Last updated on September 26th, 2023 at 05:42 am
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Regarded as one of the largest manufacturers of RVs in North America, it’s never a bad decision to get some more info and read reliable Forest River RV reviews. There’s so much to find out. What’s Forest River like as a company? How do Forest River RVs perform on the road? Are Forest River Rigs long-lasting?
In this article, we’ll address all things Forest River: details about the company, the number of RVs they currently manufacture, and lots more. We’ll also take a deep dive into some Forest River RV reviews, including ones from reliable customers and long-time RVers.
At the end of this guide, you’ll be completely clued up about everything there is to know about Forest River and their lineup of RVs. You’ll then be able to make an informed purchase or upgrade based on what we reveal about their RVs. Let’s get started and talk about Forest River now!
Forest River RV Company Overview
Founded in 1996 by Peter Leigl, Forest River Inc. is only one name for many different assets and products offered by Forest River. They specialize in RV manufacturing, commercial trucks, pontoon boats, shuttle buses, and cargo trailers. Not only do they produce RVs under the Forest River name, but they also have a variety of additional companies and divisions that make quality RVs!
Other Forest River companies and divisions of Forest River include:
- East to West
- Primetime Manufacturing
- Forest River Park Models
Forest River itself is a company under the umbrella of Berkshire Hathaway, so it belongs to a fairly large conglomerate. However, they are dedicated to building a better RV, both for the new RVer, families, and full-timers alike!
They offer manufacturing facilities in the Midwest and West Coast so orders can be filled faster and travelers can hit the open road quicker! Forest River manufactures their RVs using a complex and rigorous inspection process covering everything you want in a new RV. We’ll talk more about their inspection and testing process later, but there’s a lot to be said for Forest River’s dedication!
What Kinds Of RVs Does Forest River Offer?
Forest River offers a wide variety of RVs, especially when you consider the other companies they own, such as Dynamax and Coachmen. However, we’re just going to take a look at the Forest River-branded RVs today.
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly rig, I highly suggest checking out what Coachmen has to offer. On the other end of the spectrum, Dynamax is perfect for those of you shopping for a luxury motorhome!
The Forest River RV brand name manufactures the following types of RVs:
- Travel trailers
- Fifth wheels
- Class A motorhomes
- Class C motorhomes
- Toy haulers
- Pop-up camper trailers
But how many different types of each of these RVs do they manufacture, and what are the average lengths of these trailers and motorhomes? You can scroll to the bottom of this page for the complete list.
What Do Customers Have To Say About Forest River?
Now you know a little bit about all of the makes and models offered by Forest River, what do customers have to say about the company as a whole? There are many different reviews for Forest River at this point in time. Let’s look at what people like you have to say about this company!
Forest River earns a great deal of positive reviews for several reasons. Their rigs are appealing to such a wide audience, that it’s no surprise I see their campers and trailers when I’m traveling around in my rig!
Variety Of Models And Styles
Not only does Forest River have a huge number of models and styles, but they can offer these models in a variety of formats. Take the Hemisphere travel trailer, for example. Not only does this travel trailer come in both a fifth wheel style hitch, but it also comes in a traditional travel trailer style hitch.
It also has floor plans that offer toy hauler ramps, and Forest River offers lightweight versions of the same model so you can tow the rig with a lighter-weight vehicle. Simply having so many options appeals to a great number of people. While it can get overwhelming if you’re new to RV shopping, most people who are looking to purchase a new RV want a large number of options.
Given everyone’s lifestyle and needs are different, it feels as if Forest River has made RVs for just about everyone. Not only does Forest River offer a wide variety of models and styles of RVs, but they also offer these makes and models at affordable prices.
Forest River is known for appealing to a wide number of budgets, making rigs that suit first-time buyers as well as seasoned pros. They want you to continue to invest in their company for the entire time you choose to purchase new RVs.
Range Of Dealers And Retail Locations
Another perk when it comes to positive reviews for Forest River is that they have dealers and retail locations available primarily in the Midwest and West Coast. However, Forest River RVs are popular enough that they are located Nationwide and in Canada as well. It is extremely difficult to tour an RV lot and not find at least one Forest River RV!
Given that there are so many different makes and models, many positive reviews for Forest River mention the floor plans and layouts. Customers love having options, and these options typically work well for them in terms of space, comfortability, and storage solutions.
What goes up must come down, and there is indeed a negative side to any purchase, including one from Forest River. What is the main complaint regarding this RV company? The majority of customers who buy a brand new Forest River RV have difficult interactions with the customer service line, warranty troubleshooting, and the longevity of their rigs in general.
Rapid Signs Of Wear And Tear
Something that could be said about Forest River is simply that you get what you pay for. The budget-friendly prices offered by this company typically go over well with consumers and customers. However, the long-term ownership of a Forest River RV may leave something to be desired in terms of the craftsmanship and durability of the vehicle.
Granted, very few recreational vehicles are designed to last more than a couple of decades, even with regular maintenance and care. However, many of the complaints about Forest River’s manufacturing happen within months after purchasing a new RV. That is typically considered inexcusable and an issue in the RV community, especially in conjunction with difficult customer service and warranty redemption programs.
Plus, many reviews mention service department issues in conjunction with warranty troubles. For example, despite having service centers and RV repair locations nationwide, certain models of Forest River RVs can only be serviced at certain locations. This often leads to an abundance of confusion and complications should your RV need a serious repair that is indeed covered by the warranty.
Many customers mention the fact that they purchased their Forest River RV in the Midwest and transported it back home, only to find out that their RV can only be serviced in the Midwest once more. This is an unfortunate part of the warranty and manufacturing process, especially when you consider how large of a company Forest River is. They should have the ability to accommodate more customers, no matter their location in the United States.
With all of this in mind, what else should you consider when looking at Forest River reviews and product information? Let’s discuss this now.
Rushed Manufacturing Process
There are a large number of negative reviews for Forest River that have come out in the last 2 to 3 years. The COVID-19 pandemic had a large effect on the RV industry, given travel was limited and many people resorted to RV camping as a source of entertainment. However, this also meant RV manufacturers couldn’t keep up with demand and were constantly trying to meet deadlines they were perhaps overbooked for.
This isn’t to excuse Forest River’s potentially haphazard and rushed manufacturing process. A company of this caliber should still be able to produce RVs at a rate that does not compromise their manufacturing quality. However, given the influx of demand and Forest River’s desire to meet such demands, it would only make sense that there are more negative reviews now than ever before.
The COVID-19 pandemic created far more RV owners than ever before. Many of these RV owners were first-time RV owners, which means they potentially have unrealistic expectations when it comes to purchasing and owning an RV. The amount of maintenance and potential repairs required for RVs can be overwhelming, especially for new customers expecting perfection.
With all of this in mind, let’s take a look at Forest River reviews in more depth. Let’s specifically talk about the build quality of these RVs, the customer service and warranty options provided by Forest River, and the layouts and design elements present in any new RV produced by Forest River.
Forest River RV Reviews: Build Quality
There are decidedly mixed reviews regarding the build quality of Forest River RVs. Many customers experience little to no issues in the quality of their RVs, while other customers experience nothing but issues with the construction and manufacturing of their new rig.
It’s safe to say the majority of customers who have issues with the build quality of a Forest River RV have very specific issues regarding one component or reoccurring problem. Many Forest River RV owners experience trouble with the slide-outs and mechanical components. Some of these include water pumps, air conditioners, refrigerators, and water inlets. Some reviews also mention the seals around the doors and windows being poor.
However, many reviews say the build quality of their RV is sound. Given Forest River constructs their RVs using Azdel materials and lightweight steel, they are built to last as long as everything has been correctly sealed and constructed in the first place! In terms of construction, Forest River states “random units from each of our brands are subjected to rigorous testing at our 20,000 square foot pre-delivery inspection (PDI) building on top of the inspections that all units undergo as they are being built.”
The inspection process sounds promising, but given the fact it’s random, it may not be as helpful as you think. Forest River goes on to say “Units selected to go through PDI are checked for issues in electrical, plumbing, LP system, function, cosmetic, codes and standards, rain bay, and other miscellaneous tests. This process provides our plants daily feedback to ensure every unit being built meets the high-quality standards.”
It seems as if Forest River has a lot to offer their customers in terms of build quality and inspections for new ownership. However, Forest River may need to work on their overall consistency when it comes to finalizing products before shipping them out the door.
Forest River RV Reviews: Customer Service and Warranties
Of all the negative reviews, the majority of them stem from issues regarding Forest River’s customer service and warranty programs. Not only do many customers mention having issues with scheduling repairs for their RVs, but they also mention the limited warranties often don’t cover what they believe they should.
Forest River recently updated their one-year comprehensive warranty based on the date of purchase of any new recreational vehicle. For example, any RV purchased on or before June 30, 2021, has a slightly different warranty compared to any RV purchased after this date. For the most part, this doesn’t affect options too much. However, it’s important to mention this for any new RV owners.
For the most part, Forest River covers any substantial defects that occur to any of their RVs for a full year. Substantial is, of course, subjective, and this is where many customers run into issues when trying to redeem parts of their warranty. Forest River also offers a 90-day repair or replacement policy on a variety of RV components, should they malfunction within this window of time.
However, this window of time is extremely brief, as is a year’s warranty when you consider the overall lifetime of your RV. Given the price points of the majority of Forest River’s travel trailers, fifth wheels, and motorhomes, this is generally what is expected from a warranty of this caliber. There are reviews mentioning Forest River having issues with returning phone calls and emails, including customer complaints and time-sensitive needs.
Given the influx of RV repairs and sales happening around the country, it’s to be expected that things take a bit longer than they perhaps have in the past. However, ignoring warranty requests and customer service complaints is inexcusable. It’s definitely something Forest River has room to improve on.
Forest River RV Reviews: Layouts and Design Elements
One of the overwhelmingly positive aspects of Forest River is their abundance of layouts and thoughtful design elements throughout their RV models. Many customer reviews mention a particular layout or design is why they decided to purchase a Forest River RV when compared to other popular brands.
As we’ve already mentioned, having so many different choices and layouts can be especially beneficial to an RV manufacturer and RV business. Every customer is looking for something different from an RV, depending on how often they plan on using it, where they plan on driving it, and how many people they hope to sleep inside.
Not only does Forest River produce enough RVs and layouts to suit everyone’s needs, but they also offer RVs in a variety of weights. For example, many travel trailers and fifth wheels have ultra-light construction options so they are easier for more vehicles to tow. Their motorhomes also come in gas and diesel fuel types so you can choose something that works best for you in the long run.
The design elements are also simplistic and easy to care for, including a wide variety of floor and countertop materials. You can get spacious bathrooms as well as compact wet baths. The sky’s the limit in terms of the layouts and design elements found in any one Forest River RV, and this doesn’t even include the abundance of optional features you can add after the initial purchase price of your new RV.
However, you can’t put a bow on all of the issues Forest River seems to have and expect their customers to be happy. Having an abundance of choice may seem like a good thing at first, but Forest River is notorious for introducing layouts and designs one year and promptly getting rid of them the following year if they don’t sell. This can lead to inconsistencies in their overall product manufacturing and is something to keep in mind.
6 Top Rated Forest River RVs
Your head may be swimming with all of these customer reviews and information surrounding Forest River RVs. However, what are some of Forest River’s top-rated RVs, and why? Let’s take a look at some of their top-selling models and selections, based on the style of rig. This way, you can get an even better idea of what they can offer you!
Forest River Travel Trailer: r-pod
- Aerodynamic and lightweight
- Easy to tow
- Variety of layouts
- Too compact for families
- Limited bathroom options
The unique construction and flexibility of the Forest River r-pod make it one of their top-selling travel trailers and RVs across the board. Depending on your region, there are some discrepancies in the number of floor plans and features. This is also likely affected by the number of RV repair shops Forest River has nationwide, but it essentially splits the r-pod into the r-pod Classic and the r-pod Hood River Edition.
No matter what, the r-pod is a lightweight and convenient travel trailer for many reasons. The rounded shape of this travel trailer makes it easy to tow and helps maximize fuel economy when driving. Plus, the r-pod is small enough to take off-road or wherever boondocking adventures take you. Speaking of boondocking, you can have an entire solar setup installed on your rig, along with a 30-gallon fresh water tank.
You should have no trouble towing this rig wherever your adventures take you, and this doesn’t even address all of the Interior features that the r-pod has. Given the r-pod ranges in length from 17′ to 25′ it’s a compact travel trailer. This may make you think it won’t feel particularly spacious and welcoming inside, but many customers mention being surprised at how homey and roomy this particular RV feels.
There are nearly a dozen r-pod floor plans available to choose from, with some including Murphy beds along with walk-around queen beds. You should have everything you need to enjoy a weekend away or even travel full-time in this RV. It’s budget-friendly, easy to tow, and a fantastic starter RV for just about any couple or family.
Forest River Fifth Wheel: Vengeance
- Huge toy hauler with impressive capacity
- Sleeps multiple people
- Attractive interior
- Difficult to tow
- Hard to store
It’s rare to find a fifth wheel that’s also comfortable and homey, but Forest River has accomplished both in the Vengeance. Not only is it possible to fit a variety of recreational toys inside this fifth wheel, but there’s also space to sleep 5 to 7 people! There are three different models of Forest River Vengeance RVs, the Vengeance Rogue, Vengeance Rogue Armored, and Vengeance Rogue SUT.
Ranging in length to over 40′ long, these rigs are mighty! There are very few small toy haulers on the market today, and the Vengeance isn’t one of them. However, that doesn’t mean that this rig doesn’t have a lot to offer, especially for those looking to bring the whole family on vacation, as well as plenty of gear.
Given the large size of this rig, it has a cargo-carrying capacity of nearly 4,000 pounds. This is enough to cover several ATVs, motorcycles, kayaks, and more. Plus, the interior design of this fifth-wheel toy hauler is particularly special and unique. The kitchen is complete with residential-size appliances and fixtures, and the overall interior feels light and bright.
There are many windows to help bring the outside in, and plenty of awnings and exterior features to keep everyone happy and smiling, no matter the location or weather situation.
Forest River Class A: Georgetown
- Homely interior
- Reasonable length so easier to drive
- Gas engine for easy fill-ups
- Limited layouts
The Forest River Georgetown Class A motorhome won RV News’ 2021 award for the best gas Class A RV on the road, and it’s easy to see why! While it only has three available floor plans, the Georgetown is ideal for a wide variety of RV customers who are seeking a Class A RV with a gas engine and a fair price point.
Ranging in length from 35 feet to 40 feet, this Class A RV is large and powerful. However, it still has a lot to offer even with its limited amount of layouts and shorter length compared to other Class A RVs. The interior design of this RV is spacious and sophisticated, making it appealing to a wide variety of RV consumers.
All the layouts of this Class A have an electric fireplace, residential fridges, and stoves, along with walk-around King beds with optional power lift capabilities. There are also washer-dryer preparation capabilities available in this rig for those considering it as a full-time living space. Plus, there’s a four-season package and an on-board generator so you can handle anything that comes your way.
Forest River Class C: Forester
- Variety of chassis options
- Numerous floorplans
- Easy to drive
- Lacks luxury edge
The Forester from Forest River is their top-selling Class C model, likely because it comes in so many different chassis options. You have the option of choosing from a classic Ford Chassis, a classic Chevy Chassis, a Ford Transit chassis, and a Mercedes-Benz chassis. The Mercedes-Benz chassis also comes with a diesel engine, while the majority of these are gas engines.
There are over 10 available floor plans for the Forester, across all chassis options. Depending on the chassis you prefer, there may be slightly fewer or more floorplans available. However, all of them are unique and spacious, with plenty of storage options and sleeping solutions. Plus, this Class C is a reasonable size, ranging from 23 to 32 feet in length, making it easier to drive than other RV options.
Depending on the interior design you’re looking for, there are layouts with walk-around queen beds, bunk beds for the kiddos, and residential kitchens so you can cook to your heart’s content. The bathrooms are also flexible in terms of layout, with some separate toilet and shower combinations so the sink is still accessible to the whole family.
If you’re purchasing a Class C RV for the first time, you can’t go wrong with the Forester from Forest River. There are enough layouts to keep things interesting, and plenty of safety features to keep this rig easy to drive. Plus, there are many different interior design choices available to make, as well as add-on features such as solar panels and additional batteries.
Forest River Toy Hauler: XLR
- Abundance of floorplans
- Multiple add-on packages
- Lightweight frame
- Easy for final cost to increase with add-ons
- Longer lengths are difficult to tow
The XLR comes in a larger travel trailer style, a fifth wheel trailer style, as well as an Ultra Lite toy hauler for your lower capacity tow vehicles. Today, we will focus on the XLR Hyperlite since it is a more compact toy hauler than the Vengeance, and it has a variety of floor plans to suit many different people. Let’s talk about it in detail now.
This compact toy hauler won RV News’ 2021 award for best travel trailer toy hauler of the year, plus the best overall award in 2020. Not only does it come in 6 possible floor plans. Each one has a sturdy and heavy-duty ramp for transporting your toys in and out of the rig.
This particular travel trailer weighs less than 9,000 pounds when empty, and has a cargo-carrying capacity ranging from 1,000 to just shy of 5,000 pounds, depending on the floor plan. This means that you have an ample amount of carrying capacity for your toys and goods, all on a compact frame. This travel trailer ranges in length from 29 feet to 38 feet!
You can get different packages added to the purchase price of this particular toy hauler. Some of these packages include an Exterior package, a chassis package, a garage package, a technology package, and more. While these will add to the ultimate cost of your new RV, the additional features that each one of these holds can make or break your dream rig.
Honorable Mention: Ibex
- Off-grid and off-road features
- Multiple floorplan options
- Award-winning travel trailer
- Interior design lacks personality
- Too small for large families or travel groups
Despite this travel trailer being relatively new on the scene, the Ibex is one of Forest River’s top models currently. It won RV Pro’s award for best debut in 2021 and made it onto RV News’ top 10 list of RVs in 2021. With 8 floor plans and towing capacity limits in mind, it’s no wonder that the Ibex is so special. Let’s talk more about it in detail now.
One of the cool features of the Ibex is that some floor plans are lighter weight than others. Certain floor plans are 1 foot wider than the others, giving you more interior living space and breathing room. Plus, a select few floor plans also feature toy hauler ramps so that you can easily move your gear in and out of your RV.
Speaking of interior living space, the interior design of the Ibex isn’t particularly stunning. However, everything is easy to clean and access, with hardwood cabinetry and laminate flooring. You can find a floor plan with a pull-out sofa, a walk-around queen bed, and even a living room with an electric fireplace.
One of the coolest things about this particular rig is that it has a raised chassis, solar panels included for boondocking, and a four-season installation package. This rig is perfect for 4 season use, as well as multiple road conditions scenarios. It’s definitely something to consider if you plan on camping anywhere off-grid or potentially unmaintained.
List Of Forest River Travel Trailers
There are currently 45 travel trailer models produced by Forest River. They come in a variety of lengths and styles, including levels of luxury and hyper-lite capabilities. They are, as follows:
- Alpha Wolf: 27ft – 37ft
- Aurora: 23ft – 38ft
- Cherokee: 28ft – 40ft
- Cherokee Black Label: 29ft – 42ft
- Cherokee Grey Wolf: 24ft – 33ft
- Cherokee Wolf Pack: 29ft – 45ft
- Cherokee Wolf Pack Gold Series: 29ft – 33ft
- Cherokee Wolf Pup: 18ft – 31ft
- Evo: 23ft – 36ft
- Flagstaff Classic: 29ft – 36ft
- Flagstaff E-Pro: 15ft – 21ft
- Flagstaff Micro Lite: 22ft – 26ft
- Flagstaff Shamrock: 21ft – 25ft
- Flagstaff Super Lite: 30ft – 35ft
- Grand Surveyor: 30ft – 32ft
- Ibex: 24ft – 30ft
- Independence Trail: 20ft – 32ft
- No Boundaries: 13ft – 24ft
- Ozark: 20ft – 32ft
- Rockwood Geo Pro: 16ft – 21ft
- Rockwood Mini Lite: 22ft – 26ft
- Rockwood Roo: 21ft – 25ft
- Rockwood Signature: 30ft – 37ft
- Rockwood Ultra Lite: 30ft – 35ft
- r-pod: 17ft – 25ft
- Salem: 26ft – 38ft
- Salem Cruise Lite: 23ft – 33ft
- Salem FSX: 21ft – 36ft
- Salem Hemisphere: 24ft – 39ft
- Sandstorm: 25ft – 36ft
- Shockwave: 25ft – 36ft
- Stealth: 25ft – 35ft
- Surveyor Legend: 24ft – 38ft
- Vengeance Rogue: 31ft – 39ft
- Vengeance Rogue SUT: 27ft – 40ft
- Vibe: 21ft – 35ft
- Viking: 16ft – 32ft
- Wildcat: 22ft – 37ft
- Wildwood: 26 ft – 38ft
- Wildwood FSX: 21ft – 36ft
- Wildwood Heritage Glen: 24ft – 39ft
- Wildwood X-Lite: 23ft – 33ft
- Work and Play: 27ft – 36ft
- XLR Boost: 27ft – 45ft
- XLR Hyperlite: 32ft – 39ft
List Of Forest River Fifth Wheels
Forest River currently manufactures 29 fifth-wheel models in a variety of lengths and styles, including toy haulers. Some models overlap with travel trailer models, as they offer towable rigs in both hitch styles. These fifth-wheel models include:
- Arctic Wolf: 29ft – 44ft
- Cardinal: 35ft – 43ft
- Cardinal Luxury: 36ft – 43ft
- Cardinal Red: 35ft – 42ft
- Cedar Creek: 37ft – 43ft
- Cedar Creek Experience: 35ft – 39ft
- Cherokee Black Label: 30ft – 43ft
- Cherokee Wolf Pack: 30ft – 45ft
- Flagstaff Classic: 29ft – 37ft
- Impression: 29ft – 41ft
- RIVERSTONE: 41ft – 45ft
- Riverstone Reverse Series: 36ft – 42ft
- Rockwood Signature: 29ft – 37ft
- Sabre: 35ft – 43ft
- Salem Hemisphere: 34ft – 44ft
- Sandpiper: 36ft – 43ft
- Sandstorm: 28ft – 38ft
- Shockwave: 28ft – 38ft
- Sierra: 36ft – 44ft
- Sierra Luxury: 43ft – 44ft
- Stealth: 28ft – 38ft
- Vengeance Rogue Armored: 43ft – 45ft
- Vengeance Rogue SUT: 27ft – 40ft
- Wildcat: 32ft – 44ft
- Wildcat One: 34ft – 42ft
- Wildwood Heritage Glen: 34ft – 44ft
- XLR Boost: 27ft – 45ft
- XLR Nitro: 35ft – 45ft
List Of Forest River Motorhomes
There are currently 17 motorhomes under the Forest River name. However, the number of motorhomes that Forest River has a hand in manufacturing only increases when you consider their other companies. The motorhomes under the Forest River name include the following models:
- Berkshire XL
- Berkshire XLT
- Forester Classic
- Forester LE
- Forester MBS
- Forester TS
- Georgetown 3 Series GT3
- Georgetown 5 Series GT5
- Georgetown 7 Series GT7
- Sunseeker Classic
- Sunseeker LE
- Sunseeker MBS
- Sunseeker TS
Forest River RV Review: Are Forest River RVs Worth It?
So, the big question you’ve likely been waiting for us to answer is; Are Forest River RVs worth it? This is a tricky question to respond to as it really comes down to personal preference. Although the brand has received some negative reviews in the last few years, there are plenty of customers who are happy with their Forest River rigs even years after their initial purchase.
Forest River dedicate themselves to creating a broad range of RVs from large Class As to compact travel trailers. They aim to manufacture rigs suitable for every type of traveler, but sometimes their rigs lack the quality other brands never seem to miss.
For affordable, versatile RVs, it’s hard to match the diversity of Forest River. As a full-timer, I would spend happy days and nights in one of these rigs and know I’d be safe, secure, and comfortable.
Carrying out necessary maintenance throughout an RV’s life is vital to keep it in the best condition possible, so don’t forget to winterize for colder months and look after your camper in hot weather too!
Now you know what customers and RV enthusiasts have to say about Forest River, you should be feeling confident about your decision regarding this company. No matter what you decide, Forest River has a lot to offer in the RV world, and their commitment to getting people outside is one to be proud of!