Forest Riverforester 2501ts, 2017

M Aug 14, 2018

Annette and Dr. Juergen Menges
c/o M. Cyrus, Broker
17595 S. Tamiami Trl. Suite 111
Fort Myers, FL 33908

Customer Relation Manager
Forest River RV
Elkhardt, IN [protected]
P.O. Box 3030

To Whom it May Concern
We plan on traveling in the coming years winter season the South of the US. Thus it is extremely important to us to have a reliable and hassle free RV. In the last 3 years we have used a Coachmen Catalina from 2001, but after some minor issues we thought we would be better off with a new vehicle.
We chose a 2017 Forester 2501TS, which we bought it in December 2016 at PalmRV in Fort Myers. Forest River enjoys a great reputation and stands for high quality standards. However the performance of this vehicle was frustrating and disappointing for us. Now in the second season, we experienced the negative impact of construction and design flaws, bad workmanship and usage of low quality material.
We spent more time in RV repairs this one year with the new vehicle than with the 16-year-old coachmen motorhome in the last three years before
We spent more time in RV repair than we would ever be afraid of, due to our experience with the old and pre-owned RV we used before.
Example of a design flaw:
This automatic leveling system is a very good idea, but even in its brand new status the automatic levelling did not function at all. Whenever using the system the RV was standing more unlevel then without use of the system. PalmRV tried their best to fix the problem, but they were not successful as time ran out because we wanted to travel in our RV and not have it in repair shop for extended time.
In addition, we had to disable the system after an hour of false alarm completely
Another design flaw is the chassis clearance height of about 10 inches it is nearly impossible (given the typical ramps at typical gas stations) not to touch the ground in some instances, if you are not able to back up after you have spotted such a problematic ramp.
Example of a bad workmanship:
During the first week of use, the table felt apart. The table top was not attached appropriately (the staples were much too short), so that it came off during our first trip
The facing of the fridge door felt down several times. It was necessary to build in a new plywood part that was about 3/16 inch longer, this part stayed in place for several months. The original part was too short in length! (This was repaired by ourselves, on the road).
Example of a bad workmanship in combination with use of low quality material:
The bench seat broke down without any noteworthy load. Inside, we saw wood of unacceptable low quality. The wood quality is inappropriate for a RV, which is expected to last more than just the time you need to drive from the dealer's back yard. (This was repaired by ourselves, on the road).
The sliding door in the bedroom is screwed to the ceiling; it came down after using the door 3-5 times! This was repaired in a RV service shop on the road, we had to change our tour in a way to arrange for this service appointment two weeks early.
The plumbing to the faucet in the kitchen was so loosely connected, that after 5 months of usage water leaked out during the night, wetting floor and kitchen cabinet. The cabinet surfaces are finished by glued on foils and therefore very sensitive to water, this short water leak ruined the appearance. (This was repaired with the support of a helpful guy in the same campground).
The rear cameras on both sides are an awesome safety feature. Our camera on the right side had contact problems from the very beginning. After only a light rain we got a blue screen or some very unstable video signal, not useful as a safety feature. PalmRV tried to repair it, but no satisfying solution was available.
Wooden slats are used in many locations throughout the RV. These are nice looking, but they should not come off in the first or second season on a brand new RV.
Trough the rear window a lot of water comes in during rain and carwash.
Our RV has 3 slide-outs, which provide plenty of room inside. But, the slide-out in the bedroom makes noise shortly after using it. The wooden frame is unstable and loose, perhaps due to a mismatch. It is sliding out too far which puts weight on the frame and crimp it somehow.
Currently, the RV is stored in a RV service shop near Palm Springs, we hope that the people there can complete the above repairs during the summer. We will return from Germany to our RV in December, hoping to find it fit for our plans and will start a new tour through the South-West.
Unfortunately, the warranty period has expired. We feel that we will face many more problems, such as early break downs and replacements in the coming years.
We know many people in Germany, who want to travel through the US like we do. They asked for our hands-on and good experiences. Sorry, that we cannot recommend Forest River Motorhomes to them and others. Maybe we can at least report on a good customer service

Last but not least this problems listet above and the problems that are inevitably to be expected during the next years can cause serious accidents.

Please confirm the receipt of the letter

Best regards
Annette & Juergen Menges

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