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Old 08-24-2005, 05:22 PM   #1
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If you were to replace your existing Winnebago RV would you choose another Winnebago product? If so why and if not why ? Please no bashing just your first thoughts.
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Old 08-24-2005, 05:22 PM   #2
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If you were to replace your existing Winnebago RV would you choose another Winnebago product? If so why and if not why ? Please no bashing just your first thoughts.
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Old 08-24-2005, 05:30 PM   #3
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When we bought our rig we had a short list of about 6 items. Only Winnebago had all of them.

Our list:
Class A
Diesel pusher
80" full queen bed
fiberglass roof
Central basement air
full body paint
Welded steel cage front end

We got all of that, at a very good price and a bunch of other things that we now know abouut but did not realize at the time how great they would be -- like the power management system.

If we did the same process today, I doubt we find other choices. But, we love our rig and plan on keeping it permanently.

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Old 08-24-2005, 07:25 PM   #4
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I guess this is one I can answer precisely - no guesses of what "I might do." Today we did do. We traded for a Holiday Rambler Ambassador 40PLQ.

We took a hard look at the Winnies again. Our 39W (which has been a headache but everything seems to be fixed now) is really not that great for 3 people. If you open the Rest Easy you can't get by the bed without crawling over it and it really constrains the lounge chair. One shallow slide in the LR/galley was an error on our part. Fine when travelling but not good when sitting for any time.

We looked at the Journey and Tour (somewhat garish in our view). Vectra/Horizon - really overpriced in our view. My wife did like the 36G but the bedroom was just too small (the 40PLQ has a huge bedroom - nothing like it in any MH in this price range).

We think there are a few Winnie features we'd like such as the auto door locks on the coach door and basement doors. We did get a 3 camera system that is great, one piece windshield, huge pass through basement (Winnie botched it in our view by putting StoreMore on curb side), and a lot of features that are standard that must be added to Winnie or are just not available (front Mask, manual cord reel for 50 amp cord, slide out generator tray [n/a on Journey], rear window, hide-a-bed with air mattress, 4 6v batteries in an enclosed compartment with slide out tray, [every Winnie battery compartment we've looked at is filhty, not in the HR), wood floor, etc).

It was a bit of a painful move in that while we've had a lot of headaches with our Journey over the past 15 months, in the end the items were fixed (3rd try for some) and the people at Winnie were pretty helpful. Our HR dealer is also our Winnie dealer - for better or for worse). We concluded that Winnie had really fallen behind in floor plan options.

This is an identical model to ours - color, interior and exterior, and most options. We just love that bedroom.

40PLQ photos (step through photos)

So, in a week we leave the Winnie family - but if there is a next time around we will certainly look at Winnie again provided they enhance their floor plans and correct their storage deficiency. We certainly hope that our 40PLQ will not have as many initial flaws as our Journey - but that remains to be seen.
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Old 08-25-2005, 04:34 PM   #5
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That's a great looking setup Don (the Holiday Rambler).

A rear window is sometihng I'd like on our Adventurer. National does them with basement A/C and a big endcap, they even advertise it as a bay window. Looks like Holiday Rambler splits the difference, with a bit of a recess both inside and out.

Earlier this summer we took a closer look at a few coaches in the Journey line, don't think we saw one that would fit our son's crib. It fits, albeit tightly, in our 31Y. Add that to the same livingroom as a 36G, and we're staying put, no reason to go bigger.

About that bedroom, a few months back, could have been a year or more I guess, Gaylord Maxwell was looking for ideas for the ideal large coach in Motorhome magazine. I emailed him with some comments on making bedrooms more useable in the daytime, one being a murphy bed. The idea was bedroom by night, den by day. Imagine my surprise when I saw the latest Newell ads, featuring a bedroom with a murphy bed!
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Old 08-25-2005, 07:10 PM   #6
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Definitely not another Winnebago. KIWI must have gotten a good one. Our 2004 is 19 months old and we're still fighting problems. Don't know what I'd choose at this time, but not another Winnie.
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Old 08-25-2005, 07:22 PM   #7
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Old 08-26-2005, 01:24 AM   #8
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After doing many,many PDIs I'd still take a Winnebago hands down to a majority of other brands...
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Old 08-26-2005, 01:49 AM   #9
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Amen, Captain Bud. After seeing many other brands and hearing my friends complain about their non-Winnie units, I still feel Winnie gives you the 'best bang for the buck'. -Which is why we're in our third Winnie now.
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Old 08-26-2005, 02:52 AM   #10
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Great looking Moho Don, hope you are satisfied with the HR.

In the same price range definetly yes I would stay with Winnie.

If I hit the lottery would like to move up in the 500m to 750M price range.

Like my MOHO everything is working fine.
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Old 08-26-2005, 03:29 AM   #11
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As others have suggested,

And as painful as it is to admit (and it is painful)... If we were going to buy another unit in the same price range as our 2004 40AD WAS, we'd choose Winnie again, despite all of the problems (we are still working on issues 22 months later, BUT Winnie is still fixing them) we think that they offer the most VALUE for the dollar. Not the best floor plans, certainly not the best build quality, but best overall value for what you spend. I am driven by engineering and Winnie has, in my humble, well researched opinion, the best engineered box out there. They also have some of the best factory support in the industry.

Speaking of this industry...

The manufacturers have a LONG way to go in terms of quality and customer service. I believe the current oil and economic conditions are about to start sorting the good from the better, from the best. Those that learn that excellent customer service keeps customers coming back in hard times will survive, and, history tells us, the rest.... don't. I think this applies to manufacturers, as well as dealers.

Having just purchased a Toyota Prius, and averaging over 52 mpg in normal city driving, where is the research about improving motorhome mileage? Where are the hybrid diesel-pusher chassis?

Laugh now, but if fuel continues the trend it's following, we are all going to take another huge hit in terms of the street value of our rigs (we already have taken a hit in the past 2 months). I feel this industry is in for another wake up call, just as in the early 1970's and, to a lesser extent, the late 1980's.

In the long run, we all stand to benefit. Good manufacturers will still prosper. The better they get, the better the ubiquitous "overall industry quality standard" is.

It would also be interesting to see the effect of a few Japanease manufacturers noticing this opportunity, and really making a change in the industry. If Winnie, Fleetwood and Monaco don't want to end up like GM, Ford and Chrysler, they might begin to embrace the idea that value, quality (read: reliability), and excellent customer service are really best for the industry.

Good grief, what's in my morning coffee, anyway.
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Old 08-26-2005, 03:33 AM   #12
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NO NO NO, too many problems that never end, would look at Newmar or Tiffin product. Maybe they will be the same but may they will be better. Winnie has terrific floorplans and liveability but too many problems too soon
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Old 08-26-2005, 07:56 AM   #13
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We love our 2000 Chieftain D.P 36ft, but wife has to have the garden tube and Winnie does not have it as an option so it looks like we will be going to the Allegro Bus 40 DP.I had asked if they would change out the shower for garden tube and i would pay the extra dollars and the answer was no.So good by Winnie.
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Old 08-26-2005, 08:40 AM   #14
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Thanks ichn2go. It was certainly a tough decision and the week before "she" almost got me to go for a 36G until I pointed out just how crowded we'd be.

I will soon find out how quality compares. Frankly, what we found when looking this time was that you really have trouble determining other than surface problems or obvious glitches. We expect to have a few items that need attention - and hopefully it will only be a few. I'll make a point of letting you know how it goes.

The price was virtually identicaly to a 2006 Journey 39K the dealer just received. The Amb does have a number of features as I noted above that are not on the Journey - and the Amb doesn't have some things that the Journey has. One of the main features was the floorplan. I hope Winnie will add the external satellite dish connection (don't recall seeing it on the 06) that HR has - makes an external dish much easier to use. We had the Winegard auto dish and it sometimes got lost and of course when parked under trees were were just out of luck. We are going to try an external this time - at least to start with.

This length and great floorplan is possible in a lower level model because of the 33,000 GVWR vs the 29,410 in the Journey (boosted from 27,910 April 1 for the 39K). I think the Tour/Ellipse are an attempt to correct that problem but a 40AD Tour would have cost us another $22k and we could not see enough value (and as noted - it was garish looking - kind of what one thinks a French WH might look like. What disgusted my DW again was opening the battery compartment on the 36G (it had just arrived a week earlier) and seeing that all the batteries and the compartment were filthy. Winnie really should enclose it. Our new one has 4 x 6V coach batteries and the 2 auto batteries in a closed compartment, and needless to say the filth was not evident.

The ride seemed to be fine. I doubt that we will find it a whole lot different from the Freightliner since they are both pretty good. I also had to satisfy myself that the 3 point leveling system is OK - which I did. I think Winnie and all others should adopt the 3 camera system - what a difference. We really liked the BU camera on the Winnie as it let us see everything behind us when on the road. I found it was less useful when backing up because of the distortion. The Amb's camera at the back can be adjusted up and down from 2 buttons on the screen panel - a very nice feature as well. The side cameras can be operated manually (switch on the dash) or automatically - that is, from the turn signals.

Anyway, we have our fingers crossed that we haven't made a mistake. If it turns out to be a blunder, I'll be sure to let others know so they can learn from our mistakes.

Now, having said all this, what would I really have liked to purchase? A Wanderlodge or a Foretravel. Unfortunately, had I done that, she would have had me committed.


<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by ichn2go:
Great looking Moho Don, hope you are satisfied with the HR.

In the same price range definetly yes I would stay with Winnie.

If I hit the lottery would like to move up in the 500m to 750M price range.

Like my MOHO everything is working fine.
Good Miles </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 08-26-2005, 08:43 AM   #15
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by GG1:
NO NO NO, too many problems that never end, would look at Newmar or Tiffin product. Maybe they will be the same but may they will be better. Winnie has terrific floorplans and liveability but too many problems too soon </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

GG1 - when you look at the Tiffin products, check to see if they have added an Energy Management System. I seem to recall that an EMS is not available, even as an option, on either the Phaeton or the Bus. I found this strange - I think Cruzer would be a good source of info on this because (just as one would expect) he has added an EMS to his Bus. Not too many of us have the talent to do that. Well, I'll speak for myself only - I haven't got it.

We found that we would not want to be without an EMS. Sure makes using 30AMP service easier.
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Old 08-26-2005, 09:37 AM   #16
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by GG1:
NO NO NO, too many problems that never end, would look at Newmar or Tiffin product. Maybe they will be the same but may they will be better. Winnie has terrific floorplans and liveability but too many problems too soon </div></BLOCKQUOTE>When I bought my Winne, My brother was service manager at an RV dealer with competing brands.

He advised me not to accept their offer of dealer cost plust $500 to order one. Or below dealer cost for one off the lot.

You won't believe some of the things that happen with some brands. My Winne is a jewel.

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Old 08-26-2005, 09:39 AM   #17
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2006 Adventurers have the triple camera backup monitor system. I'd expect to be able to get them on the diesels very soon, if not already.
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Old 08-26-2005, 10:03 AM   #18
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Well, I did have a Winny, a 2003 Suncruiser 33V/W20, but now I have a Tiffin. I guess I'll have to clarify why, now.

We did not have any serious problems with our Suncruiser and found it to be better than most other gassers out there. Winnebago does well by packaging lots of features into their product to give it added perceived value. Stuff like bedroom alarm clock, hair dryer hanging on the wall, EMS system, basement air, etc. They build a decent quality rig for a large volume manufacturer. We did have issues with it, but I can't say they were worse than other brands overall.

When we began our search for a DP, we found that the Tiffin was a better value. While Winnebago's construction wasn't bad, the Tiffin's was better - particularly in the roof. The Allegro Bus worked better for us in the floor plan, decor, and features areas. We figured we could always buy a hair dryer and alarm clock and put that in ourselves. The heavily promoted basement air turned out to be OK but it also turned out to be just another way of doing things, not necessarily better. I'd rate it equal to a good ducted roof air system (and actually, my Bus is quieter). The biggest drawback was the lack of EMS, but rather than have a dealer do it for $1,000 I just put it in myself. Of course, now that I have it, I found that I only used it once because the rest of the time we were in 50 amp hookups. Go figure.

Now that we have it, we are super pleased with it and have had unreal success with it. After the Suncruiser's maiden voyages I was a bit hesitant to take a one week old allegro Bus on a 27 day 6,000+ mile trip for it's first test but it performed flawlessly. I never got a change to test the legendary Tiffin service support.

I guess, to answer the original question, no - I wouldn't (didn't actually) buy another Winnebago. But, I have to reiterate that it's not because of it being bad or anything. It's just that the Allegro Bus really hit high marks with us. Plus, in that market segment, it offered the most bang for the buck - which is pretty much the way we felt about our Suncruiser at the time. Although today's Allegro Bay and Suncruiser are very close.
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Old 08-26-2005, 10:45 AM   #19
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Tim, did some checking and side mounted cameras are available as options on the Journey now. For some reason our dealer didn't order them. I'm wondering if they are available yet as none of the Winnie photos show them on the models in the brochure. Pity, I think they are well worth it. Now, if they can add a generator tray and a closed battery compartment.... and a few more floorplans suitable to a family of 3.....

HR put the 3 cameras on the bottom end last year (I guess to test it) and this year they are available on all models - DPs anyway. The Tour and Vectra info is incomplete on the internet so it is not apparent that they will have this option.

Cruzer, I have to echo your views. We simply found the model we bought rang our bell much more than the Winnies this time around. If our HR experience turns out lousy, well, it will be back to looking again in the future. If it turns out to be less of a headache than we've had with the Winnie, then.....Winnie will have to entice us with something pretty good next time.

Interesting that you haven't had to use your EMS much. We've used ours much more than I would like as I do prefer 50 amp of course. The park in FLA is 50 AMP, and I have 50AMP now in my pool shed, but the Winnie power cord isn't long enough so I'm using two dogbones and a 30amp extn to connect and thus it is 30 amp. I'm going to get a 50 AMP extn cord soon.

One of the other things I've noticed is that Winnie (and the other MHs) really do put out glamerous top of the line gassers that appear to be a cut above the more bottom end DPs like the Journey and the Ambassador. That always surprises me given prices. The problem however is that we are seeing very low CCC values for these units because they are getting overloaded. Given what we carry, we can't even think about going gas (and really wouldn't until they start added a braking assist (something above the grade brake). We might, however, by a C Class for pure touring in a few years after putting in a park model on the lot in Florida. Mind you, having the MH up here in hurricane season means I'm only worrying about a concrete pad blowing away.
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Old 08-26-2005, 07:29 PM   #20
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Our 05 Itasca Meridian 34H was one of the prettiest coaches around - Malibu with the Beach Grass interior - but there ends the romance. Our coach was problem ridden from day one with a broken exhaust coupler that let the pipe drop down on the big wires to the inverter. Next were persistent rattles, staples coming up through the carpet, trip falling off, batteries boiling over, an electric sofa that didn't, broken cabinet latches, roof wrinkles and on and on. While on the cross country trip - 6 months duration, I called 4 different Winne dealerships to try and get some warranty work done and was told without fail - we are really backed up and we won't have anyone that can look at it for at least 3 weeks. To be honest, when we returned home, our dealer went to work on the 24 separate warranty items we had on our list - he had the coach for 5 weeks and wasn't finished when we spotted our DSDP on the lot. Sticker price difference between the Meridian 34H and the Dutch Star 3810 was 30K and change but worth every dime of it. To date there have been two warranty problems with the DS - a loose awning over the entry door and a slide out of adjustment. Both items were taken care of as soon as we could get it to the dealer. The Itasca was an expensive mistake but worth the money to get out of it.
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