Prevost

I see no one has reviewed the Prevost

I guess there is a natural progression to Prevost in the motorhome world. With the cost of a mid to late 90’s Prevost the same or less than most new fiberglass rv’s it may be time to consider Prevost as something more than “out of reach” for the average person . True the new Prevost of almost any converter is over a million but here we are talking about older units , usually non slide, usually garaged when not in use and serviced on schedule – let’s say 200k or less in cost. Most would quit reading this review after I mentioned non slide. It seems that fun somehow equates to the number of slides you can stick on the side of your box. Prevost was slow into the slide market because they were concerned about safety and stability . Be sure to google “motorhome accidents” before you assume current motorhomes are safe.

Prevost is all about chassis. The xl 1994 to 2000 is a riveted coach while the 2001 and forward have no rivets. Rivets are your friend but you can read about that yourself on any Prevost website. The chassis rides low and the wheelbase to overall length is in the 92% range. This means great stability down the road and minimal wind effects. Almost no overhang of the chassis over the back wheels. The Prevost was built to drive down the road – stable ,smooth and quiet and it does all of that. That same great chassis can get complicated in a campground that is not level . Advantage to the non Prevost on this issue.

The older Prevost is actually fairly easy to maintain. A bus driver does not want to have to off load 45 people on to another bus if a belt breaks for example. The critical belts can be changed in a few minutes without any tools- I must say I was impressed with that revelation . The bulk oil feed requires a lever turn not an oil can. Any diesel shop can work on the Detroit Diesel Series 60 but they are rock solid more miles than you will ever drive a motorcoach. In fact, finding the coach with low miles may actually be a negative. If there are chassis or engine issues you can always find a Prevost service center regardless of who converted the coach. Don’t buy one of these without a Prevost Pre Purchase inspection. It will be the best motorhome $400 you will ever spend.

The interior is usually laminate in this vintage which is a welcome departure from wood IMO. Laminate is both beautiful and durable. Most of these coaches look new inside with regard to the laminate – 15 years later. Not so of cloth or wood unless it is near the ceiling . Royal converted the Prevost with wood if that is your preference and they did a nice job.

Prevost converters make good use of inverters . Two 4kw inverters means you can drive down the road with two air conditioners on without starting the generator. Quiet, clean and more MPG without the generator. You will need 50 amps to run everything in the campground ,in fact, I saw it eating 70 amps on occasion so if you are looking for a back woods experience you will have to be selective as to campgrounds. They publish several good books on how to find the right camp for a big rig.

I have had two previous coaches , a 98 H.R. Endeavor which I traded for a higher end 96 Vogue which I sold and then came the 98 Prevost Liberty and I am fairly new to it so there may be more to this story later. I have not driven a late model tag axle fiberglass coach but I suspect the Prevost will still have the edge with the ride, stability and the initial investment will be less with the Prevost. I expect about 10K per year in upkeep and upgrades. Oh, another point of interest. The folks that own and maintain these are a great bunch who would help you any way possible.

Wave

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21 Comments

  • Vernon October 22, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    What mpg can one expect in a 1996 Prevost?

    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Wave November 14, 2014 at 3:45 am

      7-8mpg

      Reply
  • Jeff March 9, 2015 at 12:45 am

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I have had two fiberglass (one currently) units and I’m seriously considering a 95-2000 Prevost. The fit and finish of my cheaper units is not good. I have kids, and we currently have a bunkhouse. I’m slowly persuading my wife to consider a non-bunkhouse, non-slide coach. Am I crazy? I just prefer quality over anything else. Polished stainless, laminate, tile. I think they are beautiful. Thank you for this review. At least I have one person on my team!

    Reply
    • Jeff April 26, 2016 at 6:44 am

      How do I go about getting a Prevost pre purchase inspection?

      Reply
  • Bob March 12, 2015 at 4:06 am

    Couldn’t agree more with the author’s overview and zeroing in on the value, strength, safety, style and just plain wonderful way to travel down the highways and byways that the late-model, professionally converted Prevost’s present! The ‘punch’ that slides have done to none-slide coach’s makes them and even more attractive value….and if you want more proof, just price out a brand new Prevost shell and engine (before any type of conversion is done) and you’ll be shocked as to how much that bare-bones Bus list for from Prevost, Canada! And btw, happy and ULTRA-excited to report, that after a somewhat long period of due-diligence and evaluation of various Prevost for sale across the US, my ‘just purchased’ 1995 45 foot Liberty (with absolutely gorgeous laminates and interior throughout) is currently on its maiden journey, being professionally driven to the West Coast, so that she can soon be formally introduced to her new owner (me)….. 🙂
    Whaaaaaaa-Whoooooooo!!

    Reply
    • Mark March 24, 2015 at 3:14 pm

      Are you in Southern CA? Would like to see it. Liberty always sells at a premium and worth it. Can call them and will still have all info on the coach and they are helpful. I am looking at the same thing, older 98-2002 or so Prevost. Probably non slide for first one. Cost is great (relative). Was thinking of an HDT truck and 5th wheel. That’s about 100k truck converted and 175K 5th wheel. Still deciding which way to go. But cruising up a hill at 70 is nice. No slides is fine, better integrity but when Prevost started doing their own slides I think in 2002, there were good, well designed. That’s why I would buy Liberty, there slide are all from factory, Marathon and Millennium does after market Valid I think. These engines will run a 1M miles since have no EGR, DPF stuff on them. Great engines. Did you get a Prevost full inspection? (Cost on that?) Thx Mark .

      Reply
  • Dean June 18, 2015 at 3:34 am

    looking at getting my first prevost. country coach 97 40 foot. 1 owner. he passed away several years ago and son selling coach. hasn’t been driven much in last 2 years. tires 2 yr.old and new batteries. what should i be looking for when checking out the coach. seller states he starts the engine regularly and takes it for a drive. bus is plugged in to 50 amp when stored

    Reply
    • Wave June 18, 2015 at 6:05 am

      Go to prevostcommunity.com and read. I would suggest you take a Prevost owner to evaluate any future coach

      Wave

      Reply
  • Charles June 27, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    Notify me of followup comments via e-mail

    Reply
  • Ray De July 13, 2015 at 1:37 am

    I also own a 98 Prevost Marathon. I started with a HR imperial then a Country Coach Magna. Both with slides. The Prevost is a real bus. All the others are plastic RVs. It is an incredible bus. 7.89 mpg on long trips. Smoothest ride imaginable. Built like a SS tank. We love our Prevost. Oh yea did I mention we get a lot of looks.

    Reply
  • Ma Cunning July 24, 2015 at 7:17 am

    Thank You for this article!!!

    Reply
  • Ma Cunning July 24, 2015 at 8:11 am

    I have a 1996 Royale Coach. 40 feet/NO slides.
    I looked several month before purchasing this in 2005. I had drove 40 foot Crown school buses as a professional, and drove a Big rig druring the summer months (with a set of doubles).
    So when I was looking for my very first “motorhome” I had a very particular checklist of what it had to have.
    It had to have a detroit 60 series engine. NO V92s That meant no prevost older than 1995/96
    The converter had to have a real wood interior with some type of corian countertops (NO laminate.
    The generator had to be on the driver’s side of the bus.
    The entertainment center had to be on the opposite sie (the passenger side) under a full length awning.
    It had to have three ac units on top.
    It had to be no longer than 40 foot & must have NO Slides!!!
    Had to be a XL, NOT a H2 (height of the outside is a major negative in travels)
    As a professional Driver i knew that many states, including my state of California – had a limit of 40 feet for pleasure Rving. 41 feet and over had to stick on Commercially designated routes! Many state and federal parks and private parks as well were most times limited to 35 RVs. They would more times than not let 40 feet Motor coaches in, but not 45s!
    The colors inside and out .had to be earth tones!
    It had to have two couches and a queen size bed
    Had to have jake brakes
    Had to have a full sized household refrigerator.
    had to have a insta-hot system run off the diesel.
    I LOVE having Rivets.

    The first used Prevost i looked at was a 1995 Prevost Country coach
    Seeing it early on was a blessing! It gave me the above list of what i wanted – because it had NONE of these things (except being 40 feet with no slides)
    The color was a horrible purple
    The generator was right next to the outside entertainment center on the passenger side.
    It had a camper trailer type refrig/freezer.
    It had had a electrical fire at some point. The seller had tried to hide it – but not only did i with a limited sense of smell choke, but the insulation in the bays, around the tires, etc, were melted lol
    Things i would look for now different?
    Still rather have rivets outer exterior BUT I would want a 2002 or newer now. The front passeger/ Drivers side half sliding window is a total pain, and leaks air (and thus wind noise)! I want a ful view window with the smaller cut-in slider
    The doorway is much wider once you get to no older than 2002 prevost. Too many type have i run afoal of that dratted protruding door latch on the left side bang my arms on it getting in and out. the door doesn’t swing open another either lol.
    Would have the two sofa BOTH be sleepers, not just one being a fold/down sleeper but the other being a curved sofa fit only for a child of six/seven or younger
    would make sure that my feet didnt dangle inches above the slide out step cover when I sat in the shot-gun seat 🙂 (had to plant my feet up again the front or on the chairs chaise to be comfortable.
    Make sure that it had full bus air conditioning as well next time lol

    STILL do not want a Prevost longer than 41 inches (40 no longer being a option)
    Still will NOT get a slider (even if Prevost now deos design it’s structure and frame to stethen for slides it itself installs during constrution – something many people never thought about when adding sliders or purchasing sliders with after maket installations 🙂 STILL , even a Prevost build in slider is not good enough for me! If Im going to take up nesting in a area for sometime – well best to get good quality large screen rooms alonside the bus. When those slides and all the way in, it makes the interior a great deal smaller while you are driving down the road for others to move about in comfort and visibility!. or build one more permanent that you can drive up next to. The whole idea of having a Motor Coach and any other RV/Trailer?tent, etc is to partake of the wanderlust every soul has within!

    Reply
    • Ma Cunning July 24, 2015 at 8:24 am

      now if I could find someone to just update my 1996 Royale Coach’s entry door and drivers’ side window and bring in a new fold-out sleeper sofa ( getting rid of the old curved loveseat styled one) I would be happy to keep what Ive had for ten years now 🙂 lol

      Reply
  • Wavel Wells September 16, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Well its been 3years since I started this thread with purchase of a 1998 Liberty Prevost. I have no regrets with the Prevost purchase. It has never required towing, the series 60 DD is a solid engine even approching 20 yrs. in use. The Allison 4000 transmission has been rock solid as well. What does fail on these are the same things that fail on all coaches: AC’s, house water pumps, batteries, battery chargers, refrigerators, toilets , water heaters, dump valves etc. On the chassis side ther are air bags, valves that regulate those air bags “norgen” valves, sterring components, exhaust componets etc.

    The ride is the absolute best in the motorcoach world and any honest salesman who knows Prevost will testify to this. Because it rides low, I did manage to destroy part of the exhaust system in an OKC campground. I have learned since to raise this thing up when the topography is not level. The water pump (Headhunter) did fail but the company allowed me $600 toward a new one even though it was several years old. They are a “heads up”company in my estimation.

    Looking back I would have just replaced some of the things with an active life of 10-15 years. It is really much easier to do this instead of allowing componets to fail when you are on the road. I like the fact that it is a true bus converted into a motorhome without holes in the side (non slide). The fact it is 45 ft. Does cause more pre planning on routes and campgrounds but I am convinced that the idea of 45 feet is much worse than than the reality. I have parked beside folks that thought it was brand new at 18 yrs. old and I like that.

    Wave

    Reply
    • Jon September 22, 2016 at 12:38 am

      My parents just purchased a 1994 Prevost Liberty and could use some advise on some buttons and lights, and have no access to a manual. If you are available to help, could you send me your contact info? Jonk73@yahoo.com

      Reply
      • Wave November 5, 2016 at 11:47 pm

        Yes Jon, I will try. Take a good photo post it. Also some great help at prevocommunity.com

        Reply
        • Wave November 6, 2016 at 12:16 am

          That should have said prevostcommunity.com

          Reply
  • Claude Laforest October 25, 2016 at 1:40 am

    Hi, I’m shopping for my 4th classA RV. My last was a HR Endeavor pusher. Never again a cheap fiberglass and lauan box. I promised to myself the next one is a Prevost. I’m in Quebec, yes the country of the Prevost 😉 and found one here in Quebec for sale by original owner. A 1994 Marathon. Always stored in heated garage and maintained by Prevost. Serie 60 engine. Other than some outdated fabric colors in the bedroom and paint scheme it look very good to me. Is there anything I need to know before buying.

    Reply
    • Wave November 6, 2016 at 12:04 am

      Get a prevost pre purchase evaluation and use needed work to buffer asking price. I also take an rv tech with long Prevost experience with me . Also go to prevostcommunity.com, then click articles and finally click “prevost prepurchase inspection ” by Jon Wehrenberg. It is 17 pages and excellent.

      Wave

      Reply
  • PHIL March 1, 2017 at 6:01 am

    EXCELLENT ADVICE. THANKS…PHIL.

    Reply
  • PHIL March 6, 2017 at 7:26 am

    THANKS!

    Reply

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