As far as fuel economy, our run from Santa Barbara to Mammoth Lakes, California, was about 370 miles, and we did the entire trip on a single tank of fuel. According to our vehicle's trip computer, we averaged 16.8 mpg at an average speed of 58 mph. Those mpg numbers may not sound impressive, but they're just about double the next closest motorhome mpg numbers we've ever seen.

Some hefty elevation changes on the drive up moved us from about 100 feet above sea level to close to 7000 at our snowed-in campsite. The V-6 turbodiesel delivered dramatic and impressive fuel economy numbers on the trip home, running downhill from the mountaintops back to Los Angeles. In that instance, we got over 21 mpg, which we helped by being gentle on the throttle. Even with the more aerodynamic shape of the Via, there is still plenty of flat-faced siding to make for an exciting ride if you encounter sidewinds or fast-moving big-rigs. With a 26-gallon fuel tank, the Via has an impressive range of over 400 miles; remember, though, the generator taps fuel from the main diesel tank, so you have to factor that in as well. The furnace is powered by propane (LP).

Beyond the driving ease and fuel economy, another feature we liked was the IntelliSense communication center, which allowed us to check tank levels, battery charge, and choose the mode of power for the appliances. We appreciate having as much information about fluid and power levels as possible, especially in an environment that can go bad quickly.

Also, our Via was equipped with a rear- and side-mounted camera system that offered night vision for easier and safer lane changes and back-country night driving. The option is about $5000, but you'd be surprised how quickly you begin to rely on it. Look for it to make it to more large pickups and SUV in the years to come. Pricing for our Via 25Q model is a bit on the high side, with a base of $130,000, exclusive of $12,000 in options. The saving grace for a vehicle like this at a larger dealership nowadays is that you're likely to be treated like royalty and not have to pay anywhere near full cost.

In fact, this 2010 model was sale priced for $118,000. And our guess is the dealership would've been willing to negotiate from there.