Editor’s note: When the ‘Big Three’ RV manufacturers announced in mid-July they would not be participating in Open House Week this year, that effectively cancelled the annual event. But RV PRO still talked to 68 product managers, division heads, marketing directors, and C-level executives to bring you this year’s 2021 model year preview. It’s in the September 2020 issue, and two of the companies featured are covered in today’s eNews.
With a busy year behind it, Alliance RV looks to 2021 as another chance to deliver on customer feedback.
Coming off the heels of the RV maker’s Paradigm fifth wheel lineup, the company is once again designing features based on responses from RVers who have shared their thoughts on what they’d like to see in a new toy hauler. For Alliance RV, that toy hauler is taking shape in the company’s forthcoming Valor line.
“The Valor is going to be a full-profile fifth wheel,” explains Coley Brady, co-founder of Alliance RV (Brady founded Alliance with his brother, Ryan Brady, in 2019). The lengths of the Valor, he says, will range from about 39 to 44 feet.
In addition to varying lengths, garage sizes on the Valor will range from 11 to 15 feet. Each floorplan on the Valor will feature an east-to- west bed slide, and the company plans to have five floorplans by the end of the year. The estimated target MSRP of the new lineup will range between approximately $90,000 to $110,000. Brady says production on the Valor is projected for the fourth quarter of this year.
Much like the Paradigm, Bill Martin, Alliance RV’s vice president of customer experience, says the Valor is largely the product of crowdsourcing and surveying users from forums like Facebook.
“We’ve received customer feedback and have addressed the pain points and desires with the new product,” he says. “That’s the inspiration for what we’re doing with the Valor.”
With the Valor, Alliance has incorporated some of the standard features from the Paradigm line but brought some new functionality.
“(One of) the new things we’ve included on the Valor is an industry-first, weatherproof ramp door,” says Brady. “Like our Paradigm, we’re also going to incorporate our heavy-duty running gear and flushed floor.”
The Valor also will use the Benchmark Chassis, formerly known as the Hercules Chassis, which was previously featured on the Paradigm.
With a new model on the horizon, Brady says the RV maker also is stepping up its output. Earlier this summer, the company celebrated the production of its 500th Paradigm, and demand continues to grow steadily.
“We’ve been gradually increasing rates since the beginning of the year since we started the production line, and we’ll continue to increase rates all the way to the end of the year,” he says.
With the Valor about to take shape, the RV maker’s initial focus on the luxury fifth wheel market seems bound to build more momentum.
To see the Alliance RV preview in RV PRO online, click here.
For Nexus RV, 2020 is the year of the Rebel.
COVID-19 threw a monkey wrench into Nexus’s plans to release its new Super C diesel Rebel 4X4, which it had hoped to launch just as the busy travel season was kicking off. But finally, in August, the company introduced what it calls the first major chassis upgrade to Class C or Super C motorhomes in 20 years.
The RV maker says that the Super C diesel segment is the fastest growing of all the motorhome segments at the moment, and Nexus means for the Rebel 4X4 to elbow its way into that market with some key unique features it offers.
To do that, it struck an exclusive agreement with International Trucks and is now the only RV maker in the business authorized to use an International chassis.
At the core of the Rebel 4X4 is the International CV chassis the vehicle is built on. With its 22,000-pound gross vehicle weight rating, the CV chassis is an exclusive project between Navistar and General Motors. Produced at Navistar’s plant in Springfield, Ohio, Nexus says the chassis is basically a 4/5 truck using a 350-horsepower Duramax diesel motor. The engine provides 700 foot-pounds of torque and can pull 15,000 pounds, the highest towing capacity of any motorhome in the Super C Diesel class, according to Nexus.
A six-speed Allison transmission turns the 19-1/2-inch Alcoa aluminum rims, and the Rebel features a Meritor gear-driven transfer case, which Nexus says is more reliable than a chain-driven one.
When work needs to be done under the hood, the Rebel offers a 4X4 tilt-forward hood, which makes the engine compartment much easier to access.
Another important feature, the RV maker says, is the Rebel’s 50-degree wheel cut, which transfers to a 25-foot turning radius and is much tighter than its competition, according to Nexus.
The new chassis also has fixed one common problem that comes up in the Super C segment – getting from the driver’s cab area back into the cabin area. Nexus says the taller International CV chassis eliminates what the company likes to call the “Army crawl.”
Nexus also stresses that the Rebel also comes with all of the things that make the company’s motorhomes stand out.
For one thing, Nexus makes the only all-steel motorhome in the industry, the company says, which means less squeaks and rattles and better durability over time.
Also, there is no wood in the superstructure of the vehicles – not in the sidewalls, the roof or the floor. Instead, the company uses double-layered Azdel composite panels, which it says prevents any sidewall separation or delamination from occurring. The inside of the cabin is powered by a 6.0 Quiet Diesel generator that runs off of the coach’s main fuel tanks, as opposed to some of its competitors’ models that use a propane generator. The coach has three sources of air conditioning and three sources of heat.
Appliances include a Whirlpool electric refrigerator and a 30-inch microwave mounted over a three-burner stove top.
Sleeping quarters include a queen-size bed, a cabover bunk area, a couch that folds out to sleep on, and the 35R unit has additional bunk beds.
While the Rebel 4X4 is Nexus’s big splash for 2021, the company says that it has a couple of other notable updates for its motorhome lineup: a new 30-foot floorplan for its Triumph Super C, and a new floorplan, the 37DS, featuring a bath and a half, for its Ghost luxury Super C.
To see the Nexus preview in RV PRO online, click here.
See the nuCamp and Leisure Travel Vans previews here