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What Is a Class C Motorhome: Features and Advantages

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Published : September 6, 2022
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Class C motorhomes are probably the most recognizable out there thanks to their distinctive sleeping and storage area placed above the driver's cab. They are an increasingly popular choice for larger families and groups who require extra living space but still wish to enjoy a more compact and easy-to-maneuver RV. Here is everything you need to know about a Class C motorhome – its specs, amenities, requirements, advantages, and more!

What Is a Class C Motorhome? – Definition

What is a Class C RV if not the perfect hybrid? This is where Class A and Class B meet, creating a compact motorhome with plenty of living space. They normally come at a lower price than Class A RVs, are smaller in size, but have a better fuel consumption rate and multiple slideouts for additional sleeping and storage options. They are a great choice for bigger families and groups who like to travel in comfort and be able to pack additional luggage.

What Is a Class C+ Motorhome?

A Class C+ Motorhome is a bigger, more powerful, safer, and easier to maintain Class C type. To reach their high specs, manufacturers are now building them on a truck chassis. They have a high towing capacity and considerable living and storage space. These larger models are usually diesel-powered, built with durable materials, and you can find them in a wide range of floor plans. 

C+ models can weigh over 30,000 pounds and are usually between 32 to 45 feet long. Their distinctive shape also makes room for an important safety feature – the motor on these models is incorporated into the front of the RV, protecting the driver during a collision.

Class C+ models can vary immensely in design, having a larger chassis available for hosting amenities. Depending on the manufacturer, some Class C+ models have extras like emergency doors, up to 4 slide-outs, temperature control systems, and basement storage.

Class C Model Motorhomes: Features and Specs

One of the most attractive traits of Class C motorhomes is how easy they are to drive. Although it may take a little time to accommodate to its size, driving a Class C RV is definitely more pleasant than handling a large Class A. Class C models range between 20 and 30 feet in length and 10 to 12 feet in height. Standard models can accommodate from 4 to 8 people, while some C+ models can host up to 11.

A Class C motorhome can tow another vehicle or boat, having an average towing capacity of 8,000 pounds. Depending on the model, adventurers and sports lovers will have additional storage space for depositing extra gear like kayaks and bicycles.

Class C RVs Specs

Class C motorhomes drive similarly to other passenger vehicles. Although compact, Class C RVs can pose some difficulties when trying to squeeze them into tight parking spots. Considering that Class C models can feature multiple slide-outs and features like outdoor kitchens, parking them in a good spot is key if you wish to camp for a longer period of time. As opposed to Class A RVs, Class C models are easier to maneuver, can access more roads, and will be allowed to access campgrounds, and natural or state parks that won't normally accept larger Class A models.

The technical specs for standard models include:

  • Storage: Ranges from moderate to high, with several storage compartments.
  • Weight: 10,000 to 20,000 pounds.
  • Gas mileage: Ranges from 17 to 22 miles per gallon.
  • Sleeping capacity: Accommodates 4 to 8 adults, and up to 11 in C+ models.
  • Carriage type: Van chassis or truck chassis.
  • Fuel: The average tank size normally ranges between 25 to 50 gallons.
  • Other amenities: full kitchens, bathrooms, living rooms, cab-over beds, fold-out beds, slide-outs for extra living space, entertainment centers, and more.
  • Price range: Ranges from $50,000 to $100,000 and can go as far as $250,000 with the Class C+ models.

Class C Model Motorhomes: Standard and Special Amenities

Class C models offer a wide range of amenities, at a more affordable price than a Class A RV. Despite their smaller size, these motorhomes can easily become a space to live in full-time. With fully equipped kitchens and spacious living areas, Class C RVs are a great option for those looking for the necessary comforts of a home. 

Standard and special amenities of Class C motorhomes include:

  • Sleeping: Sleeping areas usually accommodate up to 8 people, with convertible bunk beds, king-sized beds, and an extra bed above the driver's cab.
  • Kitchens: Class C RVs can feature fully-equipped kitchens with microwaves, stoves, refrigerators, tops, sinks, and more, as well as outdoor kitchens.
  • Dining Areas: Dining areas can be equipped with a dinette or a freestanding table with four chairs, or turned into sofa seating areas. 
  • Bathrooms: Most models allow for a variety of full-sized bathrooms and showers. Some Class C models can even come with a bathtub.
  • Solar Power Setup: Because many models don't come with solar prep, panels are a popular configuration for Class C RVs.
  • Water Tank: Class C RVs have an oversized fresh water tank, as well as black water, and gray water tanks, allowing travelers to camp for longer periods.
  • Storage Space: Plenty of storage options, from built-in wardrobes to chests of drawers and overcab loft beds that can be used as a storage space.

Some of the best motorhome manufacturers include Winnebago, Thor Motor Coach, Coachmen, Forest River, and Jayco. Class C motorhomes are welcoming to almost any extra configuration, giving their owners a chance to customize their living space based on personal preferences.

Class C Model Motorhomes Pros and Cons

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Around 39% of first-time owners opt for a Class C motorhome, and that is no surprise. This compact, fully-equipped RV type comes with plenty of advantages for those looking for an affordable alternative to the comforts and luxurious amenities you'd normally get with a Class A motorhome.

Compact and easy to maneuver, Class C RVs are ideal for those who enjoy a comfortable living space and a pleasant drive. There are many advantages to owning a Class C RV:

  • Reasonable prices for a wide range of amenities and great specs
  • Easier to drive than a Class A RV
  • Easy engine and RV maintenance. You will be able to find replaceable parts easily, especially if the model is built on a Ford chassis
  • Extra living and storage space from overhead compartments and slideouts
  • Possibility to tow a second vehicle (TOAD) or up to 8,000 pounds
  • Smaller in size than a Class A, thus easier to maneuver and park
  • Better equipped for boondocking than other models, with room for bathrooms and water tanks 
  • Spacious living and accommodation areas with master bedrooms, outdoor kitchens, and fully-equipped bathrooms and dining areas
  • Safer traveling thanks to the front crash box protecting the driver in case of a head-on collision
  • Better gas mileage than a Class A RV
  • Passengers have extra privacy thanks to the multiple accommodation options 
  • Moving from living to driving doesn't require you to step outside the RV
  • Easier to find the desired model on the market
  • Can be customized to meet the needs of its owner
  • Owners can save money by not needing a second towing vehicle
  • Travelers can transport equipment like bikes, kayaks, and other adventure gear

Nevertheless, the purpose of an RV is to meet the individual needs of each owner. While Class C motorhomes may sound ideal to first-time buyers, others will notice some of their cons:

  • Worse mileage than a Class B motorhome, but better than a Class A
  • Driving a Class C RV can be difficult at first, with its size imposing a challenge when trying to fit through or park into tight spots
  • You might need an extra vehicle for further exploration. Once parked, Class C RVs should normally stay put for long to avoid paying extra every time you camp
  • Can be noisy when turning the ignition or running the generator
  • Can be more expensive and provide less storage space in comparison to other travel trailers or Class A RVs
  • Cannot be parked in tight spaces and driving on rocky rural roads can impose difficulties

In the end, it all comes down to how you are planning on using the RV. While some owners count on their motorhomes to travel the world, others will look for the pleasures of camping as comfortably as possible.

To help you make up your mind, you can begin by deciding what your traveling or living experience should look like. Will you need to accommodate many people? For how long are you planning to travel? It is important to decide on the purpose of your new RV from the start and, of course, the investment you are willing to make.

Who Should Use a Class C Model Motorhome?

Class C motorhomes are a popular choice for adventurers who wish to bring some of their gear along. With the possibility to tow another vehicle and customize the RV with extras such as bike racks, Class C models get extra points from sports lovers, explorers, and boating fans.

Families will be the happiest to travel with a Class C RV, as the included amenities can satisfy the needs of every member. Children have lots of room to play and spend quality time with their families, while adults can get all the privacy they need. Depending on the RV model, kids can also enjoy a fun bunkhouse, while the adults can focus on driving to the destination. The biggest advantage of a C model is the possibility to accommodate up to 8 people in standard models, allowing large families to travel together. 

Full-timers should have a close look at Class C motorhomes, as they provide all the necessities you'd normally in a home. C models are also fuel-efficient, meaning that you can eliminate some of the extra costs and make fewer pit stops on the way.

Last but not least, pet lovers! If you own a pet, you will know how difficult it can sometimes be to travel with them for longer periods of time. The additional space you'd have with a Class C RV is ideal for your pets to roam freely and enjoy the trip even when they involve a very long drive. 

What Are the License Requirements to Drive a Class C RV?

You'd only need a standard driver’s license to operate a Class C RV. No special license is necessary to drive any RV camper under 26,000, and most C Class RVs weigh only between 10,000 and 20,000 pounds. 

What to Look for in a Class C Model RV?

First, you will have to decide on a budget for your next purchase. This will help you decide whether you should buy a used or a new Class C motorhome. Renting a model and testing it out can also help you decide if Class C feels right for you. 

If you decide to purchase a used RV, the advice is to check everything related to the vehicle's history. That can include checking the roof for leaks or any other damage, verifying the AC unit, ensuring that all windows and doors work properly, and spotting any water damage and mold. Making sure that a used RV is in good condition can be a tough task for first-time buyers. If possible, have a mechanic inspect the condition of the RV and make sure to ask questions about the vehicle's history or any changes it has suffered.

What Is a Class C Motorhome? Bottom Line

We hope that we have provided all the answers to the question “What is a Class C motorhome?” and brought you closer to your first motorhome. The bottom line is that Class C RVs are a great addition to any family or large group that has traveling at heart, providing all the necessary comfort you would get in a home. If you have any more questions about Class C motorhomes, continue reading what other people are asking about.

Class C Model RVs: FAQs

Here's a list of answers to what most people in your position wish to learn more about:

What does a class C model motorhome look like?

Class C RVs can be easily spotted and recognized, thanks to their distinctive overhead sleeping or storage cab.

What is the best class C model of motorhomes?

Most users rank the top C RV class models as follows:

  • Winnebago View
  • Tiffin Wayfarer
  • Coachmen Freelander
  • Jayco Redhawk
  • Forest River Forester
  • Thor Compass

How much does a class C motorhome cost?

Prices range from $50,000 to $100,000, however, prices can go up to $250,000 and beyond for some of the more luxurious C+ models and best RV brands.

What is the lifespan of a Class C Model RV?

Class C models that are well-maintained can last up to 200,000 miles or beyond. The average Class C motorhome can last anywhere from 10 to 30 years.  

Where do you park a Class C model motorhome?

Class C RVs are compact and smaller in size than Class A models, allowing them to navigate easily through more roads and camp in more places – national and state parks, parking lots, campgrounds, and even on the street if the city allows for overnight parking. Make sure you check the city's rules and requirements before parking your RV in public places.

What to do with an old Class C model motorhome?

You can sell your used Class C RV directly to us, or make use of alternatives like posting a local ad or organizing a garage sale. Before doing so, decide whether or not you'd be interested in remodeling your RV into an extra living space on your property!

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