Tuesday, October 3, 2023


RV expert picks the BEST 5th wheel brands for 2023

One of our readers’ FAVORITE RV vloggers, Josh the RV Nerd, is back with a video detailing his picks for the best 5th wheel brands for 2023. When it comes to RVs, Josh knows what he’s talking about, so it’s always valuable to get an insider’s view on the RV industry.

Josh rightly puts in the disclaimer that there is no single “Best 5th Wheel” for everyone. It is going to depend on how you intend to use it. So, to make this video more useful, he broke it down to his best picks for fifth wheels in these categories:

  • Destination living
  • Couples traveling
  • My family today
  • Full-time family
  • Living on the road
  • The ultimate pipe dream
  • Honorable mentions

Be sure to watch the video for stats on all these RVs and if you are interested in them, click over to Josh’s YouTube channel as he has done full video tours on all the fifth wheels below.

Best 5th wheel for destination living: Alliance RV’s Paradigm 382RK

Josh picked this as the best 5th wheel for destination living because it feels more like a house than a camper. It has a very residential layout with lots of open space.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • A rear kitchen with an enormous amount of counter and food prep space.
  • Tons of windows
  • A fantastic entertainment area
  • One-and-a-half bathrooms
  • 4 slides to maximize space and the open feel
  • Tank heaters
  • Full RV paint job
  • Azdel inside and out
  • Triple AC system
  • 320w factory solar
  • Large 12-volt fridge

What’s the downside?

This is a LARGE RV and you will need a full-sized dually to tow it.

Best 5th wheel for traveling couples: Rockwood 2444WS by Forest River

For this category, Josh wanted something under 30 feet with easy access to the bedrooms and bathrooms, even while traveling. This also has a rear kitchen, which I personally love. It comes in at under 29 feet.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • No slides on the door side let you maximize campsite space.
  • You can use the bedroom, the bathroom, and all areas of the rig even when the slides are closed.
  • Double Azdel walls inside and out.
  • Factory standard 1000w inverter.
  • Outdoor mini-fridge
  • Tank heaters
  • Automatic leveling system
  • True queen-sized bed
  • A HUGE amount of storage
  • XL ceiling vent fans

Best 5th wheel for traveling families: Eagle HT 29.5HDS by Jayco RV

For this category, Josh wanted a rig that provided some privacy for family members but also functioned well as a group gathering space on the road.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • Huge outdoor kitchen.
  • Huge amounts of easily accessible storage.
  • Automatic leveling system.
  • Unmatched warranty: 2 plus 3 year with allowances for full-time RVing
  • Whisper A/C system
  • TPMS system
  • 3000 lb. towing hitch.

The downside?

While the manufacturer hints this can be towed by a 1/2-ton truck, Josh rightly calls them out on this bit of BS. A 3/4-ton truck or higher makes a far safer choice.

Best full-time family 5th wheel: North Point 377RLBH by Jayco RV

For this category, Josh wanted to not only see increased sleeping space, but also comfortable increased living space.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • Huge outdoor kitchen
  • Big kitchen island
  • Amazing entertainment area
  • Fireplace
  • Uniroyal H tires
  • 30 BTU air system
  • Auto-leveling system
  • 4 levels of solar packages available
  • 3000 lb. towing hitch
  • Four sleeping zones
  • XL kitchen and bath fans
  • XL drop frame basement
  • Great upper deck headroom

The downside?

Again, you will need a 1-ton truck, and a dually would not be a bad idea.

Best full-timing 5th wheel: Cougar 290RLS by Keystone RV

For full-timing, you need space but also need travel access to things like the bedroom, bathroom, and fridge. A washer and dryer become more of a priority, too.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • A washer and dryer (of course)
  • Large kitchen island
  • True queen-sized bed
  • Opposing wall slides open up a huge living space
  • Automatic leveling system
  • Dual power awnings
  • Advanced weather package
  • Factory solar
  • On-demand water heater
  • Rear towing hitch

The downside?

None of the floor plans offer a north/south bed.

The ultimate pipe dream 5th wheel: Brinkley RV Model G 3500

This is Josh’s pick if money were no object and if he did not have to worry about towing it. He says this huge toy hauler is the most beautiful, well-made, over-the-top, 5th wheel on the market. You are going to want to see this one to believe it.

Some of the highlights of this rig include:

  • Amazing amount of outside storage
  • The best toy hauler kitchen ever
  • 800w factory solar
  • 3000w inverter
  • 200ah lithium batteries
  • Heated garage floor
  • Air compressor

Josh’s Honorable Mention pick for best 5th wheel brands

  • Keystone Cougar MLE: This one almost made Josh’s pick for best couples traveler, and you could make the case for it taking the lead depending on your RV style.

Josh stresses these picks are just his opinion, although this man examines TONS of RVs. What are your thoughts? Do you have other favorite 5th wheel brands? Please drop your thoughts in the comments below.


Cheri Sicard
Cheri Sicardhttps://cannademy.com/
Cheri Sicard is the author 8 published books on topics as diverse as US Citizenship to Cannabis Cooking. Cheri grew up in a circus family and has been RVing on and off her entire life.


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2 months ago

Only thing I disagree with is the choice for “Best 5th wheel for traveling families”. This should be given to the Grand Design 28BH over the Jayco. As Josh calls it “Road Mode” you would need to shimmy into the main living area. In the Grand Design it feels like a no slide camper. A little less room but everything is fully accessible except for the bunk area and freezer which is fine when stopping for a break or meal.

2 months ago

Yeah, about that. I thought Josh was intelligent til reading these listings.

Tom Coder
2 months ago

I don’t consider any of these to be good value (I haven’t looked at an Alliance, so they get a pass from this assessment–for now). These brands are low quality and don’t stand behind their products. For most RV purchasers, it’s all about the monthly payment (which banks love about the RV market), and they fail to recognize that low quality and a rig that doesn’t hold its value means that RV loan will be upside down before it’s paid off. The thinking RV purchaser looks deeper into how the rig is built and the quality of materials/parts used. The RV industry is very good at glitzy, luxurious looks and features, but poor when it comes to quality, durability, and dependability. It’s sad.

2 months ago
Reply to  Tom Coder

Once you sign the papers you’re upside down just like your tow vehicle. It’s like a dog trying to catch it’s tail.

1 month ago
Reply to  Tom Coder

Okay, so what’s your recommendations? Please email me at curtisf62 (at) gmail.com.

Joe Goomba
2 months ago

How do we know that this Josh “knows what he’s talking about”? Everyone’s an “expert” nowadays.

Diane McGovern
2 months ago
Reply to  Joe Goomba

Hi, Joe. Josh has been in the RV business since 2009, starting with his family’s business. His YouTube channel has almost 7,000 videos, with 239,000 subscribers and more than 102 million views. I think he has as much experience as, if not more than, any RV reviewer out there. Actually, probably way more than anyone else, although he does admit that he doesn’t know everything about RVs. Not to mention, he’s just a cool (and very funny) guy. Have a great day. 😀 –Diane at RVtravel.com

Bill Byerly
2 months ago
Reply to  Diane McGovern


Diane McGovern
2 months ago
Reply to  Bill Byerly

👍 Backatcha, Bill. Have a good night.🤗 –Diane

2 months ago
Reply to  Joe Goomba

It’s a perspective of some one that has been in the business for sometime that makes one knowledgeable and share that knowledge. Reach out to Josh and ask him about your concerns or what you have found that seems inconsistent.

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