The Winnebago Horizon from a User’s Point of View

By Don Cohen

Last fall, RV Business magazine handed its “2017 RV of the Year” award to the Winnebago Horizon, an ultra-contemporary upscale Class A diesel. Long-time RVers Don and Terry Cohen spent 10 weeks in this radically new motorhome, testing it for livability. Here are highlights from their review:

Terry and I have lived in several homes over the decades, and with each space, our interest in design has grown. We’re appreciative and critical. It’s why we we’ve owned two Winnebago Class C Navionsbecause of their simplicity and clean, Euro-styed interiors. So an invitation to leave our Colorado winter behind and review the ultra-modern new Horizon at a resort in California was truly a lottery win.

The Horizon comes in two models and floorplans: the 41’1” 40A, and 43’3” 42Q.

 

The New Horizon Inside and Out

Terry and Don Cohen host a video tour of the award-winning luxury Horizon:

 

With the clean lines of a luxury yacht, the Horizon redefines the modern motor coach. It starts with the refreshing disappearance of exterior swirls and swoops that have defined RVs since the early 1990s. This is a design that will appear less dated as the years go by.

I marvel at the level of assembly precision and sleekness of this coach. The daily living difference is profound, and it isn’t about the move from a Class C to a Class A. It’s about environment. The reason the Horizon won the RV Business 2018 “RV of the Year” award is simple: design, both inside and out.

The interior is open and light, with a sophisticated, contemporary feel.

 

When RV-savvy visitors walk into the Horizon, there are two universal comments: The first is how open it feels. That’s due to expansive windows that aren’t separated by mullions or screens. The second is ambience. A slim center canopy drops slightly from the ceiling with embedded LED lighting. Gone are the mirrors and wallpaper, filigree wood and cut glass, and pedestrian hardware that confuse ornateness with class.

Instead, lighter fabric and porcelain and sleek Italian Tecnoform cabinetry give the interior a sophisticated aura. On the galley side, fashion-forward counters and liberal use of stainless steel amp up the modern feel.

The Horizon interior has the clean lines of a luxury yacht, and the functionality of an urban loft.

 

Yet there’s another side of the design coin: floorplan. Looking pretty and being functional are two different things, and I’m here to tell you that the Horizon absolutely lives as well as it looks-both floor plan options. They make sense, and they make extended or full-time living exceedingly comfortable.

The roomy kitchen island offers a lot more space than competitive galleys, and the uncluttered open space of the living area is very, very flexible, thanks to smart furniture. By pulling a lever underneath the “Glide and Dine” table, for instance, you can slide it a couple feet to the left or right. Lift two extension leafs in place, and there’s comfortable seating for four.

The kitchen excels, not only with an island, but with a coffee bar and practical cabinet stack.

 

Underneath the couch are sturdy steel rail frames that pull up and lock firmly in place to become rock-solid ottomans or sleeping extensions. During the day, they slide back under the sofa, to remove the awkward tripping hazard. An optional fireplace completes the urban comfort.

A steel-frame ottoman/sleeping extension tucks under the sofa when not in use.

 

This 40A floorplan has a single bath, but two entries (hall and bedroom) create great pass-through access. There’s never a traffic jam and the dual flow make a lot of sense. The bedroom is very maneuverable. We’re fans of Tempur-Pedic, but the adjustable firmness of the Ideal Rest king mattress makes it a pleasure to fall asleep and wake up on every morning.

The 42Q floorplan has a half bath and master bath; the 40A has a single bath with entrances from hallway and bedroom.

 

Coming from our Navion, we were immediately struck by the smoother ride and much quieter cab noise at freeway speeds. The six-speed Allison transmission is fully electronic and controlled by push button. A nifty switch immediately engages the downshift mode when descending steeper grades. A high-def camera built into the Xite infotainment system gives the driver a view of blind spots.

A high-def camera built into the infotainment system gives the driver a view of blind spots.

 

As I write this review, I’m sitting in the living room lounge. Winnebago has clearly broken free of the gravitational pull of traditional design, and we know it won’t be for everyone. But at least now, in the diesel pusher segment, there’s finally a modern choice.

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For the fascinating story on the three-year research and development process behind the Horizon, go to https://winnebagolife.com/2018/02/reimagining-the-future-the-winnebago-horizon

For more information on Horizon features and MSRP, go to WinnebagoInd.com.

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