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2012 Entegra Anthem - Road Test and Review

Raising The Proverbial Bar on the Class-A Motorhome
Article Date: September, 2011


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Every now and then a motorhome comes along that simply stands out from the rest. The Entegra Anthem is one of those coaches, and it's being offered by Jayco's high-end Class-A motorhome division.

Resurrected from the remains of the Travel Supreme, Entegra Coach further improves upon a proven quality product. Entegra produces four models of Class-A motorhomes, beginning with the Insignia and moving up through the Aspire, Anthem, and Cornerstone models. We decided to check out the popular Entegra Anthem 42DL.

Construction Overview

Its 43-foot floor plan is built on Spartan's widely accepted Mountain Master GT chassis. The Mountain Master GT as used in the Anthem is a tag axle chassis with a 296-inch wheelbase and a side-mounted radiator. A 450hp Cummins ISL engine produces 1,250 lb-ft of torque, which is more than enough to move this coach down the road with ease. It passes the power to the rear drive axle via an Allison 3000 automatic transmission. The Anthem 42DL has a gross vehicle weight rating of 44,600 pounds, and stopping the coach is accomplished with front disc and rear drum air brakes. A two-speed engine compression brake provides additional stopping power and speed control on downgrades. Independent front suspension provides a smooth and stable ride. Cargo-carrying capacity is a generous 7,336 pounds.

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Stable Ride

The Mountain Master GT is a popular chassis for many quality diesel pushers, but Entegra takes it a bit further and adds some additional tweaks to provide an even more stable, smoother and quieter ride. Rough or uneven roads typically twist and rack the frame and motorhome superstructure causing those squeaks and rattles that get worse over time.

Entegra adds both vertical and horizontal X bracing to the chassis frame rails to stiffen it so that the suspension will handle the bumps, rather than allowing the frame or superstructure to twist. Further improvements are made by installing a steel hoop, similar to a roll bar, at the front of the coach to minimize any flex in the windshield area and provide an additional level of safety in the cockpit.

Hydraulic leveling jacks made by Equalizer Systems are powered in both directions. Rather than use springs to retract them, the system utilizes two-way hydraulics to power them back into place. This results in a more positive retraction and faster return times and also eliminates the clanging noise of the springs common to one way hydraulic jacks. Each of the four slide-outs are powered by a proprietary gear drive system that is the smoothest and quietest we've seen.

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Diagonal cross bracing adds rigidity to the chassis, minimizing chassis flex.

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An overhead support hoop over the cab area provides additional strength and safety.

Reducing Road Noise

All Entegra Coaches feature a 2x4 wooden floor support structure over the top of the typical steel framed substructure. Wood acts as a buffer to deaden any road noise or vibrations. It also provides more room for insulation and gives the Entegra Coach an industry leading R-33 insulation value. An in-floor hydronic heating loop ensures that the polished ceramic floor tiles remain toasty warm in cold climates. Extensive insulation is also found in the front and rear caps, which is not the normal practice in the industry.

Entegra feels confident enough in the quality of its product that it has raised the bar on customer support and includes a two-year bumper-to-bumper warranty plus a three-year platinum-level roadside assistance plan with every coach.

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Entegra's Hung Wall sidewalls offer the chance for maximum insulation.

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An extensive supply of insulation includes the front and rear caps.

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Entegra's wooden floor allows for a hydronic floor heating loop as well as enough insulation to achieve an R-33 value.

Exterior

The Anthem is a very attractive coach. Our test unit was painted in the luxurious Tuscan Sun paint scheme. The Anthem receives three coats of urethane clear for a total of 5 to 6 mm of clear coat, giving it an attractive depth to its finish. All Entegra Coaches are painted at Precision Painting in nearby Bremen, Indiana. They are known for their show quality paint finishes. An unobstructed view out the expansive one-piece windshield is complemented by low mounted chrome mirrors. These provide the optimum viewing angle, while eliminating blind spots caused by higher mounted mirrors. Large mono-blade windshield wipers are fitted to fully enclosed wiper arms that shield the windshield washer hoses from the sun's devastating UV rays. Powerful Xenon headlamps provide better than average illumination for night driving.


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