Thursday, September 16, 2021
Thursday, September 16, 2021

RV Review: Coach House Platinum 220

By Tony Barthel
Some people bemoan the fact that the biggest companies in the RV industry produce so many varied brands and labels that it’s tough to tell what’s what. I agree. One of the things I enjoy about sharing RV reviews with you is that we go looking for small, unusual and specialty manufacturers. 

Some of you are great co-conspirators in this, including Benjamin Vega, who suggested that I take a look at Coach House RV in Nokomis, Florida. 

Coach House is a family operation that has been building Class C RVs since 1985. The operation started with Ruben Gerzeny along with his sons David and Steven. The family tradition continues to this day with David’s son, Zachary, running the production facility. 

Coach House story

I had remarked in my recent review of the Relic travel trailer how unusual it was that those trailers are a single fiberglass capsule that then sits on a frame. Coach House uses the same idea but on a much larger scale. Their Class C motorhomes are constructed using a large one-piece fiberglass shell that the company has patented. Many manufacturers claim that their bodies are fine with seams in them. However, fewer joints leaves fewer places where something can go wrong. And leaks are usually what can go wrong. 

Factory direct

Like Lazy Daze, Relic, Oliver and a few other smaller manufacturers, Coach House RVs are sold directly from the factory only. Like Lazy Daze, a tour of the showroom also includes a tour of the factory. Unfortunately, that’s been modified temporarily due to COVID. 

Another nice thing about buying at the factory is the walk-through you get. It’s done by people who are right there at the factory and can answer your questions. And if they can’t, they can turn to the folks who designed the coach. Or they can asks the folks on the line building them and get answers there. 

Coach House essentially sells four lines of RVs. These include three that are Class C models using the fiberglass shell and a fourth that is a Class B using a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter shell. 

If you choose one of those Class C models, there are three choices for chassis. The Platinum sits on the Ford E-Series platform, the Platinum II sits on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter cutaway platform, and the Platinum III uses the Ford Transit cutaway platform. 

Platinum

One of the many benefits of a Class C is that you get the significant resources of a vehicle manufacturer making your chassis. This holds true with the Platinum chassis. That means that the Mercedes or Ford chassis inherits all the engineering and safety features of the respective chassis. In the case of the Platinum, that means Ford’s collision avoidance, braking, Sync and so many other tech features. 

As for the coach body itself, Coach House features things like a 1,200-watt pure sine wave inverter to power some of the 120vac household outlets in the coach. In addition, there are two AGM batteries on a drawer that pulls out. Lights and features are controlled with the Firefly multiplex system. For additional power, there’s an Onan 4000 generator aboard. 

The options list includes things like automatic leveling, a legless power awning, lithium batteries, a 190-watt solar panel on the roof or two 190-watt panels, a king bed and full body paint. 

Floor plan of the Coach House Platinum

The Platinum is available in one floor plan and the size of this coach would be a great alternative to a Class B. While this is wider, of course, the 23’ 2” overall length will easily fit into a parking space. There’s also a standard receiver hitch. The Ford Godzilla V8 should be able to wrangle whatever trailer you need to haul within the specified limits of the hitch and chassis. 

As you step inside, there’s a loveseat across from the entry that seats two and has power adjustment to fold completely flat. Coach House says this is a sleeping area. However, you’d probably have to be a shorter individual, like a child, to take advantage of it. Also, there’s a TV above the cab/cockpit area that is on a swivel arm. But it’s still in an odd position to be fully enjoyed by the occupants of this seat. On the other hand, there is a Blu-ray player included, so you can watch the latest movies. Well, the latest movies on disc. 

Lastly, there’s a table on a pole that you can put in front of the seat. However, I think a Lagun table would have been super awesome. 

Across from the loveseat is the galley consisting of a single-bowl stainless steel sink and a two-burner stovetop. I think whoever’s in charge of meal prep is going to like the large pull-out pantry next to the kitchen. It has lots and lots of space for cans and jars.

On the road side opposite the prep area is a two-way RV refrigerator and, above that, a convection microwave. 

The bathroom and bedroom of the Coach House

Next on our tour is the bathroom, which is a split bath. The shower itself is on the camp side of the coach and the toilet and sink on the road side. The door for the shower can be opened 90° to block off the main living area of the coach if you choose. 

The door is held open by a fairly industrial door prop, which reminds me of being in school. So many RV companies have gone to magnetic retainers, but this one does have the advantage of being pretty beefy. 

Lastly, the bedroom in this model features two twin beds but there is a platform and cushions to convert this to a king-sized bed if someone wishes. 

While counter space both in the bathroom and in the kitchen is limited, both can be made better with the flip-up counter extensions. 

What’s not to like?

There are a few things I noticed in these that I thought could easily be remedied. One of those is the distinct lack of USB charging ports, although I suppose you could just plug in a charging brick. But that also means you’d have to run either the generator or the inverter. 

I also was surprised to watch Robert Morales’ video from last year’s Tampa RV Show where he did a walk-through of a few Coach House models and they’re still using those spring-loaded catches for the doors. Do they not have magnets in Florida or something? Also, those odd rubber stoppers to keep the bathroom door open seemed unusual. Again – magnets, folks, magnets. 

What’s to love

The “don’t like” things are minor compared to the “do like” things in this RV, starting with what the company has staked their reputation on: the single-piece fiberglass shell for the camper itself. I can’t stress enough how great it is to not have multiple panels that rattle loose over time. 

I have to say I’m more familiar with Lazy Daze campers than with these. But both stake their reputation on the build of their camper portions of their rigs and, here in California, vintage Lazy Daze campers are quite coveted. I would imagine that’s the case on the East Coast with Coach House models. 

Looking at the used RV market, there are 10- and 15-year-old Coach House RVs that still look factory-fresh selling for more than some newer Class Cs. A noteworthy number of them are selling for over $100,000, so I think the company’s build-quality reputation is deserved. 

One bit of frustration – I did get the MSRP from Robert’s videos. I called multiple times and didn’t get a call or email back from the company. I’m hoping they are better at responding to customers than they are at responding to media inquiries.

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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Robert Torres
1 month ago

I’ve owned a 2007 CH 232 Platinum for 4 years, identical to the 220 but with 2 slide outs.
The only thing I have replaced has been the tires. Took a 30 days trip to Maine with no problems. Me and my wife love it

David Barnes
3 months ago

Magnets don’t work on fiberglass. Why would you resort to placing ferrous metal on the outside of a coach. The issue of the latch seems to be a bit over the top looking for a complaint. If you want to find an issue mention the COST. But since each CH is built somewhat to buyer’s specs you can expect high cost. They don’t have mass production or models in large quantities at dealers. I think more people would love to own a Coach house if they could simply afford it. For myself after experiencing all sorts of camping from tents to Motor home and currently owning a large truck camper (16yrs), the transition to the 220 seems to solve the shortfalls we have without giving up what we love about it. No more crawling to get out of bed and you don’t have to build it or unfold it either!
RV experience teaches a LOT.

David Barnes
3 months ago

We just ordered a 2022 model of the CH 220TB in Feb.
Our reason for this is the overall build quality and functionality.
Our intent is to tour and travel versus staying in it long term or live in it permanently.
When you look at maximum length issues in many parks, availability of sites and so on it looks like a valid choice. In essence many reasons why people chose class B units for an RV is accomplished by the CH without the extreme expense of a “B” with any of the same features. Can you camp under the radar? No, but I think you will find that difficult to do even with a true “B” and so many places are banning the ability to free camp in lots.
Comments about tank sizes are not realistic if you expect to drive something under 25′.
The CH actually has better or equivalent tank sizes for most it’s competition.
Class A or full C is not competition for the 220. They are much bigger and don’t fit the niche .
The CH is not necessarily perfect, but no RV is going to match dreams.

Mitzi Agnew Giles and Ed Giles
7 months ago

We looked at a Platinum at the Fort Myers FL RV show the first year or two it was out. For many reasons it was not our final choice, BUT we both agreed that it had the BEST utilization of space we had ever seen in an RV. No wasted space whatsoever and very harmonious.

Richard
7 months ago

You did not mention something about Coach House that is unique in the small RV world: all their E450 models (they don’t use the E350) have engine-assist hot water heaters. With regards to some of their archaic features, it seems that their philosophy, like Lazy Daze, is to introduce changes slowly and with much deliberation, in order to maintain reliability. That said, there are some-head-scratching things that make you wonder why they’re not-upgraded at this price point. Remember, this is not a mass-market MSRP where you will routinely (in normal times) get 25-35 percent discounts.

Neal Davis
7 months ago

Awesome build quality, just wish they offered a smallish (~35 feet) class A. Thank you for the review!

Roger Spalding
7 months ago

Coach House V8 Ford chassis Class C motorhomes have always intrigued me. They appear to be well built with a lot of thought put into them; perfect couples coaches. This makes it all the more confusing that their $100K+ rigs are only 80% complete. AGM batteries? For $100K, a customer should not have to worry about exceeding 50% discharge. Three 100A/12V lithiums should be standard. A 1,200 watt inverter? Another half measure, no less than 2,000, and 3,000 is more like it. A 12V fridge should, at least, be an option. The two solar panel option should be standard as well. Tanks capacities are inadequate, too. There are a lot of similarities to Airstreams; both are park queens that cannot exist more than a day (or two max) without hookups. Both CH and Airstreams are soft on the eyes. But 80% complete won’t get me to fly to Florida and get out my wallet.

Rick
7 months ago
Reply to  Roger Spalding

Agreed. We were looking to downsize from our 40ft and Coach House was on our top of the list. After much thought and research we went with Triple E Leisure Travel Vans Unity TB. Maybe not one piece construction but it had what we wanted and liked the design and layout. Build quality is at least on par with Air Stream and Coach house I think.

HDDRvr
7 months ago
Reply to  Rick

We have a 2013 LTV Unity TB bought new in 2013. You will absolutely love this coach. In the 7 1/2 years we’ve owned it, we’ve only had two minor issues. Can’t say enough about this rig.

Roger Spalding
7 months ago
Reply to  HDDRvr

You two read my mind. The LTV Wonder is at the top of my list though. Ford chassis. 6 cylinder turbo diesel (if it’s still being manufactured) or 6 cylinder twin turbo. The Murphy bed, rear twin/king bed or the new rear lounge (awesome!) are all winners in my book. Plus, all wheel drive.

Tommy Molnar
7 months ago
Reply to  Roger Spalding

Good points all . . .

ESprings
7 months ago
Reply to  Roger Spalding

I was suprised to see a review of a Coach House 220TB. I ordered one at the 2019 Hershey show and took delivery in May of 2020. My coach was the 34th one of that model built, and Coach House only builds around 100 coaches per year. I like the fact they do not charge everyone for lithium and solar if you do not want or need it. I chose to get two 190 watt panels and because the battery tray is only designed for three batteries I went with three 12 volt 125ah AGM batteries. I boondock about half the time and power is never a problem for me. I need to dump tanks by day four and refill the fresh water tank. The standard inverter is undersized if you need to run the microwave, but I almost never use it. This was my second Coach House and I had a 2000 watt inverter with the microwave wired to use with the inverter, so it’s available if needed. The standard refrigerator is an absorption three way Dometic model. I went with a 12 volt, 120 volt compressor fridge in our 220.

Bud
1 month ago
Reply to  ESprings

I have a Coach House 2011 271XL FD platinum model that I bought used. It had 56k miles on it and it looked like New when I went to see it. The previous owner had it garage kept at his house. He also had liquid springs suspension added to it in Indiana at the factory.
Since I’ve had it, I didn’t like the a/c units they put on most RVs, the Dometic was noisy and it died in Nov. 2019, so I installed a Houghton 15k hp unit and the decibel level of the a/c sound is 10-13 dbl lower, now you can hear yourself think. I made some other minor changes and being 27’ long is still an easy to drive rv. Mine didn’t have heated tanks, so I added that as we like to travel in the colder months too.
I agree with the people that said the price is high, that’s why I went with a used unit. But the Quality you can’t beat. It has plenty of storage cabinets inside, but it could use more on the outside.

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