We have to confess that this is our first time purchasing and using a Motorhome. As with anything new there is going to be a learning curve and this case has proven to be no exception.
We purchased a 2017 Thor Ace 29.3 on 3-11-2017. Our total purchase including extended warranty came to just over $93,000. Included in that total was a charge of $500 for a walk-through and orientation. The dealership originally wanted $700 but when I questioned the validity of the charge they dropped it to $500.
Now $500 compared to the overall price of $93,000 may seem insignificant but as you will see further in this letter the $500 and $600 charges keep adding up! The walk-through and orientation was supposed to be designed to familiarize the customer with the outer and inner workings of the motor coach. Our orientation was on a Saturday afternoon. We expected that the motor coach would be in pristine condition.
Unfortunately it was not. There were still sales stickers attached to windows, the front windshield had been cleared of sales stickers but still had residue from glue. The trim around the inside of the entrance door was loose. The trim on the sink countertop had been taped down and when the tape was removed the trim piece was still loose.
These may seem like minor things but it is a reflection of the overall preparation and quality control put into the motorhome. While we were being shown the various aspects and workings of the motorhome we were also being distracted by an energetic 8 year old boy. He was the son of one of the mechanics who had been called in on his day off and didn't have a sitter for the boy. Instead the boy's father let him run loose throughout the dealership.
The boy was crawling in and out of our motorhome, crawling into the storage compartments and so on. Having never owned a motorhome before it was very important for us to learn as much as we could. After all, we did pay $500 for this orientation. Long story short we were distracted and missed a number things that were wrong with the motorhome and didn't really get a full understanding of how the systems on the motorhome worked.
The following Monday I returned the motorhome to the dealership after having noticed one of the brackets on the slideout awning was missing. It turns out the dealership had taken the bracket off our motorhome when it was on display in the showroom and used it on another unit. The dealership forgot to order a replacement. In addition, during the trip from the dealership to our home which is 2 miles away, part of the trim above the couch in the main seating area came loose and fell down.
Additionally we noticed the flooring on the passenger side front of the motorhome was loose and needed to be properly trimmed and reglued. We also noticed that the veneer seam between two of the lower kitchen cabinets was jagged and torn from the top of the cabinet all the way to the bottom. The dealership had to order all new veneer for that. Additionally, one of the outside compartment doors was slightly bent as if the door had been sprung.
The dealership ended up ordering a new door. The inside door that separates the bedroom from the rest of the coach had come off its mounting at the bottom. We ended repairing the door and installed a strap to stop it from slamming back and forth. Bottom line we feel cheated.
We paid $500 for an orientation which fell far short of expectations. Not only that but the employee who was conducting the orientation complained on several occasions that his normal duties didn't usually include doing orientations. We blame part of this situation on the dealership and a large portion on the factory where the motorhome was made. It seems clear to us that Quality Control was not a major concern.
The overall fit and trim of the motorhome was less than satisfactory. Another problem with this motorhome is the stearing and handling. James is retired military and drove tractor-trailers throughout Europe in the 1980's. He states that the handling on those military trucks was far superior to that on the Thor Ace 29.3.
Further research on several internet chat rooms revealed to us that it would be necessary to purchase and have installed a "Steering Buffer" in order to achieve acceptable handling characteristics. That cost us another $602. Obviously the factory and dealership are both aware of this issue and yet we were never advised of the problem nor offered the opportunity to have it taken care of before we accepted delivery of the motorhome. This problem should be fixed at the factory.
Another expense that we didn't expect was Satelite. The motorhome comes with a manual TV antenna for local channels only. What we can't understand is why the factory doesn't prewire the motorhome for satelite. It would be extremely easy for the factory to do so and would save the consumer a lot of money in the long run.
As it is we had to purchase a satelite unit and control box for $400 and then have the dealership install it for us at $120 an hour for labor. Our motorhome has 3 TVs but we only had one hooked up to satelite because to have all 3 hooked up would have cost us $1000 in labor! The latest problem is with the dining room table which folds down into a bed.
When we lifted the table back up it tore loose of the mechanism that raises and lowers it. I haven't even bothered to take it to the dealership, will try to fix it myself.
Product or Service Mentioned: Rv.
Reason of review: Bad quality.
Monetary Loss: $93000.
Preferred solution: Let the company propose a solution.
I liked: Floor plan.
I didn't like: Product quality, Quality of product, Warranty service is slow at best, Customer service.