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CostHelper > Cars  > Class A Motorhome

Class A Motorhome Cost


How Much Does a Class A Motorhome Cost?

 
low costEntry-Level: $50,000-$150,000average costUpscale: $200,000-$500,000high costCustom: $500,000-$800,000+
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Typically built on a specially designed chassis, Class A motorhomes resemble a bus or semi-truck and can sleep up to six people by using convertible furniture (dining table, benches, sofa, and chairs) as additional beds. Class As can be 21'-45' long but average 35'-40', and are common choices for long trips or full-time RV living.

Typical costs:

  • Retail prices start at $50,000-$150,000 for a new Class A with standard furnishings like laminate countertops and cabinetry. At roughly 30' long and 12' high, the Coachmen Mirada 29QB[1] starts at $80,500 and comes with reclining front seats that swivel to face the living area; queen-size bed; shower stall; bathroom with sink and toilet; kitchen area with sink, stove and refrigerator; dinette/sleeping booth; hot water heater; furnace; and "basement" storage underneath.
  • For $200,000-$500,000 expect more options, more room (including slide-outs to expand the living space) and higher-quality cabinetry, flooring, etc. Diesel engines are typically more expensive than gas models, and diesel-pushers -- with a rear-mounted diesel engine -- cost more than front-engine models. The diesel Winnegabo 2011 Tour series[2] at $274,000-$311,530; units are 12' high and 40'-43' long, and include hydraulic jacks that automatically level the vehicle when parked.
  • Customers can "design" a custom Class A motorhome by choosing specific features, layout and decor for $500,000-$800,000 or more. Luxury touches can include hardwood cabinetry and floors, or marble countertops. Other options include multiple slide-outs, leather furniture, a gas fireplace and more.
  • Motorhomes start depreciating[3] as soon as they leave the dealership. A well-maintained Class A that's a few years old can be 20% to 30% below its original purchase price. Used RV prices depend on age, mileage and condition.
Related articles: Class C Motorhome, Class B Motorhome Camper Van, RV Rental, Motorhome RV, RV

What should be included:
  • A towing hitch is standard on the rear of most Class A motorhomes.
  • Class As can be difficult to maneuver; many dealers include driving instruction. For example, Lazydays RV Center in Florida offers its customers a free RV drivers confidence course with 1.5 hours of lecture and two hours behind the wheel.
  • In some states drivers of motorhomes longer than 40' must pass the test for a commercial driver's license, but in other states no special license is required. Check with the department of motor vehicles[4] for each state visited.
Additional costs:
  • Specialized RV Insurance can cost $1,000-$3,000 or more annually, with up to a 5% discount for completing RV driver training. Classes cost $250-$600 or more depending on the total hours of instruction and the instructor's travel time, for one-on-one training in the customer's own motorhome.
  • Class As average about 8-10 miles per gallon, and a typical fuel tank holds 100-150 gallons. At $2.50-$4 a gallon, a fill-up could cost $250-$600 and last 800-1,500 miles.
  • Overnight campground or RV park fees cost $10-$40 a night, depending on the desirability of the location and the amenities offered, such as a swimming pool or coin laundry. Emptying the sewage system is typically included in overnight fees; dumping without spending the night costs $5-$25 or more.
  • Tires, brakes, filters and other mechanical parts wear out in direct proportion to the mileage covered. Some full-time RVers recommend a maintenance/repair fund of $3,000-$5,000 a year.
  • Renting an RV storage space can run $20-$100 a month outdoors and $45-$450 a month indoors. For a tryout before buying, renting a Class A motorhome costs $1,400-$3,500 for a 7-day, 700-mile trip.
Shopping for a class a motorhome:
  • RV shows[5] offer many makes and models; admission can be free or $5-$10.
  • Most dealer prices are negotiable. At message boards hosted by Woodall's[6] and MotorHome Magazine RV buyers and owners describe buying a new Class A for 25% or more below the manufacturer's suggested retail price.
  • MSRPs can be hard to determine. Unlike new car dealers, RV dealers are not required to post the MSRP on the vehicle's window. And the MSRP can vary significantly for identical make and model RVs depending on floor plan and choice of furnishings. Dealer markup can be 10%-70% over wholesale costs, according to video tips[7] from Charles Davis of RVFinancing.com. Digital Federal Credit Union offers tips for getting the best price [8] . RV Magazine explains how to negotiate and finance[9] an RV purchase.
  • For used motorhomes, NadaGuides.com provides a price-estimate tool[10] , and Changingears.com describes how to determine a fair market price[11] . Consignment seller PPL Motor Homes posts its actual selling prices[12] .
  • Changingears.com provides checklists for inspecting an RV[13] before buying it, and for road testing a motorhome[14] . Roaming Times posts reviews[15] .
  • Find local dealers through the National Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association[16] or GoRVing.com[17] .
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External Resources:
  1.  www.coachmenrv.com
  2.  www.gowinnebago.com/products/2011/
  3.  www.rversonline.org/ArtNewUsedRV.html
  4.  www.dmv-department-of-motor-vehicles.com/
  5.  www.gorving.com/where-to-find/rv-shows
  6.  forums.woodalls.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/23571442/srt/pa/pging/1/page/1.cfm
  7.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEFv71FzYIg
  8.  /www.dcu.org/streetwise/boat-rv/rv-price.html
  9.  www.rvmagonline.com/features/0808rv-rv-buying-tips/negotiating.html
  10.  www.nadaguides.com/RVs
  11.  changingears.com/rv-art-determining-rv-fmv.shtml
  12.  www.pplmotorhomes.com/sold/class-a-motor-homes.htm
  13.  changingears.com/rv-checklist-inspection.shtml
  14.  changingears.com/rv-checklist-road-test-motor-home.shtml?sec-checklist
  15.  www.roamingtimes.com/classamotorhomes/index.aspx
  16.  www.rvda.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Dealer_Info&template=/DealerSearch/Custom/dealer_s...
  17.  www.gorving.com/where-to-find/dealers
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