Gas RV vs. Diesel RV

2012 Winnebago View

Gas and diesel motorhomes come in a variety of styles and sizes.  What to choose depends on how much you plan to travel, your budget, how many people you need to sleep, what you plan to tow and personal preference.  Class A, class B and class C motorhomes are available in both diesel and gas models.

The Winnebago View pictured above is a diesel class C motorhome.  Diesel class C motorhomes like this are generally on a Sprinter chassis with a Mercedes Benz 6 cylinder turbo diesel engine.  They are 24 to 25 feet long, feature European inspired styling and can tow a small car.  They are more fuel efficient than gasoline class C motorhomes and their engines last longer, but they require a larger initial investment.  Gas class C motorhomes come in a greater variety of sizes, usually 22 to 31 feet and offer more choices in floorplans.  They are on a Chevrolet or Ford van chassis with a cabover bed and most have a V8 or V10 engine.  They have more torque and pulling power than the diesel models.  All class C motorhomes have automotive like driving features making them easy to drive and maneuver.  Maintenance is less expensive on gas models than on diesel models.

Class B motorhomes (or class B+ like the Thor Siesta Sprinter) are similar to class C motorhomes, but instead of the cabover bed, they have a TV or storage compartment above the cab.  Diesel models (like the Era by Winnebago) often get 17 miles per gallon, which is better than any other motorhome.

2012 Tiffin Allegro

The 2012 Tiffin Allegro pictured above is an example of a gasoline Class A motorhome.  All class A motorhomes are on a truck, bus or custom chassis.  Gasoline class A motorhomes are less expensive than diesel models and they’re less expensive to maintain.  In fact, some owners may be able to perform routine maintenance themselves.  Diesel models must be maintained by a service facility with experienced diesel mechanics.  To choose between buying a gas class A or a diesel class A, consider your budget, how long you plan to keep the motorhome, how much you plan to travel, how much storage space you’ll need and what (if anything) you plan to tow.

If you want a very large (38 to 43 foot) motorhome, you will need a diesel class A.  It provides more carrying capacity, more storage, greater weight stabilization, a smoother ride (air ride suspension) better steering, better brakes (air brakes) and more towing capacity.  For example, if you need to tow a race car in a trailer, you’ll need a diesel class A.  The diesel engine, while being more expensive to maintain, will last longer than a gas engine. Most people travel less than 5,000 miles a year in their motorhomes, however,  and they trade them in without having accumulated a lot of mileage. If you plan to spend a lot of time traveling, diesel is a good choice.

It isn’t necessary to spend the extra money on a diesel model if you don’t want to.  You can get a beautiful class A motorhome with slide-outs and whatever floorplan and features suit you in a gasoline model.  Besides costing less than diesel, the cost of maintenance and repairs is lower.  Some people believe that diesel class A models are more fuel efficient than gas class A models, but there is hardly any difference.

We hope this answers your questions about the differences in diesel and gas motorhomes.  If you need more information, please click below and let us know.

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Holiday Season RV Camping In Colonial Williamsburg


Williamsburg holiday scene

One of America’s top destinations, Colonial Williamsburg is spectacular during the winter holiday season. The town is RV friendly with plenty of RV parking and shuttle service to places of interest.  Several nearby campgrounds provide winter accommodations to RV families, including Anvil Campground, which has its own shuttle service to Colonial Williamsburg.

Colonial Williamsburg’s Christmas decorations are known worldwide for their use of natural materials available during the 18th century.  These include:  more than 3 miles of white pine roping, 2,550 white pine and Frasier fir wreaths, 15 truckloads of pine, holly, boxwood, magnolia and berries and 79 cases of fruit!  Throughout December, the Christmas Decorations Walking Tour is a treat for visitors.  Historic area residences and hotels are also beautifully decorated.

Grand Illumination kicks off the holiday season on December 4, 2011. At 5PM, candles are lit in public buildings, shops and homes. Musical and other live performances from 3 stages begin at 5:15PM.  At 6:35PM, visitors will be able to activate glow sticks simultaneously to illuminate the town.  At 7PM, fireworks displays from 4 locations within the Historic Area begin.  After the fireworks, the Fifes and Drums march down the Duke of Gloucester St. with visitors following along.

“Lady Dunmore’s Ball” takes place at Colonial Williamsburg’s Governor’s Palace on Saturday evening, December 10.  Black tie or 18th century dress is suggested.  Visitors will be treated to many forms of entertainment, dancing, touring the Palace by candlelight, strolling through the fire-lit gardens and refreshments.  At the end of the evening, Lord and Lady Dunmore will address the gathering outdoors followed by a musket salute by the military guard.

On December 24th, visitors can experience the Firing of the Christmas Guns, an 18th century tradition.  The Fifes and Drums march down the Duke of Gloucester Street as the militia fire muskets in celebration of the holidays.

There is a complete Holiday Family Fun Itinerary with many activities for children and families with children.  They explore how 18th century families celebrated special occasions during the holiday season.  Programming is available 7 days a week.

Art exhibits, plays, musical performances, craft displays and historical demonstrations are conducted for visitors every day.  Special programs, dining, entertainment, events for children and more make Colonial Williamsburg a perfect getaway for the winter holiday season.  And, your family will create lasting memories by traveling there in your RV!

The following campgrounds are open during the winter to welcome RV campers:

American Heritage RV Park

Anvil Campground (with shuttle to town)

Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp Resort, Gloucester Point, VA

Williamsburg KOA (closed December 9 – March 1)

Keep in mind that reservations are a must at campgrounds!  Happy Holidays!

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Phaeton Motorhomes by Tiffin: What’s New For 2012


2012 Phaeton LivingRoom LoRes resized 600


Phaeton motorhomes by Tiffin have been the #1 selling class A motorhomes in America for the past 5 years.  Phaetons are so popular for many reasons, including how the Tiffin family stands behind their products.  Tiffin offers one of the RV industry’s best manufacturer’s warranties with a 5 year delamination warranty and a 10 year construction warranty.

Phaeton owners rave about their motorhomes!  They love the fact that they hear no rattles as they drive down the road!  They love the interior design, such as the bath and a half, which makes using the bathroom more convenient for guests.  The Phaeton’s whole electronics system is state of the art, including surround sound.  Having a large TV in the middle of the coach, with the front driver’s and passenger’s seats that swivel to form a seating area, creates a great entertaining space.  Phaetons offer top of the line luxury, ease of use and quality construction that you wouldn’t expect to find at their price point.

For 2012, Phaetons are featuring a number of changes, many of which are due to customer input.

  • A stainless steel residential refrigerator with six batteries, which used to be an option is now standard.  It’s 22 cubic feet with double doors and a pullout freezer.
  • High gloss cabinets, which are more residential and give a more upscale appearance, are now standard.
  • There’s now a wood drawer in the step well for convenient storage.  It’s useful for small tools or an atlas, for example.
  • The driver’s side console has been moved forward to make it easier to use the switches and to rest an elbow.
  • The bedroom’s new headboard is sturdier and more residential looking.
  • Cameras are now integrated with the side view mirrors, and give a more realistic view when backing up the Phaeton.
  • An expanded computer drawer in the front dash includes a compartment and lid.  It provides space for cables, a mouse, paper and pens, etc.
  • A gravity potable water fill in the passenger side sewer compartment door enables you to add fresh water without having to hook up to city water.
  • The recessed ceiling lights have been changed from Halogen to LED bulbs.  These use 90% less energy, last longer, provide more light and are cooler to the touch.
  • There are two new interior color options, Capri and Palmetto.
  • A new exterior color, Rustic Canyon, is one of 6 offered on the Phaeton.
  • There are currently 5 floorplans, and Tiffin will be adding more throughout the year.

The 2012 Phaeton motorhomes feature several other changes making them even more beautiful and user-friendly.  The Tiffin family listens to their customers and have upgraded the 2012 Phaeton motorhomes to be their best ever!

Ask Us Your Questions About Phaeton Motorhomes!

Koala Super Lite Travel Trailers: Towable With A Minivan


Koala travel trailer

Many of us would love to go camping in a travel trailer but don’t want to buy a truck just for towing.  If you have a minivan or crossover, you are in luck! Skyline’s Koala travel trailers are 1/2 ton towable and many, under 3500 pounds, are minivan and crossover towable!  Their unique construction materials mean many of their components are half of the weight of those in other campers.

Koala’s walls, beds and dinettes are framed with welded aluminum tubing.  They are lightweight but strong…. in fact, Koala’s bunk beds have a 250 pound weight capacity!  Cabinets and counter tops are made of poplar plywood, not particle board.  Lightweight and durable, the plywood won’t absorb water and swell up.

There were 6 floorplans available when Skyline RV first introduced Koalas.  As a result of input from RV dealers and customers, Koalas are now available with 20 floorplans in lengths from 20’9″ to 34’9“!  There are 6 floorplans available in Koalas under 3500 pounds and 8 floorplans available in Koalas under 4000 pounds!

Skyline RV thinks of their customers when designing trailers, so floorplans are logically laid out for ease of use.  For example, families can stop for lunch and have the use of the kitchen and bathroom without having to extend a slide-out.

Whether your vehicle can tow a heavy trailer or not, Skyline’s Koalas offer many choices within each weight category.  With these lighter weights, you’ll see savings at the gas pump.  And, with Koala’s unique construction materials, you’ll have a travel trailer that will give you many years of enjoyment!

See Skyline’s Koala Trailers Today at Reines RV Center!