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Frequently Asked Questions

The following section is provided to help answer some of the questions you may have and is based on our experiences with American Motorhomes.

The information provided here is believed to be accurate and is provided in good faith. Griffin American Motorhomes accepts no liability for any inaccuracies that may occur. See Terms of Website Use for more info.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is size an issue ?

American RVs are large and the first time you drive one can be quite daunting. However after the first hour or so you'll start to feel more comfortable and begin to enjoy the enormous benefits of travelling in such luxury. An American RV can go pretty much anywhere a bus can and only the narrowest of roads/country lanes should be avoided.

As RV users we have enjoyed many trips including several to France. It is worth planning ahead to ensure your route avoids low bridges (most RVs are at least 11ft tall) and any roads with width restrictions. You should display a notice visible by the driver indicating overall height (in metres and feet/inches).

It is also worth checking with campsites to ensure they have a pitch available suitable for the size and weight of the vehicle. American RVs are heavy and can get stuck on soft ground.

Recently available is the Snooper Ventura Sat Nav System. Not only does it allow you to enter the weight and physical dimensions of your RV but also lists 8600 campsites across the UK/EU - For More Info Go to the Snooper Website

 

What are the Driving Licence Requirements ?

This is the subject of much discussion amongst RV owners and an issue that the RVDA are currently trying to resolve with the DVLA.

The DVLA states the following:

If a vehicle has a GVWR of between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes then a class C1 licence is needed. For those that passed their driving test before 1st January 1997 then this entitlement is automatic.

If a vehicle has a GVWR of over 7.5 tonnes then a class C licence (LGV2) is needed. This is the 'Rigid' licence and you can tow a trailer up to 750kg.

If you want to tow more than 750kg and the GVWR of the vehicle is over 7.5 tonnes then a class C+E (LGV1) is needed. This is the 'Artic' licence and if you intend to tow a car/trailer behind your RV then this is the licence the DVLA states you need.

If the vehicle has a GVWR of between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes and you have class C1+E entitlement then you can actually drive a vehicle/trailer combination that does not exceed 8.25 tonnes.

The majority of American RVs these days have a GVWR of over 7.5 tonnes so the question is can you drive one on a car licence ?

We would recommend that you obtain the LGV licence applicable as outlined by the DVLA. This is relatively straightforward to do and can be achieved by attending a 3-4 day course with the test at the end.

If you live in the Bristol/Bath area we can recommend

A.L.J Ltd - call them on 01761 232093 and ask for Michele.

 

What does GVWR mean ?

The Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the maximum permissable weight of the vehicle including all fluids, passengers, cargo, optional equipment and accessories. Also referred to as Maximum Allowable Mass (MAM).

Since American RV Manufactures specify GVWR in pounds here are some useful conversions for common GVWR.

7700lbs = 3.5 tonnes, 16500lbs = 7.5 tonnes, 18000lbs = 8.16 tonnes , 20500lbs = 9.30 tonnes, 22000lbs = 9.98 tonnes

The Curb Weight (CW) or Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW) is the weight of the vehicle without any factory intalled options, passengers, cargo ..etc.

The payload is the GVWR minus the CW. This is the allowance for fluids, passngers, cargo ..etc.

It is possible to re-plate a vehicle to give a lower GVWR and this would normally be done so as to meet the 7.5 tonne limit so the vehicle can be driven with a car licence. However, this will reduce the payload so it is important to check the RV you're interested in meets your payload requirements.

 

Useful Links

 

Lots of Useful Info On Motorhome Ownership

American RV Magazine Website

Caravanninglinks

Mobile RV Repairs
American RV Enthusiasts Website
OurAmericanDream
The Big Pitch Guide
RVDA Website - Driving the Industry Forward
Another Useful Site
Custom Upholstery Service
   
 
 
 
 
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