Are the Reports About Thor Motorhome's Quality True?
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Thor Motor Coach advertises itself as being the number-one motorhome brand in North America. But are the reports about its motorhome problems true? To put it bluntly, the RVs that Thor Motor Coach produces have lukewarm reviews from their owners.
Of course, one of the best ways to learn about the quality of any RV model is to rent and try it before you buy. Rent a Thor motorhome on Go RV Rentals to test it before you commit to a purchase. Our rental platform facilitates an apples-to-apples comparison, so you can secure the best deal.
In this post, we’ve scoured the internet and compiled everything you need to know about Thor Motor Coach quality, reviews, issues, recalls, warranty, customer support, and much more. Read on so you can make a more informed choice.
Who is Thor Motor Coach?
Based in Elkhart, Indiana, Thor Motor Coach was established in 2010 after a strategic merger between Damon Motor Coach and Four Winds International. The brand produces 1 out of every 4 motorhomes sold each year in North America. In addition, their driveable RVs come in over 120 floor plans uniquely designed for different RVing lifestyles.
They offer Class A, B, B+, C, and Super C motorhomes. Further, their lineup includes models in all different forms, such as gas-powered, diesel pushers, Mercedes Sprinter, Ford Transit, and 4×4 to all-wheel drive. For sure, one of their most unique offerings is their Class A and C toy haulers, known as the Thor Outlaw model.
Some of their most popular Thor Motor Coach models are:
- Thor Motor Coach Class A models – Hurricane, Thor Axis, Windsport, and Tuscany.
- Thor Motor Coach Class B models – Sequence, Tellaro, and Sanctuary.
- Thor Motor Coach Class B+ models – Gemini AWD and Compass AWD.
- Thor Motor Coach Class C models – Four Winds, Chateau, Echelon, and Quantum LC.
- Thor Motor Coach Super C models – Omni, Magnitude, and Inception.
Who Owns Thor Motor Coach?
Thor Industries is the parent company of Thor Motor Coach. Interestingly, Thor Industries is famous for buying out competitors, which has made it the world’s largest manufacturer of recreational vehicles. Alongside Thor Motor Coach, this RV empire also owns 15 other leading North American RV makers.
These subsidiaries include Airstream, Jayco, Heartland RV, Dutchmen, Entegra coach, CrossRoads, Cruiser RV, and KZ. Notably, it also owns 16 European caravan manufacturers. In this post, we will only be discussing motorhomes specifically produced under the Thor Motor Coach logo, and not a generalization of the entire parent company, Thor Industries.
Are Thor Motorhomes Any Good?
When compared with the top competition, Thor budget RVs fall short when it comes to quality and reliability. Many of their customer reviews don’t paint them in a good light. Still, it’s worth noting that their motorhomes lineup ranges from entry-level to premium. Customers who go for their high-end models seem to have better things to say about the brand. On the other hand, those who buy their low-priced RVs seem to be unimpressed by many things.
Thor Motor Coach Reviews
The best way to get a glimpse into what RV consumers feel about Thor branded RVs is to look at how they rank it compared to other top brands. According to a 2016 study by RVT.com regarding the overall rankings of RV manufacturers, Thor Motor Coach got 3.15 out of 5 stars from consumers. It took the 10th spot out of 10 in the following 4 categories: interior design, livability rating, RV quality, and overall score.
In an updated 2022 study by RVT.com, Thor Motor Coach didn’t manage to get a spot in the top 10. Yet, its competitors, Winnebago, Jayco, and Coachmen, rank higher and get better scores in all categories. Notably, RVT.com gets its data from RVInsider.com. When you look at the current Thor Motor Coach RV Ratings on the RV Insider site, they have an overall score of 3.5 out of 5 stars from 1,127 reviews. That’s not good. And as you can see below their overall quality and factory warranty ratings are abysmal.
In 2023 Thor Motor Coach ratings per category are as follows (ranked by actual owners):
- Overall Quality – 2.9 out of 5 stars
- Liveability – 3.8 out of 5 stars
- Floor Plan – 4.1 out of 5 stars
- Driving – 3.9 out of 5 stars
- Factory Warranty – 2.6 out of 5 stars
In contrast, here’s how other motorhome brands are ranked by consumers in 2023:
- Winnebago – 4.2/5 stars from 1,104 reviews
- Coachmen – 3.9/5 stars from 757 reviews
- Jayco – 3.7/5 stars from 1,166 reviews
- Tiffin – 4.4/5 from 534 reviews
- Newmar – 4.3/5 stars from 355 reviews
- Forest River – 3.6/5 stars from 2,790 reviews
- Entegra Coach – 4.1/5 from 145 reviews
If you were wondering which is better Thor or Winnebago, you can see that Winnebago manages an impressive 4.2/5 stars, compared to Thor’s 3.5/5. Moreover, Thor branded RVs have the lowest rating among the top motorhome brands. You can find more Thor motorhome opinions at this irv2.com thread and at this bbb.org page. These other sources just reinforce when it comes to Thor Motorhomes—buyer beware!
Common Thor Motorhome Issues and Complaints
Wondering why Thor Motor Coach isn’t highly rated by customers? Here are the top Thor Motor Coach issues reported by owners.
Thor Motorhome Problems with Slide Outs
One of the most frustrating things that Thor motorhome owners are constantly pointing out is the slide outs. According to reviews, the slides seem to have all sorts of issues, from jamming, misalignment to leaks when driving on a rainy day. These type of issues can make for a frustrating roadtrip and just might cut your vacation short.
Thor Motor Coach Issues with Plumbing
A good number of Thor motorhome owners seem to be unsatisfied with the water system of their rigs. The plumbing seems to have been done incorrectly or has missing parts, and in some cases has to be redone completely. It’s amazing that they have been building these things for years and still have basic plumbing problems.
Poor Quality Flooring
Owners seem to encounter all sorts of floor problems in Thor motorhomes. The troubles range from bumpy sections, peeling, soft spots to bubbles. Sadly, the manufacturer rarely offers solutions for floor issues. These are things that if they had any good quality control processes would never ship from the factory.
One more serious issue Thor branded RVs suffer from is water intrusion. Buyers have reported water leaking through the antenna, roof vents, AC, skylights, as well as roof edge seams. Clearly, this is concerning, as leaks are responsible for the most expensive RV damage and may cause rot and mold if not remedied.
Thor Motorhome Problems with Suspension
Other recurring Thor Motor Coach complaints are about how their budget RVs ride. Their rigs seem to offer a rough ride, even when new. Owners mainly attribute this to low-grade shock absorbers. RVs are heavy vehicles. It’s a shame they don’t spend a few extra buck on a beefed up suspension system.
Another of the most frequent Thor Motor Coach problems concerns the electric system. Issues that come up include failing lights, incorrect wiring, dead batteries, a bad converter, appliances not working, and AC/heating not running.
Rear Seats Pose a Safety Hazard
A good number of customers have complained about their motorhome seats. When the vehicle is being driven, the seats seem to shake erratically when the vehicle rides over any slight bump on the road. How uncomfortable would that be on a long trip?
Thor Motor Coach Recalls
With so many issues plaguing Thor Motor Coach RVs, it’s no surprise that they have several recalls every few years. In 2021, they recalled the models Aria, Challenger, Miramar, Outlaw, Palazzo, Tuscany, and Venetian. Shockingly, these RV’s windows had poor adhesive, causing the windows to fall out or pop loose.
In 2022, Thor Motor Coach recalled 16 models because their quick disconnect fittings in the LP gas system could be cracked. That could cause a gas leak and create a fire hazard. The most recent recall affects its 2023 Rize and Scope camper vans. Alarmingly, their retractable awning may open unintentionally during transit and become a road hazard.
Thor Motor Coach Warranty
Thor Motor Coach offers a standard 1-year limited warranty for Class A and C motorhomes. Remarkably, if you buy their Class B, you’ll get a 2-year limited warranty. The company says it’s committed to giving buyers longer repair coverage when they need it.
But having a warranty and being able to use it are two different things. So, how do RV owners view the Thor motorhome warranty? Unfortunately, RVers who own their rigs rank their factory warranty 2.6 out of 5 stars on RV insider. This is Thor’s worst score in all categories.
In fact, a good number of buyers claim Thor doesn’t honor their warranty. Complaints range from outright claims denial for covered items, repairs delaying for months, to ineffective or incomplete repairs.
Thor Motor Coach Customer Service
There are mixed reviews regarding Thor RV support. Some of their customers say the company’s representatives have always answered their calls whenever they needed help. Further, some support staff help owners troubleshoot issues or refer them to dealerships where they can find quick assistance.
Unfortunately, not all owners have great experiences. Some say their calls go unanswered or very little help is offered. Here are the Thor Motor Coach phone numbers if you need help.
- Customer Service – (877) 855-2867
- Dealer Customer Care – (877) 500-1020
- General Sales Inquiries – (800) 860-5658
Best Things About Thor Motor Coach
Despite its shortcomings, there are some areas that Thor Motor Coach excels in. No wonder it’s the number one selling motorhome brand in North America.
One of its successes lies in its wide variety of floor plans. Impressively, they have over 120 motorhome layouts to pick from, ensuring every camper finds a unit that matches their preferences. No other manufacturer comes close to this number. In fact, customers have given them an excellent score of 4.1 out of 5 in this department.
Another reason customers love Thor motorhomes is that they are budget-friendly. Their products are reasonable in price considering the number of modern features you get. Further, many buyers are impressed by the exterior looks and paint of Thor coaches.
In addition, their power trains seem to be well-liked, as many buyers have praised their thrust and reliability. One more thing to love about their RVs is that they are relatively easy to drive, even for those new to the lifestyle.
What Year Did Thor Motor Coach Problems Begin?
While there have always been issues with Thor motorhomes, the complaints began to rise significantly after 2020. Many consumers point out that Thor seems to have dropped its quality control during the COVID-19 pandemic. Recall, this was a period of time when plant closures, staff shortages and supply chain issues were the norm for many vehicle manufacturers. Further, they also seem to have adopted a mass production approach around that time. Certainly, those who bought their RV post 2020 seem to be the unhappiest.
Missing parts (including mattresses), incomplete plumbing, electrical systems not hooked up, damaged items, inferior cabinetry, and malfunctioning slides and doors are just a few of the issues. Also, the quality of the materials used to assemble their units is lacking. Definitely, such glaring defects are a clear indicator there was zero or little quality control. Further, it raises questions about the workmanship.
With so many flaws, it isn’t a surprise that there have been several Thor motor coach lawsuits in the last few years. Several customers have accused them of selling a lemon. Notably, the dip in quality is not just a Thor problem, as almost the entire RV industry has seen a rise in complaints in recent years.
Our Final Take on Thor Motor Coach Quality
Are Thor motorhomes high quality? After going through consumer reviews on various forums, we can say that the reports about their motorhomes are quite true. There are serious quality issues that the company has failed to address conclusively. But are Thor motorhomes junk? While some of their RVs have serious problems, not all of them are of poor quality. Their luxury Class A models are highly rated by consumers.
Of course, no manufacturer can beat the price and floor plans Thor offers. So, if you insist on getting one of their entry-level RVs, be ready to make warranty claims or to do the fixes at your expense. For those who want a dependable RV to use year-round, only consider their premium models as they are built to a higher standard.
Book an RV Rental to Test the Quality of any RV Model Before You Buy
Purchasing an RV is a huge financial commitment, and you wouldn’t want to get the decision wrong. The best way to learn about the quality of any RV you’re considering is to rent and test that model.
Driving and living in the rental for a week or more will give you a better feel of its pros, cons, and quality. You’ll also get to know whether it has a layout that works for you, has the features you need, has enough space, is easy to drive, and much more.
Our site, Go RV Rentals, gives prospective RV owners a chance to try before they buy. We help you discover, compare RV rental daily rates, and rent the best RVs available in the market, including the latest models.