Whether you are trying to determine which kind of RV you should buy, or you’re curious to how many RV types exist, this article will answer all your questions. An RV is a huge investment, but a very practical and rewarding one. The popularity of RVs is on the rise, and younger generations, like millennials, are surging sales as they are discovering the comfort and versatility of RV living.
Pros & Cons by RV Type
All RVs can be classified as either motorized (you drive it) or towable (you pull it). Deciding which RV type is best for you depends on your budget, driving preference, and what features matter most to you. Both types of RV yield the basic offerings like kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms in various shapes and sizes. However, here are some key differences between them:
– Can pull a boat or automobile behind.
– Drives more like an automobile, making it easier to maneuver on the road and in parking lots.
– You can switch between cabin and coach without getting out of the vehicle.
– Don’t need to use a tow vehicle.
– Usually more expensive to purchase and maintain than towable RVs.
– Not fuel efficient compared to regular road vehicles.
– Larger motorhomes can be difficult to drive in small parking lots or on narrow roads.
– Are more affordable and less maintenance than motorhomes.
– Are detachable once parked, making daily travel easier on tow vehicle.
– Can handle off-road driving better than motorhomes.
– More living space for size because there are no driving components.
– Puts extra strain on your tow vehicle.
– Cannot tow a car or boat behind.
– Harder to maneuver when in reverse.
Motorhomes: Motorized RV Classes
Class A RV/Diesel Pusher
Length: 21 to 45 ft.
MPG: 8-14 (Diesel) / 6-10 (Gas)
Average Cost: $50,000 to $250,000 and up!
Comfortably sleeping two to six people, Class A RVs are the most spacious and provide a comfortable ride on the road. With the luxury of space comes cost, making these RV types the most expensive to own. Diesel engines are preferred in Class A RVs for more power and better fuel efficiency. They go by the name “diesel pushers” because the engines are located towards the rear of the coach, thus “pushing” the RV down the road. This gives them a quieter ride compared to gas engines located in the front. Class A gas RVs are shorter, have less power, and must have the engines replaced more often than their diesel counterparts. Class A motorhomes with diesel or gas engines have comparable amenities, so it comes down to personal preference when deciding which is best.
Class B RV (Camper Van)
Length: 17 to 19 ft.
MPG: 18-25 (Diesel) / 10 -25 (Gas)
Average Cost: $40,000 to $80,000
These RV types get the nickname “camper van” because they look more like a van more than a motorhome. They come in both diesel and gas engines and are the smallest motorhome class. They can sleep one to four people and are perfect for weekend getaways due to their small size and maneuverability. Be aware that some Class B motorhomes don’t have self-contained toilets or fresh water tanks.
Class C RV
Length: 20 to 31 ft.
MPG: 14-18 (Diesel) / 8-15 (Gas)
Average Cost: $50,000 to $100,000
Being easily recognized by the “cab-over” or overhang that houses a bed or extra storage above the driving cab, class C RVs provide the same features as a Class As, but are smaller and thus more affordable and easier to maneuver. You can expect some pop-outs to expand floor space and amenities like a toilet, kitchen, living area and space enough to sleep up to eight people.
Towable RVs: Trailer RV Types
Length: 4 to 36 ft.
Average Cost: $10,000 to $45,000
These kinds of RVs are all pulled by a towing vehicle connected with a bumper hitch or hitch frame that extends from the front of the trailer. The greatest advantage travel trailer RVs have is versatility. They can be as small or as large as you want, fitting any buyers’ budget and preferences. Most standard travel trailers feature sleeping quarters, kitchens, bathrooms, living and entertainment areas. Some may increase their space through slide-out compartments, making it easier to walk or stand depending on the RV type. Common travel trailer types include: classic, teardrop, A-frame, expandable and pop-up.
Length: 22 – 40 ft.
Average Cost: $75,000 to $100,000
With a dual wheel axle trailer, an over-cab, and a gooseneck hitch fifth-wheel RVs are usually pulled by a powerful truck. Fifth-wheels offer some of the most space for living and storage options for your belongings. This RV type shares all the features found in larger towable RVs, including the ability to detach the trailer at the campsite, making daily travel easier for your tow vehicle.
Length: 18 – 40 ft.
Average Cost: $12,000 to $250,000
Toy haulers combine a garage with a towable RV. They accommodate snowmobiles, ATVs and dirt bikes as well as other and sports “toys” like motorcycles, bikes and kayaks. Heavy duty foldable doors located in the rear of the trailer can be used as a ramp to load your belongings. Depending on the size of the garage, your living space will be limited compared to a towable RV of similar length. Toy haulers come in both travel trailer and fifth-wheel RV types.
Truck campers neither qualify as motorized nor towable RVs, as they are “mounted” in a bed of a pickup truck. Although they have similar features to smaller trailer RV types, 42 states don’t count them officially as an RV. This is because they are so small that they can be carried on a regular vehicle, so truck campers are considered more cargo than a vehicle themselves. They do make camping anywhere possible and give you a small taste of the RV life, but don’t plan sleeping more than a few comfortably.
When you’re ready for your first RV or ready for an upgrade, Juniata Valley RV is here to help. We have a variety of towable and motorized units for sale here in Pennsylvania. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for just yet, our expert staff is here to help. Contact us online, call or stop in today!