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Newmar Corp.’s low profile diesel engine motorhome, the NewAire, became available for retail sale this week during Caravan Salon, the huge trade/retail show in Dusseldorf, Germany.

The NewAire carries a price tag of $250,000 in U.S. currency, according to Ross Marshall, chairman and CEO of Marshall Motor Homes, the Knoxville, Tenn.-based
distributor of the NewAire outside of North America.

The $250,000 price includes the cost of freight from Nappanee, Ind. ($5,000 to $10,000) and the German import duty amounting to 10% of the retial price, Marshall said.

The 29-foot NewAire created a buzz among the primarily German audience because of its sleek exterior styling and the fact it is equipped with a Cummins 260-horsepower engine, significantly more horsepower than what is available for European motorhomes of similar size.

Meanwhile, the NewAire’s interior styling got mixed reviews. More than one German observer described the interior design as a partially successful attempt by American designers to imitate European design.

Generally, Carvan Salon attendees also said the NewAire would be improved by the addition of wood paneling inside the coach.

The NewAire is a little more than 8 feet wide in order to comply with European traffic regulations and it was designed to satisfy all other European standards and specifications, Marshall said.

The NewAire was introduced as a concept vehicle during the 1999 Louisville show, and Newmar executives had been hesitant until now to provide detailed information about the new motorhome. They were tight-lipped because they viewed Europe the target market for the NewAire, Marshall said.

For the NewAire, Newmar is building its own chassis, code-named the Newco, and it is using a speically designed Spartan Motors chassis.

Additionally, the NewAire uses an Allison T2000 series 5-speed transmission and it has a 24,000-pound gross vehicle weight rating.

NewAire production began in September.

Marshall Motor Homes has assembled a European service network for the NewAire. Marshall did not want to provide details except to add, “We have the backing of Cummins.”