Triple E Commander 3712FGB (35-6)
By Norm Rosen
aboard the 2006 Triple E Commander Class A, you slide into a
six-way power Ultra Leather Captain’s chair, while your
navigator slips into the matching (but not power adjustable)
passenger seat. The large windshield and heated remote control
mirrors offer a vista that lets you take in all the traffic
around you, as well as the full splendor of the scenery. Power
sun visors (part of the option package) let you adjust the shade
as you drive.
E’s Commander delivers high-level comfort and
the kind of
luxury that’s desirable in a first-rate family
Our test coach was prepared by Owasco RV in Pickering, Ontario,
a multi-line dealership a few minutes east of Toronto.
The motorhome, built on the highly rated Workhorse W24 chassis,
and powered by the GMC 8.1 L Vortec gas engine, is a smooth
and powerful road machine, combining a good balance of ride
comfort and handling characteristics for an RV of this size.
With a 242-inch wheelbase and rear airbag suspension, the coach
absorbs most of the road irregularities with ease, yet retains
a tight enough turning radius.
You won’t be doing figure eights in a small parking lot,
but any campground maneuvers can be accomplished with relative
ease, thanks in part to the rearview monitor system, with colour
LCD panel mounted in the dash.
Our test model was equipped with the optional Customer Value
Package, including front airbag assist suspension, driver and
passenger power sun visor, skylights and thermostatically controlled
ceiling fan in the living area, chrome cockpit ventilating fans,
DVD/VCR combo, CB antenna, and mattress upgrade.
The Commander is very well built, with vacuum bonded aluminum
framed insulated sidewall and roof, fiberglass exterior, and
vacuum bonded steel framed floor, with undercoating to protect
against dust and moisture and reduce stone and road noise. The
use of a half-inch thermal break insulation layer, beyond the
standard one-inch Styrofoam block insulation, separates the
climate-controlled interior from the outside elements. This
thermal break material in the sidewall and roof, and the thermal
pane windows, are most appropriate for the Canadian climate
and contribute to your comfort at the opposite end of the climate
As a Canadian built RV, the Triple E Commander is engineered
to withstand Canadian winters. Steel enclosed, fibreglass insulated
and heated fresh water and holding tanks ensure extreme cold
climate performance for your plumbing system. The motorhome’s
ducted furnace keeps the tanks warm while parked, and the rear
auxiliary automotive heater warms the tank compartments while
Triple E lived up to expectations with the Rocky Mountain/Santa
Fe décor treatment being a fine example of understated
elegance. We were particularly impressed with the optional solid-wood
wall-mount table with extra leaf. The golden maple cabinetry
is an elegant upgrade from the standard raised oak finish, bringing
an opulent air to the overall décor.
Entertaining in the Commander will be a pleasure with the large
10 cubic-foot Dometic fridge, complete with icemaker, and a
fully equipped galley. You can relax and enjoy the DHS mobile
theatre system, or pipe music throughout the unit from the 10
stack CD changer.
Triple E’s exclusive Climate Guard system provides year
round climate controlled comfort for passengers. During the
warm weather, you will appreciate the optional dual ducted 13,500
BTU roof air conditioners, which have heat strips to handle
the chilly evenings. When the mercury takes a serious dip, the
twin 25,000 BTU furnaces keep the unit warm and comfy. For heating
while you travel, the Commander features a rear auxiliary automotive
heater with electric water valve, that channels heated water
to the fresh water and holding tank compartment to avoid freezing.
We’ve used this system in previous road tests, and it
provides warmth for the coach while you drive, without running
the LP gas furnace system.
Keeping the Commander shipshape is easy thanks to the standard
central vacuum, which has an outlet in the baggage compartment
for added convenience.
Cargo capacity of the Commander is quite ample, with the galley
and living area slides equipped with the EEE-Z Reach baggage
boxes – you won’t bump your head trying to get at
The baggage compartments slide out with the rest of the section.
All baggage compartments are lined and lit, and the aluminum
compartment doors are fitted with gas struts and “slam”
latches – just close the door firmly and it latches with
a positive “thunk”.
At The Campground
Setting up in a campsite is a breeze, with all of the hookups
located on the driver’s side of the coach. The HWH hydraulic
leveling jack system has touch pad control, and LED’s
illuminate to show you when all four corners of the vehicle
have been adjusted and locked in. Once the unit is stabilized,
you can extend your slides, and connect the electric, water,
sewer, and cable TV hookups, in that order.
Three slide-outs make the 3712FGB Commander a particularly attractive
model within the Triple E lineup. The HWH Hydraulic living area
flush-floor slide is very impressive, operating with ease at
the touch of a button, without the usual step down from the
slide section to the floor of the unit. The galley slide is
also hydraulic, but the smaller rear bedroom slide is an electric
unit, appropriate to the size and load.
Overall, this Class A motorhome provides a high level of comfort
and a degree of luxury that is most desirable in a family vacation
vehicle. Considering the space available, the ease of traveling
long distances, the full range of entertainment options, and
the convenience of gourmet caliber dining facilities, this unit
is a luxury hotel suite on wheels – and even at today’s
fuel prices, traveling in a Class A motorhome is a real bargain.
Set the cruise control at the speed limit, and you can expect
eight to 10 miles-per-gallon on reasonably flat terrain…not
bad when you consider that a modern family size SUV would be
hard pressed to achieve twice the fuel efficiency, and motel
rooms for the family are running at double the rate of the nicer
There’s one very important benefit of traveling in a coach
like the Commander. Triple E, in partnership with Coach Net,
provides access to an extensive support system providing complete
and fully-paid roadside assistance, emergency road service,
and warranty support benefits throughout Canada and the United
States. This Coach Net coverage is provided free of charge for
the first year, and is available at reasonable rates for subsequent
years. Triple E recreational vehicles carry a two-year limited
warranty on structure and most major components.
GVWR: 24,000 lbs. Unloaded
Vehicle Weight: 20,117 lbs.
Chassis: Workhorse W24
Water tank: 88 gal.
Water heater: 10 gal
Black tank: 42 gal.
Grey tank: 39 gal.
Fuel capacity: 75 gal.
Propane: 25.3 gal.
Price as tested: $186,995
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