List of recreational vehicles
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This is a list of types of RVs from the article recreational vehicle.
Class A motorhome
Constructed on either a commercial truck chassis, a specially designed motor vehicle chassis, or a commercial bus chassis, a Class A motorhome resembles a bus in design and has a flat or vertical front end and large windows. The addition of slideouts dramatically changed the industry because they allow a wider living area, provided that the vehicle remains completely stationary during their extension outwards.
Class B motorhome (campervan)
Built using a conventional van, to which either a raised roof has been added or the back replaced by a low-profile body (aka coach-built). In Australia, a Class B motorhome is quite distinct from a campervan, as it is based on a very large van that is, in turn, based on a truck. These motorhomes weigh up to 4500 kg and measure up to 6.4m in length. Popular vehicle makes include the Ford Trader and Isuzu NPR 300.
Most Australian campervans are based on much smaller vehicles such as the Toyota HiAce, while the middle ground is now populated by larger vans that blur the definition of campervan or motorhome. These include the Ford Transit, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Fiat Ducato, and Iveco.
In the United States and Canada, class B motorhomes are built on several different chassis depending on the motorhome manufacturer and engine design aims. Common chassis include the Mercedes Benz Sprinter diesel, the Dodge Ram Promaster gas, the Chevrolet Express gas, and the Ford Transit gas and diesel.
In the State of California USA, in order to qualify as Class B RV a vehicle must have four of the following six built in items. 1. A water system, typically a sink or shower 2. A refrigerator 3. A cooking system 4. A fuel or 110v electrical system 5. An AC unit or heater 6. A toilet
Class C motorhome
A Class C motorhome is built upon a minimal truck platform with a forward engine and transmission connected by driveshaft to a rear axle that propels dual-mounted rear wheels. Class C motorhomes are typically powered by gasoline (petrol) engines, although some have been converted to run on propane (autogas) while others use diesels. Transmissions are almost always automatic. The original chassis is equipped from the truck factory to the coach builder with an attached forward cab section that is van or conventional truck based (known as a cutaway chassis). In North America, the Ford E350 or E450 chassis are the most typical in the 21st century, while in prior times the Dodge/Ram and Chevrolet/GMC chassis were also used. Some smaller micro motorhomes were produced on Nissan and Toyota platforms from 1972-1994, Toyota Motorhomes continue to have a strong following. Some very large Class C motorhomes are based on even larger truck platforms, such as the Ford F650 and Freightliner XC chassis. In Europe, Ford and Fiat manufacture the majority of Class C motorhome chassis.
The rigid outer weatherproof superstructure of a Class C motorhome (attached onto the original cab and chassis) was typically constructed of a wooden frame covered by sheet metal, but in recent decades such materials as fibreglass, plastics, composites, and lightweight metals have become the norm. With the introduction of slideouts, the earlier design notion of increasing interior space by lengthening the entire motorhome (thus escalating the purchase price) gave way to new designs that offer increased width (albeit only possible in a completely stationary vehicle) while no longer requiring additional length.
Class C motorhomes are characterized by a distinctive cab-over profile, containing either an upper sleeping area, a storage space, or a TV/entertainment section. In the UK, the cab-over is known as a Luton peak or Luton body. A Class C motorhome is equipped with a kitchen/dining area featuring a refrigerator/freezer, a propane range (sometimes with an oven), a microwave oven, and a table with seating. It also has a lavatory with bath/shower, and has one or more sleeping areas as well as additional seating towards the front. An air conditioner, a water heater, a furnace, and an outside canopy are usually included. Optional equipment available at additional expense typically includes a generator set and roof-mounted solar power panels.
A sub-category of Class C motorhomes is the toy hauler, which combines a typical configuration with additional enclosed space aft dedicated to hauling dirt bikes, bicycles, ATVs or the like. Class C motorhomes often feature a towing hitch enabling the pulling of a light weight trailer such as for boats, or of a small car or truck. Class C motorhomes may also be referred to in some places as mini-motorhomes.
A truck camper is a living space unit that is temporarily mounted into the bed of a pickup truck and secured against any tipping or wobbling while the truck is in motion. Great care must be taken in matching the weight and center balance point of the truck camper with the capabilities of the pickup truck itself in order to maintain safe handling of the vehicle while driving. Truck campers are much favored by those who do not wish to own a motorhome or trailer for only part-time use when the need for a truck is otherwise present.
Common uses are for backwoods travel, hunting, fishing, and particularly in North America on four wheel drive vehicles for off-roading or via rough roads to campsites. The smallest of truck campers provide a sleeping area with perhaps an ice box and storage cabinetry, while top-of-the-line campers feature a refrigerator/freezer, propane range/oven, microwave oven, air conditioner, furnace, water heater, and lavatory with shower. With the introduction of slideouts, the earlier design notion of increasing interior space by lengthening the entire camper (thus escalating the purchase price) gave way to new designs that offer increased width (albeit only possible in a completely stationary vehicle) while no longer requiring additional length.
Typical North American consumer grade pickup trucks used for hauling full size slideout-equipped campers are of the Chevrolet/GMC 2500 through 3500 range, the Ram 2500 through 3500 range, and the Ford F-250 through 350 range, usually with long box bed lengths and sometimes with dual-mounted rear tires for the heaviest camper models.
Also known as a folding trailer, tent camper, tent trailer, or camper trailer a popup trailer is a light-weight unit with pull-out bunks and tent walls that collapses for towing and storage. These are suitable for towing by most vehicles, particularly compact cars, minivans, SUVs, or small pickup trucks.
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A unit with rigid sides designed to be towed usually by a pickup truck, SUV, or minivan with a bumper or frame hitch. In the past, very large North American cars, particularly station wagons, were used for towing as well as trucks such as Chevrolet or GMC Suburbans, Ford Broncos, etc. In Britain (UK) they are known as caravans. Bumper pull travel trailers like those made by Airstream and Jayco range from 19' to 34' long. They are typically pulled by a large SUV or light to medium pickup truck (class 2, 3 or 4). Bumper pull travel trailers have between 1 and 4 axles.
A compact, lightweight travel trailer that resembles a large teardrop, sometimes seen being towed by motorcycles.
A blend between a travel trailer and a folding (tent) trailer. One type has rigid sides and pull-out tent sections (usually beds) while another type's top section of walls and its roof can be lowered over its bottom section to reduce its height for towing.
Designed to be towed by a pickup or medium duty truck equipped with a special in-box hitch called a fifth wheel coupling. Part of the trailer body extends over the truck bed, shortening the total length of the vehicle and trailer combined. Some larger fifth-wheel trailers, usually over 40 feet (12.2 m) in length and 18,000 pounds (8,200 kg) in weight, are often pulled by semi-trucks, such as a small Freightliner or full size class 8 truck like a Peterbilt or Volvo. Fifth-wheel trailers have become increasingly popular since they first became commercially available in the late 1960s. For some pickup truck owners the downside of a Fifth-wheel trailer versus a conventional frame-hitch-mount travel trailer is that the former takes up valuable space inside the box owing to its special hitch, so that if uncoupling the trailer at a remote location in order to use just the truck with its empty box a great deal of work and messiness is required to remove the hitch.
Park model (vacation/resort cottage)
This is a larger travel trailer — usually 35 to 45 feet long — that is not self-contained. It is designed for park camping only; and while it is easily moved from site to site as a normal trailer is, it is not capable of "dry camping" as it does not have any water storage tanks and must be used with hookups. Though designed to remain stationary for extended periods of time, park models differ from mobile homes in that they are usually still sporadically moved (often seasonally).
There are varying regulations in different states in the United States that affect the conversion of a school bus into an Recreational Vehicle (RV). Some states, such as California and Illinois, require that the bus's signaling equipment (stop sign, flashing lights, etc.) be removed and the school bus yellow paint scheme be changed. Other states simply require that the "School Bus" signage at the top front and rear be removed.
In other countries, a second driving license specific to commercial vehicles may be required to purchase and legally own the vehicle, even before any works are performed on it. In the UK, for example, owners of a Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) require a Category D1 or D license to drive it on the UK's road network. Lacking such a license will make transporting the vehicle once purchased especially difficult.
Note that if one is driving a large vehicle (more than a certain GVWR) one normally needs a Commercial Driver's License. However, if one is driving the vehicle strictly for personal reasons such as recreation, such a license is not required. However, if one ventures into Canada and has air brakes, such a license (or a regular license with airbrake endorsement) is required. If one does not have such an endorsement, one's bus will be parked until a properly licensed driver is engaged to move it.
- "Feel at home on the road". The Courier-Mail. Brisbane. 19 June 2010.
- Particularly in Australia