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-   -   M380 Bluebird or Clone? (https://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11179)

philipswanson 09-03-2011 08:23 PM

M380 Bluebird or Clone?
As I look at Bluebird Wonderlodge coaches, it appears to me that the M380 does not measure up as a true Bluebird. It appears to have a non Bluebird chassis and looks more like a regular run of the mill diesel pusher than a converted Bluebird bus. Given the change of owners and the economic problems the company faced, it appears to me that they put out the M380 at a cheaper production price to increase profits. Am I wrong? The LX and the LXi appear to be true Bluebird conversions but the M380 was obviously different. Inferior, it would appear so. What do you think?

fxdwg 09-03-2011 08:24 PM

While it was a less expensive bird, it's still leaps and bounds above most everything else.

philipswanson 09-03-2011 09:25 PM

Yes, but is it built on a genuine Bluebird chassis or some other contracted supplier's?

Joatha 09-03-2011 09:35 PM

M380 is on a genuine custom-designed and built Bluebird chassis. The only major difference in construction from previous Birds is the use of an aluminum skin. Even the single axle is not unique.

The only coach that wasn't built on a Bluebird chassis was the 94-97 BMC's - which used a Spartan chassis.

fxdwg 09-03-2011 09:41 PM

The real question is does it matter? Both chassis are more than capable of doing the job. Which one do you like better? There are fulltimers in both coaches. Both are doing just fine. The 380, being a little smaller sacrifices some room for maneuverability. But you can also get it into a WHOLE bunch more places than a 42/43/45 footer. What do you intend to do with the coach? Travel to the state parks and truly try to see the country in it, or park someplace and use your toad for day trips in the local area? The former, you'd be better off with the 380. The latter, either will do the job. Do you plan on 100,000 miles a year? Then chose the v92/S60. Otherwise, pick the coach you like best.

Dan & Cindy 09-03-2011 09:48 PM

M380 is a real Bluebird
2 Attachment(s)
Phil, I disagree that the M380 is an inferior Bluebird Wanderlodge. The M380 was engineered and manufactured by the same folks who had done the earlier Bluebirds. It has the same components, same level of craftsmanship, same quality and premium features of the earlier Birds.

Is it different? You bet. The most notable difference is that it is skined with aluminum instead of steel. That innovation, combined with a Cummins ISL, gives the M380 one of the highest HP to weight ratios of all BB ever produced. Combine that with the ArvinMeritor front and rear suspension gives the M380 arguably the best ride of all MH and performance that feels like a sports car.

When the M380 was released, it was intended to allow BB compete in a larger market where MSRP was around $400K, instead of the $1mm market where only a relatively small number of coaches were sold each year. Those first few M380's like most other first production models did have some issues that were corrected, but nothing as severe as the M450 weight issues.

Phil you are entitled to have your own opinion and it is OK if it is different from mine cause I know that I am biased. I'll attach a couple of pieces of sales propaganda to try and change your mind.

Randy Dupree 09-03-2011 09:59 PM

Independent front suspension.
Disc brakes front and back
Cummins engine.
8-9 MPG.
whats not to like?

AC7880 09-03-2011 11:29 PM

I wish I had the same wheel cut/turning radius, IFS, and disk brakes on my BMC. I'm not trading coaches, but those features would sure be nice.

davidmbrady 09-03-2011 11:32 PM

I much prefer a stick axle.

Joatha 09-03-2011 11:53 PM


Originally Posted by Randy Dupree (Post 125948)
Independent front suspension.
Disc brakes front and back
Cummins engine.
8-9 MPG.
whats not to like?

The only thing I don't like is that I can't afford one!!

Otherwise, I would LOVE to have one. That would be my absolute first choice for what I would use one for.

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