2015 Solera 24R New Owner Observations
We purchased a new Solera 24R about 6 weeks ago and finally took her out for a weekend trip to a local campground. Here are our observations on the Solera as first time RV owners.
1) The Solera is pretty small if traveling with more than 2 people. Our family consists of my wife and I, a 3 year old and an infant. While we like the Solera, we think that if you have kids and are doing any extended traveling or camping a larger motorhome would be much more comfortable.
2) The propane tank is too small. I realize this small tank is based on saving weight for passengers and gear. If you have a propane generator and plan on using it while driving to run the house A/C, plan on stopping for propane a lot. Of course diesel generators are now an option again so if you plan on using the house A/C you might want to give the diesel generator some consideration.
3) The MB Sprinter driving experience is awesome! We drove just about everything before choosing Solera. The Ford F350 & F450 Class C gas models seemed too bloated although offered more room on a larger chassis affording more weight but sacrificing mpg. We also drove some gas and diesel Class A's. We really liked a few of the diesel pushers but their larger size kept us coming back to the Class C. We like to drive our Solera on the weekends for family outings in place of our car because with the Solera you get your own bathroom, refrigerator, etc. and more space than even the largest of SUVs. If we were just buying a motorhome for traveling long distances or weekend camping we probably would have gone with a larger RV.
4) The quality of the Solera seems pretty solid. Our friends have a expensive diesel pusher and it seems thar FR has done an excellent job incorporating finishes that you see on much more expensive units such as full body paint, ducted A/C vents, Black water tank flush and many more.
5) Sleeping with a family. I think the Solera 24R does a good job giving everyone a place to sleep for a mini motorhome. I really love the queen size mattress in the rear although my wife and our infant took it over this past weekend! I slept in the over cab bed with our 3 year old and was fairly comfortable even being 6'1". The length and width of the bed was acceptable however the foam cushions weren't that comfortable. Maybe getting a 3" memory foam topper would help. I think as our kids get older we will be able to put them in the over cab bed or the dinette and I'll get to sleep on the queen sized bed with my wife. We also considered setting up a pack and play for our infant on the floor but that would have made getting to the bathroom a little difficult at night.
6) MPG has consistently been in the 13-14 mpg range. I heard as a diesel engine breaks in MPG improves but I'm not counting on it. I'm satisfied with this MPG and am aware that keeping highway speeds around 60-65 mpg keeps you going longer between fuel stops.
I look forward to any comments or suggestions from other owners.
The Peterson Family
2015 Solera 24R
Living our dreams one day at a time!