Friday, January 21, 2022

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RV Review: 2022 Entegra Coach Odyssey 26M Class C – a nice balance

A lot of people like Class C motorhomes and I haven’t been looking at these as much as I should of late. There are a few reasons for this, including my rant at the end of this article. But today let’s take a look at the Entegra Coach Odyssey 26M. 

The reason I chose this one is that Matt Foxcroft from Matt’s RV Reviews did a walk-through of it. Other than that, there’s little information on this rig.

Loving on Godzilla

If you’re buying a Class C motorhome, you have a few choices in the chassis on which it’s based. But the three most common choices are the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter cutaway, the Ford Transit cutaway and the vintage Ford E-Series (used to be called Econoline) cutaway. 

The E-Series from Ford is the only one that offers a big, honking American V8 in the form of the newer Ford “Godzilla” 7.3 liter gasoline V8. What I like about this engine is that it’s relatively simple with no turbos. It’s a pushrod engine design that basically takes a big engine and uses that to make the power. At one point some automotive type said “there’s no substitute for cubic inches” and that’s still true. Sorta. 

While turbocharging gasoline and diesel engines makes sense, when you’re shoving a giant box through the air that’s heavy as heck, a simple pushrod gasoline V8 is not a bad choice. Turbos are great when your load varies such as a pickup that sometimes runs loaded, sometimes not, but cubic inches are just fine when you’re always running under load such as in a motorhome.

Plus you can run this beast on regular (as opposed to premium) fuel, even a first-semester auto shop student can work on the thing, and it’s probably not likely to break in the first place. This engine exists because Ford sees the writing on the wall regarding diesel engines and legislative pressures to minimize pollutants from them. For those who are already getting mad, don’t blame me. And I know the engines aren’t at fault – it’s regulatory nonsense. 

But unless you’re going to be putting a lot of miles on an RV or keeping it a very long time, a gasoline engine may make more financial sense. This one, with 468 ft.-lb. of torque, certainly addresses the typical advantage of a diesel engine in the torque department. 

What about the motorhome?

The cabin of the motorhome itself, the back part built by Entegra, is a nice space. 

This floor plan features a Murphy bed at the back. That means there’s a couch when the bed is up and a 60” X 70” bed at night. That couch sports drawers underneath it. The Murphy bed itself has a split in the mattress that’s high enough on the bed that the pillows are likely going to be on top of it, so it should be reasonably comfortable. 

One thing, though. The Murphy bed mechanism is power-operated. Honestly, this would be less trouble if it were simply a manual bed with struts, as others have done. I’m a firm believer in simpler being better. 

This model also sports an electric fireplace in the back bedroom. That back bedroom/living space can also be an office or just a nice place to go. That couch isn’t going to win any awards for comfort, but it’s no worse than the couches in a lot of RVs. 

The bathroom occupies the entire rear of the coach. That means a nice 30” X 36” shower and a decent amount of counter space there, as well. You’ll notice that the linen closet does make the space around the toilet tight. But I think more cabinet space is more better. Yes, yes, I know that’s a terrible sentence. 

Up front in the kitchen, the standard seating arrangement is a U-shaped dinette with a slick swiveling table on top. That means you can have lots of space for two diners or a little less space for more. The captains chairs in the cab of the truck also swivel around, making for a good conversation space. Plus, those two chairs are in the optimal position for watching the TV up front, if that’s a priority. 

The cab-over bunk offers support for up to 750 pounds of people or stuff – which is pretty sturdy. There’s an automotive windshield at the front, as well, with a power shade. That power shade can be closed from inside the bunk or standing on the edge – a nice touch. 

Entegra Coach

A few things I really like about how this is put together all involve the exterior shell of the camper portion of this rig. Entegra uses a fiberglass shell on the coach, which isn’t unusual. But the seams at the front are not right on the edges. Although the company claims it’s a “seamless” front cap, this is not true. But the placement of the seams do reduce the likelihood of a void. 

Also, the entire roof is a dimpled fiberglass instead of being rubber or PVC. Hooray! I think this is a superior way to build the roof of any RV. 

Entegra Coach follows parent company Jayco’s lead by employing a two-year end-to-end warranty plus a three-year structural warranty. This company used to be independent, but Thor bought the whole Jayco family a while back, in case you missed the news. 

Tony’s rant

I’ve written this before. I can’t understand being a manufacturer of any product over $20 and not having a huge photo library of that product as well as a video series on it. If I were to actually buy a Class C motorhome, or anything over $100, I would expect that the manufacturer would have some video and an extensive image library of the product. 

Heck, if you go shop for $100 microphones or cameras or pressure cookers, there are videos from the manufacturer and from others as well. Entegra’s website does have a video library – but not one about this specific RV, and not much about their Class C line at all. 

Honestly, how do you spend time designing, engineering, planning and building something like this and not care enough about your customers to do an extensive video walk-through and photo library? I realize it’s customary in the RV space and that’s why guys like Matt Foxcroft and Josh Winters have huge followings on YouTube – because RV manufacturers have absolutely failed their customers at providing information. 

A case in point is Entegra’s E-Z Drive. If it’s such a great system, where is the information on their website about it? 

If you’re considering buying one of these, how do you make an informed decision? I know some of these articles get well over 100,000 page views. So I do my best to research and use my experience to share things with you that may make a difference in your experience down the road. 

I am also fortunate that I have some industry folks’ contact information available to me. I focus on those rigs more than the ones for which I have no information. That’s because I would rather share what I know to help you. 

However, their website does have photos of their swishy swirl graphics, so there is that. Now see how good I’ve been about not mentioning that recently? 

Before you write a response to this, I’ll show you how you can find the information on these features and this motorhome, but you’ll just have to wait until tomorrow’s review.

In summary

Entegra has a good reputation within the RV space, and there’s a lot to like about this coach in general. I think this layout, in particular, balances interior space and features well within a smaller outside diameter. I’m also a big fan of Ford’s Godzilla engine. While this chassis doesn’t quite match the newer Ford Transit for interior design, it more than makes up for that by just being in beast mode all the time regarding power and build. 

Right now there is literally no incentive for Thor or Entegra to step up their marketing game. But I don’t believe that the unlimited supply of customers is going to be a long-term situation. I wonder if those companies started providing more information and establishing better reputations with their customers now, if that might spell more sales when things are different in the future. 

Does this matter to you, or am I just nuts? Well, I know I am, but what’s your take on RV companies and their lack of information to the consumer? 

*****

I would love to read your comments and suggestions over on our new forums, where you can weigh in and start or join a discussion about all things RV. Here’s a link to this topic in the RV Reviews Forum.

Tony comes to RVTravel having worked at an RV dealership and been a life long RV enthusiast. He also has written the syndicated Curbside column about cars. You can find his writing here and at StressLessCamping where he also has a podcast about the RV life with his wife. 

These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.

Got an RV we need to look at? Contact us today and let us know in the form below – thank you!

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REVIEW OVERVIEW

Fiberglass roof
Swiveling dinette table
Power Murphy bed
Consumer-facing information

SUMMARY

Entegra's Odyssey line offers a lot of features that can make a positive difference to RVers who want a Class C on the beefy Ford E-Series chassis but the company could do a much better job of providing information to consumers, a challenge much of the RV industry faces.

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Steve
1 month ago

I’d rather have the similar floor plan in the slightly smaller, but better-quality Winnebago View.

Full-length, power kitchen slides are just asking for expensive, long-term maintenance and repair problems, in my opinion. And is that Murphy bed 80″ long? If not, it’s an RV I wouldn’t even consider buying.

Charles Allen
1 month ago

Hi Tony. Just finished watching the video on the Entegra Odyssey 26M and am still laughing about the look on the saleslady’s face when she opens the microwave door and the oven begins to rock back and forth. They realize that the microwave is not attached to the wall. It is apparent that the build quality of this unit is not up to consumer standards by any measure. And, it’s only 139,000.00… I’m still laughing !!

David F.
1 month ago

Good info, something like this has lately begun to interest my bride. I agree on the roof concept, and appreciate your thoughts on gas vs diesel and the ‘feel good’ legislation that is choking our power plants.

chuck
1 month ago

You lost me at “regulatory nonsense”. Embarrassing yourself.