Nothing beats the joy of going out on an adventure in a recreational vehicle. In fact, the market of RVs has grown exponentially in the last few years, according to Mordor Intelligence Reports.
Whether you’re planning to buy a new RV or upgrade the current one, there’s a wide range of options and models to choose from. Among the most popular brands out there are Thor and Forest River. So which one should you go for?
In today’s article, we’ll provide you with an in-depth look that puts Forest River vs Thor in a head-to-head comparison in terms of brand history, models, design, prices, and more to help you pick the suitable RV brand for your needs.
So without further ado, let’s jump right in and see what these two brands are all about!
Ideally, Forest River is a better choice if you’re looking for towables and campers while Thor offers better Class A and C motorhomes. Although Thor’s motorhomes typically come at a relatively higher price, they make it up by offering a longer warranty to add more value to the purchase.
Let’s have a quick look at some of the key comparison points between the two giant manufacturers, so you can figure out which one is more suitable for you:
Thor is one of the oldest manufacturers of recreational vehicles and motorhomes that have been going strong to this day since its launch in 1983 by Peter B. Orthwein.
Thor managed to make a name for itself due to the production of a variety of recreational vehicle models.
However, they’re also popular for their acquisition strategy, as the company name owns a variety of subsidiaries, including Airstream, Jayco, Heartland RVs, Livin Lite RV, Hymer, and many more!
On the other hand, the founder of Forest River, Peter Leigl, launched the company in 1996. Forest River was a huge success and had a huge potential for growth, which is why Berkshire Hathaway has taken the opportunity and fully acquired the company in 2005.
Both Forest River and Thor currently have their headquarters in Elkhart, Indiana because the state is responsible for more than 80% of the RV production all over the world!
Both Forest River and Thor offer a huge range of motorhomes, including RVs and toy haulers. However, Forest River has a much wider range of products, offering up to 46 models to choose from.
Thor, on the flip side, focuses greatly on class A, B, and C motorhomes rather than towable vehicles and trailers.
As previously mentioned, the two companies generally focus on different types of motorhomes. Forest River may not build the most durable motorhomes, but they still offer a reasonable level of sturdiness with a wide range of features as well as floor plan designs.
On the other hand, Thor focuses on creating smaller but luxurious motorhomes that will typically contain a plethora of great features.
With that said, Thor has its fair share of controversies when it comes to durability and construction, especially for entry-level RVs and motorhomes.
Both Thor and Forest River come at a relatively similar price range for entry-level options.
However, if you’re planning to go for a luxurious option, Thor will typically get slightly more expensive than Forest River.
This makes Forest River a better value for the price if you’re buying a mid-range or a top-range model.
Maintenance and repairs are the keys to keeping your RV in mint condition and running smoothly.
That’s why you always need to keep an eye on the warranty policy of the manufacturer because it can save you a fortune!
Forest River offers a conventional warranty that extends to 12 months or 12,000 miles from the date of purchase, whichever comes first.
Although this warranty has been an industry standard for a long time, Thor Industries has recently stepped up its warranty game!
Currently, all Thor Class A and C motorhomes are covered by a 6 year lamination warranty as well as a 12 year structural warranty, which gives Thor an easy win in terms of long-term investments and value for money!
Luckily, both Forest River and Thor offer a wide network of certified service centers that you can get your RV checked and repaired at.
Additionally, both of them make it quite easy to find the nearest one to you by opting for the online helper on the company’s official website.
If you’re planning to rent an RV, you’ll have a completely different set of priorities from someone who is buying.
Instead of focusing on long term features such as durability, maintenance costs, warranty policy, and resale value, you’ll focus more on the short term benefits of your stay at the camper.
This includes rental costs, safety, comfort, ease of use, and the variety of amenities and features that come with the camper.
In that case, Forest River seems like a much more reasonable balance because it comes at a decent price, so it typically costs less for rentals.
They also offer a variety of entry-level RVs that are significantly durable and comfortable with a lot of features that are only offered at Thor’s mid-range and top-range options.
Forest River and Thor are two of the market giants. However, there are some differences between the two that make them ideal for different types of buyers.
For example, if you’re interested in buying a motorhome for the long term, we believe that going for Thor’s options will give you more value for money due to the significantly improved warranty policy that they offer.
However, if it’s your first ever RV and you’re looking for an entry-level camper or trailer, you’ll find a much wider range of options at Forest River to choose from in addition to multiple floor plan options to suit your budget.