Motorhome dealers are your entry point to the motorhome market. They act as an informed go-between between buyers and sellers and finding a good motorhome broker is as important when buying a motorhome as finding a good real estate agent is when buying a house. We would venture that a good broker is even more so in our case as the motorhome will take us far away from the point of sale. Motorhomes move, houses don’t. So reliability is critical.
Like any good agent, a motor home dealer should be able to assess your needs then suggest the best solution. Our experience of the New Zealand market is that it is too small to have proper motorhome dealers as such. Most new motorhome sales are direct through the NZ manufacturers. Manufacturers from overseas, of course, need to have local dealers. Most dealers in NZ have exclusive rights, again due to the small market. This covers the new motorhome market.
The used motorhome market is another story, however. Our research so far shows that most dealers rarely deal with new motorhomes, they tend to be in the used motorhome market but we suspect this is a function of both the size of the market and also where we are in our research. If you have any thoughts on this or advice you can offer, please do so through the form at the bottom of this page.
Motorhome Body or Base Vehicle Dealership
In our particular case, it is important to make the distinction between the motor home dealer – the person who will sell you the motorhome – and the dealer network for the base vehicle. For a venture such as the one we are planning, the dealer network for the base vehicle is critical – if the vehicle is drivable but not liveable that can be dealt with but if the vehicle is liveable but not drivable, we have a problem.
So much of our emphasis will be on the reliability and suitability for our venture of the base vehicle which brings us back to the question of the chassis. Again.
Worldwide Network of Motorhome Dealers
An important factor in our choice of base vehicle will be the worldwide coverage of the dealer network. This is even more important than the buyer-seller go-between because once we are travelling, the person who sold the vehicle is no longer of concern to us. It is the people who will maintain and service the base vehicle who will become our “new best friends”…
Most motorhome base vehicles are popular and reliable medium tonnage truck chassises. The motorhome manufacturers in New Zealand tend to use Mercedes Benz, Mitsubishi or Isuzu base vehicles. All these manufacturers have extensive global dealer networks which means that we can reasonably expect to have our motorhome serviced by professionals wherever we may find ourselves.
For our purposes, we are not considering base vehicles such as the Fiat Ducato as it is front-wheel-drive and does not offer the same traction advantages as a rear-wheel-drive vehicle. That’s not to say that the vehicle itself in no good, not at all. Just that it doesn’t suit our needs.
Have you used a Motorhome Dealer recently?
Do you have any advice on finding and using a motorhome dealer? Has any one stood out for their exemplary service? Please, share it right here!