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Old 08-22-2018, 08:54 AM   #1
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Hi all -

I have a family of 6, with a new child and this makes it very difficult to keep our 5th wheel bunk house (separate room in the back) which we love. Simple fact is, we do not fit in my 2500 Dodge, along with our 2 dogs. So I have now turned my eyes to a Class A as my kids really want a "driving RV."

I love the overhead bunk, and since I own and love my diesel truck, I was super surprised to check out the Legacy 38C at last years RV show. It has everything we want, bunk house, 2 bathrooms, and overhead bunk. I do wish it had a King bed option but it is not a deal breaker. The Rig also has decent kitchen space and is not too cramped with the slides pulled in.

However, after reading this forum and visiting a few dealers, I am a little confused. We can afford a Thor Aria 4000 which is about one or two levels above the Legacy and actually has an overhead bunk. The cost after negotiating is about $210,000 versus the Legacy which is anywhere from $155K-$171K. It also looks like the 2019 Berk Class A Diesel pushers with the front door entry are going to be offering the overhead bunk.

As the floor plan seems to be very important for us, I started thinking about getting a gasser. To that end, we have looked at the Tiffin Allegro UA and the Thor Miramar 37.1. The Miramar has basically the same floor plan as the Thor Aria 4000 and is about $136,516. The Tiffin is a fantastic coach as well, but the overhead bunk feels a little sketchy for little ones as it is completely manual, without any netting. I would have to add some safeguards but the overall quality of the Tiffin has me wondering.

So after comparing the Tiffin and the Thor which are about $130K versus the Thor Aria at $210K I really started thinking about how we camp. We live in CA and really do not do any mountain camping and we are not going to live in our RV. Nevertheless we want to keep this coach indefinitely and I do not want to be constrained by a gas motor, especially if we decide to haul.

So this brought me back to the Legacy. What made you folks go for the entry level diesel over the high end gasser? Is the Legacy worth the $40K or more over the Thor Miramar 37.1. Fleetwood Bounder 36F or the Tiffin Allegro UA? Moreover, if the overhead bunk is a very attractive feature would you recommend waiting for the Berk or sitting on the Aria 4000 at its price point of about $40K over the Legacy 38C?

Please help!! Thank you in advance
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Old 08-23-2018, 08:11 AM   #2
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Well, no help on your quest for answers. You are posting to the FR Georgetown site, perhaps you should redirect your question to the Berkshire forum on this site. As for the Tiffin versus Thor, I did look at those and went with what we have (Georgetown 378XL) which wouldn’t come close to the floor plan your looking for. Good luck in your quest.
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Old 08-23-2018, 08:41 AM   #3
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the question of Legacy vs Georgetown, or similar Palazzo vs Challenger is one of whether you want gas or diesel, there can be pros and cons to both.

I would suggest that if you are simply taking vacations and camping infrequently, the money for the diesel versions are probably overkill, since the base layouts can be very similar, no matter the engine type.
If you really want to spend the extra money and have a quieter ride, smoother ride, air bags to deflate when you park, and generally a more robust and 'whole house' Inverter for all the outlets when 'off-grid', then go diesel.
Both the Legacy and Palazzo are 'twins' for the most part. The front overhead electric queen bunk is a great addition to the 'normal' hall bunks, and normal let-out or jack-knife sofa sleeping options(sounds like you'll need them all!), and the single exterior step because of the low-sitting XCS chassis is so nice compared to most coaches with two or three just to get to the door...much better with all those 'chillins!
We find that the diesel platform is best for long journeys and lots of travel - it is very well designed for great fuel economy, with close to 12 versus most gas units at 6 to 8 or so. Just the fuel savings alone can make a huge difference in the overall cost if you travel a lot. If you don't really, then stay with a gas coach.
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:33 AM   #4
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Thank you guys for the replies. Yeah I love the single step entry and low ride feel and with the young kids this seems to be very practical . Didn’t think about that. In regards to the sleeping conditions you are right I will need all of those !
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:46 AM   #5
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Have you considered doing a search for a quality used coach a few years old?

Most MH do not get driven much but the price point may be in the range you are looking for in the floorplan/diesel you like.

If it were me Id look for units within even as far as 1000 miles away in order to get what I really wanted at a price I was willing to afford.

Even the trip to go look at and pick it up could be an adventure for the family.

PS, after towing a 5er with a Ford F250 gasser and a Chevy 2500 Duramax/Allison Id be interested in the Diesel pusher as well if I were in your shoes. We find it simply makes for a much more relaxed experience if you ever get into any hilly country.
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Old 08-23-2018, 11:08 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by DouglasReid View Post
Have you considered doing a search for a quality used coach a few years old?

Most MH do not get driven much but the price point may be in the range you are looking for in the floorplan/diesel you like.

If it were me Id look for units within even as far as 1000 miles away in order to get what I really wanted at a price I was willing to afford.

Even the trip to go look at and pick it up could be an adventure for the family.

PS, after towing a 5er with a Ford F250 gasser and a Chevy 2500 Duramax/Allison Id be interested in the Diesel pusher as well if I were in your shoes. We find it simply makes for a much more relaxed experience if you ever get into any hilly country.


Yeah great points. I am now leaning towards a used second tier Class A diesel but the interesting thing is it seems like manufacturers like Thor Aria 4000 and the new Berkshire’s are moving toward an overhead bunk even with a front door entry. I have not seen any front door entry class A diesels older than 2018 that have an overhead bunk.

Thus, I am trying to find a used palazzo or if that doesn’t work out, a used high end gasser.
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Old 08-23-2018, 11:31 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by JJJLaramie View Post
Yeah great points. I am now leaning towards a used second tier Class A diesel but the interesting thing is it seems like manufacturers like Thor Aria 4000 and the new Berkshire’s are moving toward an overhead bunk even with a front door entry. I have not seen any front door entry class A diesels older than 2018 that have an overhead bunk.

Thus, I am trying to find a used palazzo or if that doesn’t work out, a used high end gasser.
I can't help you at all with anything other than my earlier suggestion. We have a 5er and LOVE that but it is just DW and I so we don't need a BH.

We also sometimes tow a 14' flat boat behind the 5er to fish where we camp. I could tow it with a MH but could not launch or recover it without my truck.
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Old 08-23-2018, 07:36 PM   #8
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FWIW...Sounds to me like a gasser will do the job for you and save you a lot of up front costs...AND should be good for a long time on the well proven F53 chassis. I would suggest that if Tiffin makes a floor plan you like...that is the top of the line for a gasser and they provide superb after sale service and support based on how they've treated my good friend who is a 2nd owner. The problem is...you have to go to RedBay AL to get that service for major issues. Dealers are dealers but if you can get there,,,Red Bay will take care of you.
On the Forest River side...seems like the G'Town GT5 36B5 might meet your needs. https://www.mhsrv.com/2019-forest-ri...-a-tx-i2268608
I'm really happy with our Georgetown Gasser decision...but we each have our own needs. Good luck finding your own solution!
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Old 08-23-2018, 10:42 PM   #9
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I'm jealous. I wish I had your dilemma.
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Old 08-24-2018, 08:13 AM   #10
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THOR motor coach asked me to stop by and give them my opinion of a new 'design' they were implementing back in 2016...in Wakarusa... it was the new Venetian with a front let-down queen bunk, with a new seat-belt elevation system. They were also in the midst of considering designing a Venetian bunkhouse, but it seems they've not followed thru on that one yet.

Personally, I always like the idea of having an extra sleeping or storage area above the driver/passenger area - it works great in mid-door coaches, like our Palazzo... but I would hesitate to consider one in a traditional bus-style front door coach.
If the front bed is in the down position, it really makes it difficult and uncomfortable to access the front door. You need to almost get down on your knees, or be a VERY short person, still having to bend over greatly - it would make for some interesting entrances and exits while someone is in the 'bunk'.
Now, maybe the thought is that the front bunk won't be deployed until the coach is locked up for the night and everyone is ready for bed. Great. And, if the new 'seat belt' style elevation system operates easily and quickly, then maybe you can move it out of the way when needed, at least as long as nothing in the bunk would cause any crush issue.

As for using it for storage, it's doubtful since it's not sure if you can travel while it is not in it's highest 'closed' position. Our Palazzo's electric system with 'pin locks' allows us the option of using the closed position, or as we did ourselves, adding some pin holes 10 to 12" lower, so that even when traveling the bunk can serve as either storage if no one using it for sleeping, or someone who uses it nightly can keep their 'stuff' and personal items there without having to move them daily. Our son did this and loved it over the traditional hall bunks, though it has a little 'less' privacy, if that is any concern.

Coachmen Mirada LS models(by Forest River) now have had for several years a 'new' Salon Bunk option, which is a set of bunks, end-to-end, as one long run, which is a similar let-down sleeping area right above the living area table and couch. At night, I suppose you can then let down the Salon Bunks for sleeping, rather than the traditional hall bunks, front bunk, or letting out a couch. The nice thing is that it takes up no additional room for this let down bunk system, totally disappears when retracted, and you could certainly use the option of having it down even WHILE traveling. They, like the front let-down bunks, have the 'safety' webbing for the edges.

just some thoughts and ideas

I believe that now THOR is using this new seat-belt deployment system for front bunks in many of their coaches.
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Old 08-24-2018, 12:27 PM   #11
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THOR motor coach asked me to stop by and give them my opinion of a new 'design' they were implementing back in 2016...in Wakarusa... it was the new Venetian with a front let-down queen bunk, with a new seat-belt elevation system. They were also in the midst of considering designing a Venetian bunkhouse, but it seems they've not followed thru on that one yet.

Personally, I always like the idea of having an extra sleeping or storage area above the driver/passenger area - it works great in mid-door coaches, like our Palazzo... but I would hesitate to consider one in a traditional bus-style front door coach.
If the front bed is in the down position, it really makes it difficult and uncomfortable to access the front door. You need to almost get down on your knees, or be a VERY short person, still having to bend over greatly - it would make for some interesting entrances and exits while someone is in the 'bunk'.
Now, maybe the thought is that the front bunk won't be deployed until the coach is locked up for the night and everyone is ready for bed. Great. And, if the new 'seat belt' style elevation system operates easily and quickly, then maybe you can move it out of the way when needed, at least as long as nothing in the bunk would cause any crush issue.

As for using it for storage, it's doubtful since it's not sure if you can travel while it is not in it's highest 'closed' position. Our Palazzo's electric system with 'pin locks' allows us the option of using the closed position, or as we did ourselves, adding some pin holes 10 to 12" lower, so that even when traveling the bunk can serve as either storage if no one using it for sleeping, or someone who uses it nightly can keep their 'stuff' and personal items there without having to move them daily. Our son did this and loved it over the traditional hall bunks, though it has a little 'less' privacy, if that is any concern.

Coachmen Mirada LS models(by Forest River) now have had for several years a 'new' Salon Bunk option, which is a set of bunks, end-to-end, as one long run, which is a similar let-down sleeping area right above the living area table and couch. At night, I suppose you can then let down the Salon Bunks for sleeping, rather than the traditional hall bunks, front bunk, or letting out a couch. The nice thing is that it takes up no additional room for this let down bunk system, totally disappears when retracted, and you could certainly use the option of having it down even WHILE traveling. They, like the front let-down bunks, have the 'safety' webbing for the edges.

just some thoughts and ideas

I believe that now THOR is using this new seat-belt deployment system for front bunks in many of their coaches.
Thank you for your comments. I agree with everything here. Looks like the new 2nd/3rd tier diesel models with the front door are now going with a Overhead Bunk. We have not seen the Berkshire or the new Navigator/Endeavor but we saw the Thor Aria 4000. We loved it at first but after considerable thought, you are 100% correct. It really does not make sense to have an Overhead Bunk in a front door model DP. In my family, the kids often go to bed earlier than the adults and the kids are the ones most excited by any bunks. So assuming the kids go to bed earlier and sleep on the overhead bunk, going in and out of the coach would be an adventure of crawling and squeezing under.

So we have crossed those off our list!

The Holiday Rambler makes a great diesel coach, at good value for a 2017 (less than the Legacy) and the 36 XE 36U has a door that is just behind the passenger which makes their overhead bunk super convenient. We love the price point and coach so much we are considering waving the traditional "bunk house" as our kids are simply really excited about the overhead bunk and these days kids do not seem to really need to be stationary in their space at night as they have all kinds of portable fun. The Navigator has a bath and half, and a king size "sleep number" bed with amazing storage and a great power train (as compared to the Legacy 38 C).

I just cannot find more 2nd/3rd tier DP with the middle door set up due to losing space etc and other concerns these manufacturers have with aesthetics.


At the upcoming RV show I will likely see a lot of the overhead bunks with the front door set up but I think this will not be a long lasting phase.
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Old 08-24-2018, 12:33 PM   #12
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FWIW...Sounds to me like a gasser will do the job for you and save you a lot of up front costs...AND should be good for a long time on the well proven F53 chassis. I would suggest that if Tiffin makes a floor plan you like...that is the top of the line for a gasser and they provide superb after sale service and support based on how they've treated my good friend who is a 2nd owner. The problem is...you have to go to RedBay AL to get that service for major issues. Dealers are dealers but if you can get there,,,Red Bay will take care of you.
On the Forest River side...seems like the G'Town GT5 36B5 might meet your needs. https://www.mhsrv.com/2019-forest-ri...-a-tx-i2268608
I'm really happy with our Georgetown Gasser decision...but we each have our own needs. Good luck finding your own solution!
Yeah Cam, this is definitely on the table. I saw a 36F Fleetwood storm, 2017, for a decent value. This has basically the same floorplan as that Georgetown or the Legacy. We saw the Tiffin bunk house set up and love it, but for some reason, the Tiffin overhead bunk seems to be very inefficient for us. I would not feel save with little ones on it and it is only a twin, with open spaces on all sides.


Thor's Challenger 37TB looks like the Aria 4000 (diesel) and the new 2019 Miramar 37.1 and if I can find one used the price point should be about $30-$40K lower than the Legacy and will likely fill our needs.


I am just so used to driving diesel and the ride options, open basement, torque, low sitting frame and easy drive make me hesitant to fully commit to a gasser. But I love your points perhaps I am overthinking too much. Just want to make a good decision without remorse.
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Old 08-24-2018, 12:34 PM   #13
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I'm jealous. I wish I had your dilemma.
Thanks man. Although frustrating and really busy looking around, I am very thankful to have the time and ability to choose one of these beautiful coaches.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:41 AM   #14
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We went from a Tiffin Allegro 35QBA open road (Gas powered Bunkhouse) to a Legacy and could not be happier. The Tiffin did have some pluses. Tiffin has a very well thought out design. You can tell the people designing the coach actually use the coach. I cant say the same for the designers of the Legacy. But the floor plan of the Legacy is just what we needed, what really sold me was the ride. In our gas coach you never really felt in control and after about 4-5 hours I would really want out of the drivers seat. With the freightliner chassis I can drive 8-9 hours with no complaints. It is way more stable. It gets 4MPG better than our v10. Another huge advantage is the brakes. I think that if you truly are going to just camp local 2 hour radius and not planning on towing all the time a gas rig will suffice but where is the fun in that? Drive them both and see which one you feel more comfortable navigating down the highway for hours. It should be an easy decision after that.
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:40 PM   #15
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Please tell more about the brakes. I have been thinking the diesels have substantially more stopping power. Ie: shorter braking distance such as from 60 to 0.
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Old 08-31-2018, 12:48 AM   #16
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The air brakes on the freightliner are night and day better than the ford chassis. Towing our Jeep with our Allegro emergency stops were sketchy at best. Also the freightliner comes with a true exhaust brake.
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Old 08-31-2018, 08:24 AM   #17
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The air brakes on the freightliner are night and day better than the ford chassis. Towing our Jeep with our Allegro emergency stops were sketchy at best. Also the freightliner comes with a true exhaust brake.
That is what I needed to know.

Thanks.
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:34 AM   #18
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We went from a Tiffin Allegro 35QBA open road (Gas powered Bunkhouse) to a Legacy and could not be happier. The Tiffin did have some pluses. Tiffin has a very well thought out design. You can tell the people designing the coach actually use the coach. I cant say the same for the designers of the Legacy. But the floor plan of the Legacy is just what we needed, what really sold me was the ride. In our gas coach you never really felt in control and after about 4-5 hours I would really want out of the drivers seat. With the freightliner chassis I can drive 8-9 hours with no complaints. It is way more stable. It gets 4MPG better than our v10. Another huge advantage is the brakes. I think that if you truly are going to just camp local 2 hour radius and not planning on towing all the time a gas rig will suffice but where is the fun in that? Drive them both and see which one you feel more comfortable navigating down the highway for hours. It should be an easy decision after that.
Great points. I am in exactly the same situation and what you pointed out regarding the driving of the Legacy versus the V10 really spells it out for me. We only camp local due to hauling a 5th wheel and safety reasons. I want to take the rig further and further and based on this point, it makes a lot more sense to roll with the DP.
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Old 09-03-2018, 11:29 PM   #19
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Glad to help.
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