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#1 hgrees

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Posted 18 September 2007 - 07:31 PM

I'm very seriously looking at changing our caravan to a Heritage twin axle in the next few months.
I'm trying to get as much info as possible from people who own them.
Basically does the quality of build and the fixtures and fittings really justify the price premium of other vans?
The place where I have my caravan serviced says that the quality does not meet the price and basically said that there is no difference between a Fleetwood and my current Bailey.
I really like the layouts that Fleetwood offer and would like any advice anyone has to help us with our decision.

Many thanks

#2 Martin63

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Posted 19 September 2007 - 01:12 PM

Hi hgrees

I don't want to upset the many happy Adria/Fleetwod owners who frequent the forum, but I was talking to my local Dealer on this subject last Saturday, whilst looking at the Series 6 Bailey Senator Wyoming for about the 30th time! :rolleyes:

His Dealership currently has new 'vans from Adria/Fleetwood, Bailey, Explorer Group and Coachman. We were talking about spare parts and customer service in general, when things go wrong................and we all know that from time to time they do!

Hes stated that Bailey and Coachman were great companies to deal with and were never any problem, with regards to warranty claims, spare parts etc and they were always a pleasure to deal with. He also commented that after a slow start, Explorer Group were trying hard to meet the top two makers in terms of just about everything, in his opinion.

When it came to me asking about Fleetwood, he shivered and laughed out loud. He said that he is having difficulty shifting new stock that dates back to 2006 and that the Heritage was poor value for money. His comment was, 'Why buy a Fleetwood when you can buy a Bailey and have plenty of change?'

He is on the verge of dropping his Adria/Fleetwood franchise, as in his words: 'I am sick to death of making excuses for poor workmanship, poor parts availability and not being listened too!'

I don't wish to be provogative in anyway - I'm merely relaying what I was told by someone in the trade - and incidently.......no, I didn't order my new Wyoming from him, so he had nothing to gain by imparting this little nugget!! :lol:

Martin

#3 mavisangelica

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Posted 20 September 2007 - 03:53 PM

We have a 2003 Heritage 640 EB. This has the front seating area, behind this is the side dinette which converts to a 3/4 size bed. Behind this is the kitchen and behind this is the end bathroom. For 3 of us we are spoiled for space and storage as cupboards line the space opposite the side dinette where the TV stands.

Most of all though we love the ginormous fridge and separate freezer.

We bought it second hand a year and a half ago from a small dealer. We wouldn't have bought it if we had to buy it new as I don't think it worth 20K.

We are looking to change it in the near future as it uses far to much battery power (we rally so this is crucial!) During the day in the Summer isn't a problem as we have a solar panel but in the evening in winter it can be a real problem. It only takes a couple of lights on all evening to drain the battery. Also the heating is the Aldi wet heating, which is brilliant but if the battery is low then the heating won't switch on as the 12v drives the heating pump. Not good at New Year!

Speaking to other rallying Heritage owners they have said the same thing.

Helen

#4 hgrees

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Posted 21 September 2007 - 08:45 AM

Many thanks for the replies you've provided and I think the only way I'll decide is what the deal ends up at and who the dealer is.
I only wish that delaers kept their promises and returned calls etc.
I've spoken to 5 local dealers and 4 out of the 5 don't return calls, either business is that good they don't need to or they just can't be bothered.
Compared to a Swift Conqueror or a Heritage the price difference between them is around 2000 but the Fleetwood dealer is offering in the region of 1500 more for my current Bailey. That cancels the price difference and has been recommended by someone I know.
Aftersales is very important these days and many dealerscouldlearn from this and secure return customers.
Well I think i'll be off to the NEC to finally decide.
Thanks

#5 Martin63

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Posted 21 September 2007 - 09:24 AM

Many thanks for the replies you've provided and I think the only way I'll decide is what the deal ends up at and who the dealer is.
I only wish that delaers kept their promises and returned calls etc.
I've spoken to 5 local dealers and 4 out of the 5 don't return calls, either business is that good they don't need to or they just can't be bothered.
Compared to a Swift Conqueror or a Heritage the price difference between them is around 2000 but the Fleetwood dealer is offering in the region of 1500 more for my current Bailey. That cancels the price difference and has been recommended by someone I know.
Aftersales is very important these days and many dealerscouldlearn from this and secure return customers.
Well I think i'll be off to the NEC to finally decide.
Thanks


Good luck, hgrees!

Dealers do seem to be such a mixed bag. Whilst looking for my new 'van, I contacted five dealers by email to get their prices on the 'van I was looking for. Two replied, three couldn't be bothered. I also rang two other dealers, who were going to call me back with their best price - neither did. The dealer I have gone with offered the best price and nothing appears to be too much trouble for, hence he got the business.

Things may be bouyant at the moment on new 'van sales, but let's see how many Dealers survive a sharp downturn if there is one - or is our hobby just so popular these days that they can be very selective? I wonder!

Good luck with whatever you finally go for - it's always such a tough choice!

Martin

#6 tomcat

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 10:01 PM

:D :D :D We love our fleetwood. most if not all caravans have problems, it how you handle it . bailey have the market covered you just have to count the advertisments in the caravan mags, regards Fleetwood there is half a page if your lucky. Ive been round the caravan sales and look at all the new caravans and all i can say is thres a lot of corners been cut to reduce the prices. I used to be a caravan fitter in the years when bailey started to make the senator 7000 twin axle. now days the build quality is much cheeper thiner wood to the partitions and seat bases, and i think delamitation of the floors is happening sooner on new vans that ever before. We love our caravan as im sure most of you do. (fleetwood heratage 640 cb 2003)

#7 Hedgehog

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 08:56 PM

We love the Heritage range but have never heard a single positive comment about their customer care. Also scary is the p/ex value for a one year old van - Upto 50% less than the RRP :unsure:

T

#8 jetA1

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 11:32 PM

We have a Fleetwood Sonata, great van, lots going for it when everything is working well.

BUT, we damaged a window, it took 15 months to get a replacement. We have been waiting for two replacement cupboard doors (laminate pealing off) to date we've been waiting over 18 months. I'm not certain if we're suffering because of a cr4p dealer or a cr4p manufacturer; suffice it to say we're not happy with product support of the the Fleetwood brand.

#9 shiba

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 04:37 PM

We have a Fleetwood Volante 560/4, now in the Heritage range, and we love it to bits, solid as a rock, no probs, and tows like a dream.

Shiba. :D

#10 Guest_Sorento_*

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 04:48 PM

Hi

We have just bought a Fleetwood heritage 640 ES . The money was all worth it and looking forward to France and spain in a few weeks. Comparing over last year all the models avaaialable the only other considerations were an airstream or American Trailer.
The only thing to keep in mind the better the caravan the more it might get stolen as its value is to all so be careful out there.

#11 Aaron

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 07:48 PM

Hi We too have a fleetwood, we had our heart set on a Baily pageant burgundy, but to be honest we spent a year looking round our dealers ant new and seconed hand baileys and every baily we went in something was broke! knob here, door there, even floors all soft, we then decided on the Fleetwood, apart from a leaking Battery box its as solid as a rock and has been A1 inside and out...

#12 tomcat

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 11:04 PM

I know where Fleetwood live and if i get a problem im hooking the van up and sitting in there yard till i get sorted

#13 darwen

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 06:40 PM

We have a 2004 Fleetwood Heritage 640CB. Overall we have been pleased with the layout and particularly with the Aldi heating system as we frequently use our van in the winter. We have had a few waranty problems with it but have found that by dealing directly with Fleetwood they have been brilliant in honouring the warranty i.e. replaced all upholstery 3 times until we were satisfied with it. We even had problems just outside the warranty and they allowed us to take it to a dealer of our choice and paid for the repair with no problem. Like anything if you talk to the right people you get action. Overall we are very pleased with the caravan. The caravan gets heavy use by us, our family & friends. I hope this is of some help to you. :)

#14 hgrees

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 08:45 PM

We bought a 640-ES in March of this year and despite the odd small problem we are more than happy with our new van.
The layout and equipment are all excellent, build quality seems very good. The Alde heating system works well but is quite heavy on gas compared to the blown air system.
The Powrouch fitter commented on how good the build quality was compared to his new Lunar.
I know they're expensive but so far we can't find fault with the van. It also seems to tow very well.
France in 3 weeks and we'll see how we go, can't wait.

#15 Guest_Sorento_*

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 06:02 PM

Hi
Funny that we have just bought a new Heritage 620ES and will be going to france in a few weeks. When you going and where. We are going to Normandy for a couple of days from 18th July crossing and then on to Estartit Spain as long as the fuel holds out.


We bought a 640-ES in March of this year and despite the odd small problem we are more than happy with our new van.
The layout and equipment are all excellent, build quality seems very good. The Alde heating system works well but is quite heavy on gas compared to the blown air system.
The Powrouch fitter commented on how good the build quality was compared to his new Lunar.
I know they're expensive but so far we can't find fault with the van. It also seems to tow very well.
France in 3 weeks and we'll see how we go, can't wait.



#16 Guest_Sorento_*

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 06:03 PM

Woops 640ES size does matter !!!

Hi
Funny that we have just bought a new Heritage 620ES and will be going to france in a few weeks. When you going and where. We are going to Normandy for a couple of days from 18th July crossing and then on to Estartit Spain as long as the fuel holds out.



#17 hgrees

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 06:15 AM

We're sailing on the 11th July from Portsmouth to St.Malo then on to the Vendee to La Garangeoire for 2 weeks. Hope the weathers good as France has been a bit of a mixture over the last couple of years, very much like home!!.
Only thing is it will be over too quickly as usual.
Happy holidays.

#18 Ken A

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 07:56 AM

Hi, we also purchaserd a Fleetwood Heritage 640CB in Jan 08, it has so far lived up to its expectations for a high price high quality van, like most of you, we are going to France for 3weeks 25th July sailing from Hull, going down to the Dordoigne first, then over to Logis de bruiel nr Royan, finally coming back upto the Loire, cant wait, clock ticking quite fast, hope you all enjoy your hols, keep writing so I can kee[p reading
kind regards
Sue & Ken x




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