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Old 06-07-2017, 08:28 PM   #1
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Thor 21-foot Class A

Tease or misprint?


Hard to say given information isn't always accurate. Would not be a first by a long shot, but we haven't seen one that short from US manufacturer in a long time as far as I recall.
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Old 06-09-2017, 04:37 AM   #2
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Thats a misleading ad if I ever saw one. It suggests to me that for $103,000 I could buy a 21' class A motor home that sleeps 1. Sure wouldn't get me to the RV lot.
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:32 AM   #3
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What is the difference between ThorIndustries.com and ThorMotorCoach.com?
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Old 06-09-2017, 11:23 AM   #4
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Thor Industries is the corporate name for the overall RV manufacturing business, including towables and fifth wheels such as Airstream, Jayco, Redwood, Dutchmen, Bison, Crossroads, DRV, etc.
Thor Motor Coach is the subsidiary that builds anything with a motor included, such as the Palazzo, Tuscany, Axis, Challenger, etc., and ClassA, ClassC, and RUV types. And, yes, there is a 21' ClassC.
Entegra is also a new 'motorized' diesel coach division now part of the Thor Industries family of companies from it's purchase of Jayco.

There are a LOT of types and models to choose from in the Thor brand.
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Old 06-09-2017, 12:24 PM   #5
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As part of the same general RV selection guide, they also list Pros and Cons to Class As, which in my opinion would be so very different if applied to a 45-ft diesel pusher versus a 21-foot Class A.

Even though both may technically be Class As, comparing the Pros and Cons of 21-versus 45-ft coaches directly (on same list) is misleading. Whether it's suitability for full-time living, fuel economy, ease of driving, ease of storage, having to tow a second vehicle, etc., the Pros/Cons should be more size related than "Class A" related. The entire document doesn't appear that well thought out or organized.

Having said that, it is interesting that Thor has not only been aware of the need for smaller products (CEO has mentioned it a few times), but that they seem to have had good success with them as well. The Axis/Vegas has sold well, the Airstream tiny Basecamp was redesigned and reintroduced, winning an RV of the Year 2017 award, and Jayco just came out with the Ultra Light "all-new" compact Hummingbird trailer towable by smaller vehicles.

I doubt a 21-foot Class A will happen, but if it does I'd expect it under the Jayco brand. Last year there was a report that Jayco was looking at building smaller Class As, possibly on E-Series chassis like the Axis and Vegas. Maybe Thor just wants to beat Hymer to the North America market in this Class A size range.

Personally, I'd be very interested to see how Thor (or any US manufacturer) would approach designing a modern Class A that small.
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Old 06-09-2017, 12:49 PM   #6
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Thats a misleading ad if I ever saw one. It suggests to me that for $103,000 I could buy a 21' class A motor home that sleeps 1. Sure wouldn't get me to the RV lot.
I think you hit on the real issue -- price.

If $103,000 was MSRP, then it could sell for around $70k, in same range as Axis and Vegas of a couple of years ago. That would actually compete favorably on price with many Class Bs, which are the fastest growing segment in motorized RVs.

Because of the way motorhomes are built from the inside out (except Class Bs), I expect Thor could build a 21-foot Class A with similar content as a Class B for less cost. The result could be many of the advantages of a "B" with added space, particularly in outside storage.

It's a price shocker when you start looking at some of the newer Class Bs which are more expensive than much larger Class As. A simple, light, fuel-efficient and inexpensive Class A may be what they need to slow Bs and Cs stealing market share from As.
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Old 06-09-2017, 04:24 PM   #7
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I don't think many people would buy a Class A of 21' just for the sake of having a Class A. There are usually very specific reasons for their choices. I see very little advantage myself in a 21' Class A vs a Class C or RUV. I think after about three years the used market would be flooded with Mini Class A's. If I were the manufacturer I would hold off on developing that market until I saw a definite trend in that direction as well as safety statistics.
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Old 06-09-2017, 07:47 PM   #8
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You may be 100% correct, but at same time I find it revealing that in Europe they sell Class As and Cs in the same size range alongside each other (like we do 25~32' here), suggesting buyers have different preferences regardless of size. A 21-foot Class A may indeed be a complete flop in North America -- although successful in other markets. I don't know but expect much depends on how good the design is.

If small 20~24 foot As and Cs were available in same price range, are we saying most buyers would go with the Cs?

Looking at Hymer's website again to see what such a short Class A could look like, I found it interesting that they market the same model, the Exsis, in both Class A and B+. For me, based on pictures, it would be a very tough choice between the two. The A looks more open, the B+/C more functional.

I think this tiny A is just under 20 feet. The ones around 23-feet don't look quite as stubby.
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Old 06-09-2017, 07:51 PM   #9
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This is the B+ version of what appears a very similar coach.
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Old 06-10-2017, 12:01 AM   #10
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I have to say those are pretty nice looking rigs. I wonder how they would drive with the height of the Class A and such a short wheel base. Think I would rather be a bit closer to the ground for more stability but it doesn't look like the B+ is much lower than the A. It also looks like the B+ is actually closer to a RUV than a full van bodied B+. Interesting.
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Old 06-10-2017, 01:08 AM   #11
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All this A, B, B+, C talk kind of drives me nutty. Can anyone actually define the difference?
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Old 06-10-2017, 01:55 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by KNMIB View Post
All this A, B, B+, C talk kind of drives me nutty. Can anyone actually define the difference?
I consider those abbreviated references as:
A - RV box built on a bare chassis
B - Van body from front to rear outfitted with RV stuff
B+ - Cut-away van chassis with a box built onto it from the cab up & back but doesn't hang over the cab
C - Cut away van chassis with a box built onto it that hangs over the cab windshield and sort of looks like a C from the side
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Old 06-10-2017, 02:38 AM   #13
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We recently returned from a two week trip to Germany, saw many RVs that I guess would be considered a class A, most were in the 20-25' range. Narrow roads, tight parking, etc. dictate coach sizes in Europe.
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:10 AM   #14
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As we were looking for a smallish Class A....C, B+ or whatever specific 'class' I kept asking where is the 'Airstreamish'' unit?.... I might be willing to pay quite a bit more for a higher quality, more unique and branded unit...a sweet spot, kind of an Acura. Not Honda but a mass priced, fuller featured and dare I say more prestigious unit. (Full disclosure, we own a Acura MDX)... I don't think data shows anything new more than 34 ft is selling super well....the niche people want and need is in the 24-28 ft range with high end features...list price of $130-140k I truly believe will work for all!
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Old 06-10-2017, 04:05 AM   #15
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I have to say those are pretty nice looking rigs. I wonder how they would drive with the height of the Class A and such a short wheel base. Think I would rather be a bit closer to the ground for more stability but it doesn't look like the B+ is much lower than the A. It also looks like the B+ is actually closer to a RUV than a full van bodied B+. Interesting.

The two Exsis rigs pictured above are actually much lower than you would think based on pictures. The chassis are front wheel drive Fiat Ducato, and are listed at 87.5 inches wide and just over 9 feet tall (although that height may not include a roof A/C). The short length probably makes them look taller. They are the same or lower than a Transit or Sprinter high-roof van.

If standard Ducato/ProMaster high-roof vans are any indication, I'd bet these units are very easy to drive and handle great. I've been passed by ProMaster (Ducato) vans going 75 MPH in windy conditions and they appeared very stable. I doubt these little RVs would need chassis updates to satisfy most owners.

Looking at other pictures, the short 19 foot Class A do look stubby, while the 23 footers look much more balanced in appearance. Maybe 21-feet is a good compromise.


Another issue: Will most Americans even consider motorhomes with single rear wheels the same size as those of pickups? I really like MHs small and light enough for SRWs, but think too many North Americans will have an issue with it.
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Old 06-10-2017, 06:23 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TyCreek View Post
I consider those abbreviated references as:
A - RV box built on a bare chassis
B - Van body from front to rear outfitted with RV stuff
B+ - Cut-away van chassis with a box built onto it from the cab up & back but doesn't hang over the cab
C - Cut away van chassis with a box built onto it that hangs over the cab windshield and sort of looks like a C from the side
Lots of confusion over the RUV and B+ classification. Ours, Gemini 23TR is classed as a RUV. Don't know if thats the same as a B+ for other manufacturers.
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Old 06-10-2017, 06:34 AM   #17
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Another issue: Will most Americans even consider motorhomes with single rear wheels the same size as those of pickups? I really like MHs small and light enough for SRWs, but think too many North Americans will have an issue with it.
With the weight and the overhang behind the wheels I think a blow out could be about the same as a carnival ride. Probably with a worse outcome. To me the duel rear wheels are a safety issue I would not like to be without. Don't like dealing with them but I will trade that for what I perceive as a safety feature.
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Old 06-10-2017, 09:56 AM   #18
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Note that RUV is just something Thor made up for marketing. Axis/Vegas units are basically little Class-As (granted the whole "class" thing is something the RV industry made up as well).
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Old 06-10-2017, 10:46 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
Note that RUV is just something Thor made up for marketing. Axis/Vegas units are basically little Class-As (granted the whole "class" thing is something the RV industry made up as well).
Totally agree! Gotta have some kinda of gimmick to make sales!
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Old 06-10-2017, 11:51 AM   #20
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Note that RUV is just something Thor made up for marketing. Axis/Vegas units are basically little Class-As (granted the whole "class" thing is something the RV industry made up as well).
Absolutely. I still don't see the additional "utility" in Thor's line of Recreational Utility Vehicle as they compare to other RV products.

I think some marketing genius decided that since making a motorhome smaller made them more useful, like being able to attend soccer games with the kids on weekends, they gave it a name worthy of reinventing the wheel.
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