Motorhome Columns | Family Motor Coaching
Thor Unveils New Motorhome
The October 2016 California RV Show gave Thor Motor Coach the opportunity to showcase its 2017 motorhomes, including its new Type A model, Aria. The diesel-powered coach is equipped with a 360-horsepower Cummins engine.
The interior features Amish cabinetry; hand-laid porcelain tile; leatherette seating; an electric fireplace; solid-surface countertops; and residential appliances. The Aria also offers a first for Thor: a 100-watt solar charging system with a power controller.
The Aria’s slideouts and awnings can be operated with a multiplex wiring control system, which also shows information such as tank levels. Entertainment amenities include a 50-inch retractable TV, a Blu-ray player, a sound bar, and a 40-inch exterior TV.
All Aria floor plans include a king bed and a 32-inch bedroom TV. The 3901 floor plan offers the Tilt-A-View inclining bed mechanism, which adjusts the bed for watching TV. For more information, call (800) 860-5658 or visit www.thormotorcoach.com/aria.
RVillage Mobile App Is Released
RVillage has released a free mobile app for iPhones and Android smartphones. The app is available through the iTunes Store and the Google Play store. A version of the app for tablets also is being developed.
RVillage is an increasingly popular social media platform that helps RV owners connect with each other. The website RVillage.com was designed by FMCA member Curtis Coleman and has been embraced by FMCA. Users can share photos, write about their travels, update their location on an interactive map, join get-togethers, search for campgrounds, and more.
The app’s developers have noted that this app, like others, is a work in progress. Any bugs will be fixed, and new features will be added.
When installing the app, users should allow for “location services” when prompted. This will not reveal your location to anyone; rather, it assists with the app’s “change location” feature. Also, users should allow for “push notifications” when prompted during the installation. RVillage developers also ask that users review the app in the iTunes Store or Google Play.
REV Recreation Group Expansion
The latter part of 2016 saw a flurry of activity at REV Recreation Group, with the opening of a Quality Assurance Center, the ribbon-cutting for a new REV Visitor Center, the launch of four new websites, and the announcement that parent company REV Group Inc. plans an initial public offering. REV Recreation Group manufactures American Coach, Fleetwood, Holiday Rambler, and Monaco motorhomes.
In August, the Quality Assurance Center opened at 1010 W. Commerce Drive in Decatur, Indiana. The center will put each motorhome through a 193-point inspection, including a test drive; a rain bay test; an inspection of the interior and exterior fit and finish; and a function test of all electrical systems, plumbing systems, and audiovisual equipment. REV dealers and customers are welcome to visit the center. In addition, factory tours are offered on weekdays. For information about visiting the center or touring the factory, call (800) 854-1344.
In October, the ribbon was cut for the new REV Visitor Center at 1420 Patterson St. in Decatur. The center is the capstone of a $6 million expansion and renovation project. The visitor center features 49 paved campsites that are free to guests, as well as a laundry facility. It also houses a service center for REV Recreation Group brands, with 35 service bays and three paint booths.
Also in October, REV launched four newly redesigned websites for American Coach (www.americancoach.com), Monaco Coach (www.monacocoach.com), Holiday Rambler (www.holidayrambler.com), and Fleetwood RV (www.fleetwoodrv.com). The sites provide numerous shopping tools for consumers.
In addition, REV Group Inc. made plans to raise up to $100 million in its initial public offering, according to a prospectus filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The company had not priced the offering at press time.
For information about REV recreation vehicles, visit www.revrvgroup.com.
Fee-Free Days Set At National Parks
Entrance fees for all visitors will be waived at National Park Service sites during 10 fee-free days in 2017. The days are as follows: January 16 (Martin Luther King Jr. Day); February 20 (Presidents Day); April 15-16 and April 22-23 (National Park Week Weekends); August 25 (National Park Service birthday); September 30 (National Public Lands Day); and November 11-12 (Veterans Day weekend).
Usually, 124 of the 413 national parks sites charge entrance fees that range from $3 to $30; the other sites are always free. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/fee-free-parks.htm.
Campground Helps Grant Ill Boy’s Wish
An FMCA commercial-member campground in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, teamed up with Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic to grant an ill 14-year-old boy’s wish for an RV camping trip. In September 2016, Ocean Lakes Family Campground, C4970, hosted Daequan Smith, who lives in Annapolis, Maryland. Daequan undergoes an extensive medical regimen because of a gastrointestinal disorder.
While RV camping, Daequan and his family tried their hand at grilling, ate hot dogs and s’mores, enjoyed Gospel Weekend, visited local attractions, and spent lots of time in the water.
“It was an honor to be part of Daequan’s wish,” said Barb Krumm, the campground’s director of marketing and public relations. “Seeing the love that this family has for each other and how they work together around the clock for Daequan’s care is moving.”