September '20

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68 • RV PRO • September 2020 RV PRO ➤ NEW MODEL YEAR PREVIEW "There are modifications and safety features Ford has added to the new chassis, including much safer driving on wet pavement and in different climates," he says. "The all-wheel-drive chassis will be constantly on, instead of four-wheel drive, which is either on or off." Across the product lines, Recchio says Coachmen's Class B group is upping its TV sizes to 24-inch smart TVs with a sound bar. Meanwhile, water consumption is being addressed with a switch to the Oxygenics shower head, which provides better water pres- sure and allows the head to be switched on and off. The Shower Miser is another solution for water conservation that will be added to the Beyond and Nova product lines. "We're two-and-a-half years into the LI3 system, which is a 600AMP/hour Xantrex lithium battery system. It's just been amazing," says Recchio. "It's still tried and true and we've had no failures. It's the most reliable, simple and safe lithium system in the business today," The system uses an iron-phosphate-based battery, as opposed to a nickel-based battery, which has been proven to be safer for lithium batteries, according to Recchio. He notes that even Tesla is seeing the advantage of iron phosphate over nickel with the recent announcement the carmaker made regarding the switch to iron-phosphate batteries. Meanwhile, the Nova 20RB on the Dodge ProMaster chassis debuted at last year's Open House event and started shipping earlier this year. Recchio says it's retailing very strong thanks to some important features, such as dual-pane acrylic windows imported from Europe. Attention to insulation and sound deadening is of the upmost importance, according to Recchio. "Quality is important. For example, the cabinetry in the Nova, I would put up against any other product in the industry as far as quality," he says. "As customers go down, the road they don't want to hear rattles and squeaks. We use R14 insulation and hush mats over the wheel wells to prevent sound entering the van from the road. It's taken off tremendously." The newest floorplan for this year is the Nova 20C, which features a couch and rear-powered sofa with jump seats that power down into a fixed bed. "What makes our products so great are three things: No. 1, we have the most unique group of people in our plant; they're craftsman and focused on quality. No. 2 is quality. Quality is a couple of different things. When it comes to Class B's, the quality level of components you put in matter. No. 3 goes back to quality, especially when it comes to some of the sound-deadening com- ponents," says Recchio. "You spend a lot of time behind the wheel in a Class B. We pay a lot of attention to making sure our vans are very quiet on the inside." COACHMEN CLASS C'S In the Freelander and Leprechaun lines, there is a straighter, sportier look, abandoning the Elkhart swirl that's been a long- time staple on many RVs. "We've redesigned exteriors to give a modern look and re-bun- dled some option packaging to make it easier for dealers and customers to order product," says Luke Handyside, Freelander and Leprechaun sales manager. "Freelander will highlight blues and Leprechaun will have burgundy highlights. We're also intro- ducing a partial paint for Freelander premier units." Other changes include a move to a 10-cubic-foot refrigerator, other than units that already have residential fridges. That's an increase from 6 cubic feet. "From a Class C, we can't really change the physical definition of what it is. We have a new front wrap, new graphics, we're giving it a fresh new look all the way around the coach," says Mike Bear, general manager for Coachmen Class C's. Leprechaun received an overhaul with new cabinets, flooring, countertops and fabrics. One of the most notable changes is a new ride system with an air bag suspension in the rear and the chassis equipped with stability control. CRV comfort ride eliminates and reduces a lot of vibration to make for a plush ride, and the ability to adjust for preferences. "We're excited about Bilstein shocks. The Bilstein mono-shock design improves handling considerably," says Handyside. Another major move is the rollout of the new Concord product featuring full rear air suspension, full compressor air tank, LED lighting and plenty of upgrades to provide the closest thing to PREVIEW For 2021, Coachmen updated its Beyond (pictured) and Nova Class B motorhomes. The Beyond features a L13 Xantrex lithium battery system.

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