All the Comforts: 1974 GMC Eleganza

Jeff LaveryBy Jeff Lavery

These GMC Eleganza motorhomes have been popping up with some regularity on various social media feeds, and examples like this 1974 model provide compelling evidence as to why a life on the road may be one worth having. Featuring all of the comforts of home wrapped in a deliciously period-appropriate wrapper, this Eleganza here on eBay is one of the best we’ve seen – but carries an impressive $18K price tag. 

The “Bee Camping” motif isn’t explained, but it seems like the kind of thing a dealer would apply to create the impression of this Eleganza being a special edition. No matter, as the rust-free body and sharp paint is far more relevant than some cheesy 70s graphics. Also note the full roll-out awning, and attachable screen porch shown in other photos in the listing. The best campers have options for expanding their footprint once parked, but you’ll also want to spend plenty of time inside.

Seating fabrics and covers are downright groovy, but so is the overall condition of the interior. The only funk you’ll find in here is whatever the previous owner has left in the eight-track, as the clean confines inspire confidence that years of mysterious odors won’t be a problem for its next inhabitants. There’s plenty of sleeping and sitting space based on the photos, along with cooking and cleaning areas and storage cubbies. A working generator and outboard motor are also included.

No engine shots are provided but power comes from an Oldsmobile 455 with just over 70,000 original miles. That should hum along nicely ensuring your passengers can sleep or play cards in peace. As I ramp up plans to convert my ’81 Toyota HiAce project into a camper van, the Eleganza is an inspiration for those of us who wish to make our vehicles part of our extended vacations and cross-country journeys. It’s been re-listed a few times now, which may convince the current owner to hold onto this survivor R/V for a few more years.

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Comments

  1. whippeteer

    I certainly hope the body has no rust. The lower section is fiberglas and the upper section is aluminum.

    7+
  2. ROTAG999

    I like the Coke a Cola version ever seen one ? I go by one of these parked under some evergreen trees so it is pretty green the guy is a packrat has about 10 vehicles mostly yard art but does have a nice black Hummer 2.

    1+
  3. Mountainwoodie

    The Seventies were the nadir of design.from cars to fabrics to di-noc to polyester. All that brown and yellow…….Shudder……Thank the gods I spent the seventies pretending it was still the sixties.

    2+
    • Joe Howell

      Me too I think, but I can’t remember for sure 🙂

      4+
  4. Nathan Avots-Smith Staff

    No need to even drive this baby because that interior is A TRIP!

    …I’ll see myself out.

    10+
  5. Rob

    Every time I see one of these I think of Stripes.

    10+
    • George

      das da fack Jack!

      0
  6. Howard A Member

    For the time, these were the nicest motor homes out there. It still is a wonderful unit, rides nice, plenty of power ( at a cost, however) comfy. Little pricey, but honestly, I’d take this over some of the modern monstrosities gracing our campgrounds these days. And if all else fails, there’s this ( catch the e.t.)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlzLasccanU

    5+
    • whippeteer

      For the time, and even today, the fuel mileage is not bad. About 10 mpg on the road and 12 if you keep your foot out of it.

      1+
  7. Chris Kennedy

    Always have liked these! To me, they have a timeless style!

    3+
  8. Bob Hess

    Have seen several of these with total rebuilds and upgrading. They can be turned into a thing of beauty. Years ago we tried to hunt a good one down to rebuild and tow trailers with but the total cost of refurbishing was pretty high. Also, at least half of them had serious rust in the front 1/4 of the frame where the suspension mounts were.

    0
  9. jw454

    If I were looking for one of these, the interior is what I’d want it to look like. I don’t understand the complaint that it looks bad… “I want a vehicle from the 1970s but, I don’t want it to look like it’s from the 1970s”. What?!!
    Things are what they are. In the 1970s, most people wore polyester clothes with big flowers on them, interiors looked like this, and, appliances were avocado green, harvest gold, and sunflower yellow.
    This is how it was. I like it.

    6+
  10. Big Mike

    I saw this Airstream in Florida last fall while on vacation. I stopped and talked the owner, very friendly said it was a 1970 that he bought and that he and his Wife still drive it around and use it. This guy had to be in his 70’s at least but he said they would drive up the coast road and find a place and stay for a few days then move to some place else. That is what I want to do when I retire.

    2+
    • ROTAG999

      Some-buddy used the Ugly stick already on this work of ? lol

      0
  11. sparkster

    I often wonder how one of these would do with a Duramax diesel in it. Granted I no idea how’d you mate the front trans axle up to a duramax. My father when down to the GMC dealer in 74′ with checkbook in hand to buy a 26 footer. He had concerns with a heavy vehicle having front wheel drive. As he said motorhomes carry most of their weight over the rear wheels. Going up a steep hill in the snow or ice was going to be a challenge

    0
  12. ROTAG999
    0
  13. Rick

    Why is there an outboard attached to the rear bumper??

    0
  14. DrinkinGasoline

    I’ve owned the shortened version for many years and it has real patina ! 🙂

    4+
  15. Peter k

    UTAWMF. Let it Rest In Peace in somebody else’s driveway.

    0
  16. CMARV

    If it’s as clean underneath as it is on top it is well worth the price . If I had the indoor storage for it I would be on my way to see it .

    1+

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