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Welcome to our second of two blog posts and related videos about our highlights from the 2019 California RV show. If you haven’t already seen part one, you can click here to check it out.
Continuing on from our highlight approach from part one, we will be covering a variety of RVs in this second post and video. We’ll have a look at many different towable RVs, and some motorized. From small trailers able to be towed behind most cars, to big fifth wheels and toy-haulers, including the RV voted Best in Show. Also new truck campers, Class A, and Super C motorhomes. Watch the video, and/or read on below for more information. Let’s jump in.
Toy Haulers Everywhere
The California RV show of course had differences and similarities when compared with other RV shows we have attended. There were different manufacturers represented than some of the shows. One of the most dramatic differences in the types of RVs was that this show had so many more toy-hauler RVs than we have seen at other shows.
I guess it is their proximity to so many places to get out and play with those toys, and the consistent weather year round. There were many booths that exclusively carried toy-haulers like Attitude, Steller and Iconic. But even booths not focused entirely on RVs with garages, were sure to bring a selection of toy-hauling RVs as well.
Best of Show Keystone Fuzion 424
As you might imagine, with such a focus on toy-haulers at this show, it made sense that the RV chosen as Best of Show would also be a toy-hauler. The 2020 Keystone Fuzion 424 had a couple significant innovations that made it stand out.
Nearly all toy-haulers have a rear loading ramp. Many of those in recent years offer the option of converting that ramp into a rear deck once your toys and gear are unloaded. Some floor plans also offer side decks off of the rear section of the RV. But this new Fuzion 424 had a unique twist to folding out decks, in addition to the rear deck.
The Fuzion 424 had a front patio deck right off of the main entry door. The door was a fully glass, patio type door, and there was even an outside TV on this ‘front’ deck. Very innovative entry space we haven’t seen before. It really changes the feel, making it seem even more like a traditional home.
The floor plan inside was innovative too. Partly thanks to the unique kitchen layout that opens up for you when you come in the main entry. But also thanks to the innovative kitchen seating area with a fixed table and 4 swing out stools. This made for a very open feeling space, with less furniture.
It was a very spacious RV with nice amenities and unique features. Something worth checking out if you are in the market for a large toy-hauler.
Keystone Montana 3761FL
There were tons of nice fifth wheel trailers at the show. Another one that caught my eye was the Keystone Montana 3761FL. The model at the RV show was sporting full body paint, and a beautiful fresh new styling to the inside.
Outside paint was silver, white and black. Inside continued with calming gray wood grain cabinetry and lighter colors. We were actually really happy to see many manufacturers at the show shifting away from mostly brown and beige interiors of the past. Much more light gray, or other more modern looks.
As the ‘FL’ in the name hints, this is a Front Living room floor plan. The front living room area had three couches, and a big TV on a televator in front of the large front window. The bedroom was in the rear of the RV with a king size bed, and a bathroom with dual sinks along the back wall.
Both the front living area and the rear bedroom were elevated. This allows for large basement storage areas underneath the front and back of the RV. The rear storage area could likely even accept hard sided kayaks or other large items. Kitchen was spacious and included an island. There was also a half bath right off the kitchen, making this a one and a half bath RV.
Other notable features on this Keystone Montana 3761FL included disc brakes, and very good insulation for all season use. They claimed that it was rated for zero degrees farenheit temperatures.
Little Guy Campers
Maybe you are looking for something much smaller. Something for shorter trips that won’t need a big truck to tow. There were some great options offered at the booth for Little Guy Campers. Little Guy Campers sell RVs from a variety of manufacturers, but most always focus on small lightweight RVs. Some basic units were only $15,000 and could be towed by small cars.
At their booth, they had some Luna teardrop style RVs with kitchens on the back. These teardrops don’t allow space to stand inside, but are very lightweight and could be towed by a very wide range of vehicles. The outside kitchen is spacious and fun, as long as the weather is good. But hey… we are RVers, and are generally out in good weather right?
Other new RVs at their booth were these stylish trailers from Sol. I loved their huge front windows allowing you to take in the views at your favorite camping spot. These were fully self contained, stand up inside RVs. Their styling was modern, and floor plans seemed quite functional. The Sol Horizon was especially nice with a dedicated bed and separate dining area. Though you will need a bit larger vehicle to tow these. The Horizon weighed closer to 3,800 lbs, and cost around $38,000.
Northern Lite Truck Campers
Having seen them on the road, but never close up, I was excited to check out the truck campers from Northern Lite. I like that they are built with two piece fiberglass, similar to clamshell type travel trailers. This construction type tends to be durable, well insulated and very unlikely to leak.
Northern Lite also keeps all components insulated inside the shell allowing for it to withstand colder climates, qualifying for four season use. It also keeps them lighter. Their truck campers range from 2300 to 3300 lbs.
Inside the truck camper, they used high quality woods and hinges. It felt like a very well built RV. Styling was more traditional in most of their units, but seemed good quality. I also liked that they had a 6 year warranty on the structure.
One potential downside to others might be that with this construction style, they of course do not offer any units with slide outs for extra room. Personally, when looking at truck campers, I like the simplicity of this unit. It feels like it will hold up to more rugged use for longer, and less to go wrong. Also, some truck campers with slide outs need to have the slide outs out in order to actually access important areas like the bathroom, fridge, or bed area.
Another popular Truck camper company is Lance. They are a California based company and produce a wide range of trailers and truck campers. We have seen them at many shows and know a number of people who full time in their RVs.
At the California RV show, Lance was conducting a sweepstakes where they were giving away a Lance trailer model 1475. It is a nice small trailer. One that we had looked at as a potential to tow behind our Jeep. Entries for the sweepstakes were accepted through Oct 14, the drawing is in December.
Entegra Reatta XL
For those unfamiliar with Entegra, they have traditionally been a manufacturer of exclusively large luxury diesel pusher motorhomes. In the last couple years they have been significantly expanding their product offering. First expanding into the Class C RVs, and gasoline powered Class As. Then more recently expanding into Super C, and a more entry level diesel Class A coach called the Reatta.
There are actually two versions of the Reatta. The regular Reatta and the Reatta XL. Both are built on the Spartan K1 chassis which offers independent front suspension. This is a rare feature on Class A diesel motorhomes in this price point. The main difference between the Reatta and Reatta XL is that the XL offers a 380hp engine instead of the 360 in the non-XL.
Though the two Reatta models have some design elements in common with the larger luxury Entegras, they are on different chassis, and also have different construction style. Most fiberglass walled RVs these days use vacuum bonded walls. The luxury Entegras (and Newmar actually) both use residential type insulation and different wall construction techniques)
The floor plan I walked through was a 40 ft long Reatta XL. It was a nice one and a half bath, floor plan. We think it is interesting to continue to watch the expansion of the Entegra line of RVs. It was a pretty quick expansion because of their relationship with parent company Jayco and their existing models that have been modified to carry the Entegra name. Many more options for consumers to choose from whether upgrading or downsizing.
Renegade Verona 34VQB Super C
Similar to seeing many toy-haulers in the towable RVs, we definitely saw a higher percentage of Super C and other more rugged or off-road focused motorized RVs. Renegade RV is a brand almost exclusively focused on building Super C motorhomes. So I stopped by their booth to ask what was new in their RV lineup.
The rep I spoke with said that one of their newest models was the 34VQB. Most all of their larger Super Cs built on the Frieghtliner chassis are 36-45 feet long. This new model was under 34’ feet long but still has the massive towing capacities that many look for in their Super Cs.
This unit had a 20,000 lb towing capacity and 3,000 lb tongue weight. Tongue weight is how much weight of the trailer can rest on the hitch of the towing vehicle. Most Class A diesel motorhomes have 10,000 towing capacity and substantially lower tongue weight. This is because diesel pusher motorhomes have the heavy engine behind the rear wheels, weighing down on the rear axle already.
Inside the Renegade was a pretty simple but spacious floor plan Unlike most Super Cs, the over cab area was smaller, not offering a sleeping area. It was only used for overhead storage. Other higher end features on this coach included Girard awnings, and diesel aqua-hot water heating.
Renegade RV (and many other manufacturers at the show) also had new Super C models based on the Ford F550 chassis that offered four wheel drive.
Happy to see that most booths / stands actually had relevance to RVs and RV living. Sometimes when you go to RV shows, the vendor tents are half filled with vendors that have little or no relevance to the lifestyle. Just things you might buy on home shopping network. Below are some of our highlights from the vendor tent area.
We spent a lot of time at the Camp California / CampgroundViews.com booth, with our friends Mark, Brett and Danelle (who you might recognize from our Ultimate RV Makeover series).
Julie loved these inflatable stand up paddleboards from Voltsurf. She loved that they were only 25 lbs. So they would be easy to carry to the water, and easy to carry in your RV, even if your RV is small. Voltsurf also had inflatable docks.
I liked the idea of these trailer moving equipment. They were very compact and powerful. Great to move your trailer without hooking up to a truck, especially important if you need to park it in tight spaces when storing at a home base.
We heard a lot of people raving about a this booth selling flag pole mounts, and poles They sold flags, but also sold custom made quick-release flag pole attachments that would make flying a flag much easier and therefore more appealing. Whether you have a large flag pole on your RV, or a smaller one on your ATV or toy, they offer a big variety of custom mounts depending on your needs. Email [email protected] for more information.
Wrapping Up Our Experiences
There were many booths for campgrounds, and campground memberships. Including our favorite, Thousand trails. Our Thousand Trails Membership literally saves us thousands of dollars every year. We have written a lot about them here on our website for you to learn more.
All in all, we really enjoyed walking through the offerings in the vendor tent, and really enjoyed this 10 day RV show.
We hope that our posts and videos about the California RV show gave you a great taste of what it was like. RV shows are always something we enjoy, and we are already looking forward to the next one. Hope to see you at one someday. Thank you for visiting. Until next time, we’ll see you on the road.
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3 thoughts on “California RV Show Highlights and Trends Part 2”
Hey Mark, I detected an over abundance of enthusiasm during your video #2 coverage of trailers. What are the chances of dropping/changing from CC in favour of a fifth-wheel or other towable? Great review btw for a show that provides some industry trends and one that many won’t have an opportunity to attend …. thank you!
Hi Ron and Cathy – haha! Julie here, replying for Marc who is sitting beside me. Yes, he was excited about a few things he saw, especially the Black Series trailers in video 1 actually. Marc is more open to a fifth wheel than I am. I am just not a truck person (he is) and we love our Jeep. He has done the math on a change to a truck and fiver, but in the end, it just makes more sense to stay with CC. We really love the coach, especially since the remodel. And the Class A motorhome experience in general. Sometimes Marc gets tired of fixing things on CC, she is 20yo after all, so there is always something and fortunately he . But that’s RVLIFE and financially, it just doesn’t make sense to change, just for the sake of it, or for a different experience. So no plans to change CC in the forseeable future! 🙂