two extra 6-volt batteries, which allow operation through the 2,000-watt pure-sine-wave inverter. Shorepower and the 8-kW diesel generator can also provide 120-volt AC power.
The use of the same deluxe cabinetry with a solid-surface vanity top can be found in the side-aisle bath. A Dometic electric-macerator porcelain toilet with touch-pad control and faux-marble shower stall with glass door grace the bathroom. Gray subway tile matching that in the galley keeps the wall dry from splashes.
Freightliner M2 chassis, cabinet quality, abundant storage and carrying capacity, 20,000-pound tow rating, overall features and build quality, handling and drivability
For a motorhome this size, the bathroom is pretty tight, and has the feel of the half-bath in some of Newmar’s other coaches. However, trying to add square footage to this bathroom would probably reduce storage and/or make the bathroom inaccessible with the slides retracted. For most people, this concession will be perfectly acceptable. Of the four available floorplans, three have the side-aisle bath. The model 4051 has a bath-and-a-half layout, with a more expansive rear full bath.
The king-bed master bedroom features an optional 72-by-80-inch Sleep Number mattress (MSRP $1,225) that is delightful to sleep on. Mattress firmness can be adjusted for each side using the electronic controls. AC outlets and USB chargers flank the bed, with cabinetry and reading lights above.
The master bedroom has excellent cabinet and wardrobe space. The solid-surface top on the chest of drawers has plenty of space for bedroom sundries, along with an LED TV.
Above is an AV cabinet plus two more storage cabinets. The rear-wall closet features an optional wall-mounted electronic safe (MSRP $455), which is a good place to store valuables, but it interferes with hanging clothes in that part of the closet. A floor-mounted version elsewhere would be a better choice.
Next to the closet are the optional stacked washer and dryer (MSRP $2,310). If these appliances are not selected, there’s even more storage space.
Newmar offers a full array of optional electronics, including a WiFiRanger Sky 3 Pack ($1,092), Winegard Rayzar automatic TV antenna ($588) and a Winegard in-motion satellite system ($1,875), in addition to the three LED TVs.
Operating the systems is relatively convenient using a centralized control center mounted above the entry door, and a multiplex switching system with control pads throughout the interior. For the most part, this configuration worked fine, but locating the HWH leveling system control panel here, instead of close to the driver, was a bit puzzling. But there was no real good spot for it on the dash, and in retrospect, leveling without crawling into the cab turned out to be an asset.
Behind the Wheel
This is where the Super Star stands out from every other Newmar. Behind the wheel, you’re sitting in the cab of the Freightliner Business Class M2 106 chassis, with a 350-hp Cummins ISL diesel mated to an Allison 3200T six-speed automatic transmission. Inside, the air-suspension cab, a Newmar exclusive, supports the back of the cab on a set of air bags, and the back of the cab is connected to the body utilizing a cab-sized accordion boot. Using the adjustment switch on the main control panel (again, not sure why it’s here and not in the cab) allows the user to adjust how much air is in the system, which controls the stiffness of the cab.
Complementing the air-suspension cab are comfortable air-ride captain’s chairs with lumbar adjustment, a burlwood applique on the dash and overhead storage. The steering column has manual tilt and telescoping features; however, smart-wheel technology has not made it to this chassis as yet. Offering Freightliner’s DriveTech technologies in the future will be nice additions.
All the instrumentation and controls are reachable from the driver’s seat, which has inherent benefits over dashboards in Class A’s. Being a truck chassis, it has features like a two-speed engine brake, rear-axle differential lock and DOT courtesy flash. The M2 has dash air conditioning and heat registers, and power locks and windows, but because of the steering column design, speed control switches are dashboard-mounted. The Allison transmission is controlled from a dash-mounted touchpad.
The double-DIN Xite dash touchscreen AM/FM/CD stereo is a Newmar exclusive and features Rand McNally RV navigation. Sirius XM is also available as a $245 option. Bluetooth connectivity is supported for phone calls and audio streaming, but it was a bit tricky to operate. Having the RV navigation is certainly helpful, although it would be nice to see this upgraded to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto operability. There are too many RV and navigation smartphone app options available to leave out this feature. Of course, the automotive dash configuration allows fairly simple upgrading to a Pioneer, Kenwood or other good-quality aftermarket double-DIN head unit.
The Super Star chassis has an air-dump valve located on the dash for use while parked, which allows the HWH hydraulic leveling system more room for extension to level on uneven ground.
The 350 horses managed to move this puppy down the road pretty nicely. Both on-highway and backroad handling was responsive, smooth and, frankly, felt easier than it should, which is typical of a Super C. The air suspension kept sway to a minimum, and the 52-degree wheel cut was pretty impressive when turning around obstacles and negotiating corners. We tested this in a large parking lot in Elkhart, Indiana, driving down paths and around islands meant for automobiles, and found we could put this nearly 41-foot motorhome anywhere we wanted.
The Outside Story
The exterior of the Super Star has standard full BASF body paint; the vehicle we tested sports the Largo décor of silver, blue and black. Two other paint combinations are available.
Full basement storage ensures that you can use the nearly 4,000 pounds of ROCCC. An optional outside entertainment center (MSRP $2,129) with a 43-inch LED TV is hidden behind one of these basement doors, so watching the race under the dual Girard automatic cantilevered awnings is pleasant.
There’s a lot of componentry sequestered in the basement, but as expected with a Newmar product, everything is well-situated. Compartments are lined with Ozite carpeting, which is utilitarian and attractive.
The main storage is all the way aft, and while the storage is bisected horizontally by the chassis frame, there is carpeted storage above and below the rails, accessible from both side doors and a rear entry door. An optional large storage tray (MSRP $693) makes accessing gear much easier. The rear hatch opens up to a compartment atop the frame rails and is large enough for skis or other long items. Above it is a utility shed, of sorts, for small outside items.
As with other trucks, the hood tilts forward for total engine access, which makes maintenance more palatable. When closed, the view over the hood while driving is excellent.
The Final Word
Newmar (800-731-8300) has long been known for exceptional diesel-pusher motorhomes, and that legacy is extended to the Super Star. The fit, finish and attention to detail is outstanding throughout the coach. If you’re looking for a diesel-powered motorhome with a macho image and classy interior, the Newmar Super Star 4061 certainly fits the bill.
Model Freightliner M2-106
Engine Cummins ISL-9
SAE Hp 350 hp @ 2,000 rpm
Torque 1,000 lb-ft @ 1,400 rpm
Transmission 6-speed automatic
Axle Ratio 4.89:1
Brakes Front/Rear Air with four-wheel ABS
Suspension Front/Rear Leaf and air springs
Fuel Capacity 100 gal
Fuel Economy 9 mpg (est)
Warranty 2 years/unlimited miles
Engine 5 years/100,000 miles
Transmission: 5 years/unlimited miles
Exterior Length 40′ 11″
Exterior Width 8′ 5″
Exterior Height 13′ 2″
Interior Width 8′
Interior Height 6′ 11″
Construction Aluminum frame with exterior gelcoat and fiberglass batten
insulation/one-piece fiberglass roof
with batten insulation/ 5⁄8-inch floor decking
Freshwater Capacity 150 gal
Black-water Capacity 40 gal
Gray-water Capacity 60 gal
Water-heater Capacity 10 gal
Propane Capacity 32 gal
Air Conditioner (2) 15,000 Btu
Furnace 40,000 Btu
Refrigerator 19.7-cu-ft residential
Inverter/Charger 2,000-watt, 105-amp
Batteries (6) 6-volt
AC Generator 8 kW diesel
MSRP as Tested $381,198
Warranty 1 year/unlimited miles,
5 years structural
(Water and water heater, fuel, propane tanks full; no supplies or passengers)
Total 34,300 lbs
Maximum trailer weight 20,000 lbs
GAWR, F/R 16,000 lbs/24,000 lbs
GVWR/GCWR 39,600 lbs/60,000 lbs
ROCCC 3,967 lbs
GAWR Gross Axle Weight Rating
GVWR Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
GCWR Gross Combination Weight Rating
ROCCC Realistic Occupant and Cargo Carrying
Capacity (full water, no passengers)