Spartan to Intro Low-Cost, Big-Block Chassis
Spartan Motors Inc. will introduce on Tuesday (Nov. 27) what it describes as “the first low-cost, big-block, big performance diesel pusher chassis to hit the market.”
The new chassis, called the NVS, will be introduced during the RV industry’s National Trade show in Louisville, which opens Tuesday. The NVS will be at Spartan’s display, Booth 5219.
The NVS features a Cummins 300-horsepower (hp) engine and Allison MH3000 six-speed transmission capable to producing 860 foot/lbs. of torque. It also has standard full air-ride and air brakes packaged in a 228-inch wheel base for 34- to 37-foot floorplans.
Motorhome manufacturers will be able to use the NVS to produce coaches retailing for under $100,000, said John Sztykiel, Spartan’s president and COO.
“The NVS concept is very similar to the successful EC-2000, the industry’s first low-cost diesel pusher that we introduced in 1991,” Sztykiel said. “The end result will be improved ride, handling and safety performance. Our intelligent suspension system, which complements our independent front suspension, could have as dramatic an impact on the RV business as IFS did six years ago.”
Previous attempts to market diesel pushers priced to retail below $100,000 have met with a lukewarm response because the chassis were equipped with 260- or 275-hp engines, which made them under-powered, according to many RV enthusiasts.
Currently, the 330-hp Caterpillar is the “smallest preferred” engine on the diesel pusher market, said Brian Shea, president of the Motorhome Division of Gulf Stream Coach Inc.