Deemed one of the sharpest new A-bodies on the market two years ago upon its debut, the Essex by Newmar Corp. has been fine-tuned for the 2005 model year, according to Kyle McCrary, director of high-end motorized product for the Nappanee, Ind., motorhome builder.
The new models were introduced at FMCA’s 72nd International Convention, Aug. 16-19 in Redmond, Ore.
Baggage doors on the 2005 Essex, available in lengths of 41 and 45 feet with up to four slideouts, are 12 inches higher. providing better access and added space in the storage bays.
Following a growing ergonomic trend, the baggage doors are hinged on the sides in an “east-west” design. One storage bay houses several electronic components along with an optional 23-inch flat-screen LCD TV on a moveable arm that can be positioned out of the sun.
Larger Accuride ACCU-SHIELD nonpolish wheels also part of the upgrade on the Essex, assembled on a Spartan K2 chassis with a 500-hp Cummins ISM engine and six-speed Allison transmission.
The interior offers three-position memory seating (for seats, pedals, steering wheel and exterior mirror) and a standard 32-inch plasma TV in the living area. The rear bedroom features an authentically new 23-inch Philips TV that doubles as an LCD computer monitor and decorative mirror when the TV is off.
A 45-foot Essex, featuring a rear wardrobe, retails for about $482,000.
“It’s our top of the line and offers our Kountry Klub members and Newmar owners the ability to move up in price and opulence without having to go to other manufacturers,” McCrary said. “It didn’t used to be (Newmar’s high end). The London Aire, which used to be our top end, will be brought back next year. In fact, we may show a prototype of the new London Aire at Louisville, and it will be above the Essex in price, more in the (Monaco) Signature range. It’s just going to be redesigned and repositioned after being shelved for a year.”