There are three classes of RVs: A, B, and C. Not everyone realizes the differences between the classes, though.
Is a Class C RV your perfect match, or would you rather pair up with an A or B? Let’s see how your needs line up with the three different classes of motorhomes so you can make an informed choice.
Knowing their pros and cons can help you decide which kind will take you on your adventures.
Let’s dive in!
What Is a Class C RV?
If you’re visualizing a medium-sized motorhome, a Class C is probably what you have in mind. They typically range in length from about 20 ft up to around 40.
They’re smaller than Class A coaches, which are more like buses, and bigger than Class Bs, which are decked-out vans.
Class C has a van-style cab in front of a boxy living area. They’re almost like a moving truck but with a travel trailer attached to the back instead of an open compartment. Another distinctive characteristic is the cab-over area on top in the front, which is usually where you’ll find the bedroom.
Class C RVs typically sit on a medium-duty truck or van chassis. They have their engine in the front, and most of them run on gasoline rather than diesel.
Pro Tip: Unsure what RV class type is right for you? Learn more about the The Pros and Cons of RV Class Types.
Class C Versus Super C Explained
There’s a subcategory of Class C RVs called the Super C motorhome. They’re like a Class C on steroids. They’re built on a sturdier heavy-duty truck chassis and are more likely to have a diesel engine.
They have more luxury features and offer a smoother ride than a classic Class C. As you can imagine, they cost quite a bit more, too.
Pros and Cons of Class C RVs
All of the different styles of RVs have their good points and bad points.
First up, let’s take a look at what a Class C RV has in its favor. Then we’ll list a few of the Class C’s downsides.
Pro: Spacious Interior
A Class C doesn’t measure up to a Class A in terms of living space. However, it’s much roomier than Class Bs and many travel trailers. Many of them have two or even three slide-outs, which greatly expand the amount of square footage.
With bunks, Class Cs can accommodate up to eight people, though that would probably seem pretty crowded in any RV.
That cab-over area leaves more space below for the kitchen, bath, and other sleeping areas.
Pro: Decent-Sized Holding Tanks
The bigger your tanks, the longer you can stay in one place. The freshwater tank on a Class C holds an average of 35 to 60 gallons.
This compares to 75 to 100 gallons for a Class A, and 20 to 40 gallons for a Class B. Tanks for gray and black water on a Class C typically hold 30 to 40 gallons each.
Pro: Comfortable to Drive
If you’ve ever rented a moving van like those from U-Haul or Ryder, you’re good to go. There’s just not much of a learning curve when it comes to driving a Class C RV. (Don’t try a U-turn right away, though.)
The bulkier Class A coaches, on the other hand, are a lot more challenging, especially at first.
Con: Limited Floorplan Variety
The sleeping configurations can differ a bit, but most Class Cs have the same basic features. Inside, you’ll find a dining area, small kitchen, and a bath, but don’t expect the luxury amenities that a Class A RV has.
Other than the number of slides, most manufacturers don’t offer any drastically different floorplan options.
Con: Limited Exterior Storage
Any experienced RVer knows you can never have quite enough space for all your stuff. Lots of Class C RVs suffer from a lack of storage space, especially outside.
You’ll have an external storage bay or two, but Class As and fifth wheel trailers have much larger “basement” areas.
Con: Longer Models Are Hard to Maneuver
A smaller Class B motorhome is certainly more nimble and can get you in and out of some pretty remote places.
You certainly can’t do that in a more cumbersome Class A. Similarly to Class As, larger Class Cs can be difficult to back into tight sites or park in urban areas.
This is especially true with models that have a rear bedroom because they have a longer overhang in the back.
Are Class C RVs Prone to Leaks?
That space-saving cab-over design sometimes means leaks. Unfortunately, water sometimes drips directly into the cab through the seal around the windshield.
Many older Class C RVs are notorious for this. To be fair, though, they’re not the only kinds of RVs that are prone to leaks.
The solution is to ensure that all of the problem areas, including slide openings, are caulked and sealed.
Pro Tip: Ready to invest in a Class C RV? Check out these 5 Best Class C RV Brands in 2021.
Who Are Class C RVs Best For?
A Class C RV is a great option if you’re traveling with just a partner or a small family. With a larger family, you’ll need to make sure your rig is big enough and that you have several slides.
Keep the towing capacity in mind, too. You’re going to need to bring along a second vehicle for day trips and errands.
Is a Class C RV Right for You?
Committing to a Class C is a big decision. Depending on your particular RV lifestyle, it could pay off with memorable experiences for many years to come.
However, if it’s a mismatch, it can be a major expense that you’ll live to regret. Do your homework to find out if a Class C is the best choice for you.
Have you ever checked out a Class C RV? What did you think? Drop a comment below!
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