Airstream unveils new concept caravan

Airstream concept travel trailer

Airstream, maker of the iconic riveted aluminium caravan, as unveiled a concept caravan developed in partnership with legendary design firm Studio F. A. Porsche.

The Studio F. A. Porsche team was charged with envisioning a next-generation Airstream trailer that incorporated elements from the design playbooks of both brands.

The concept design integrates numerous advances in aerodynamics, including a new rear shape that is intended to improve air flow while in motion, a flush underside with reduced drag-creating projections, the first-ever lowering suspension in an Airstream travel trailer design, and the first insulated pop-up roof in Airstream’s history.

Essential systems are incorporated inside the concept’s chassis and interior, resulting in a sleek exterior that is intended to reduce protrusions that create aerodynamic drag.

The ducted air conditioning, a prominent feature of many RV rooftops, is located above the concept’s floor.

Several systems are tucked inside the 10-inch-deep space below the floor, including the hot water and heating components, spare wheel, holding tanks, and the lithium battery.

As conceived, this small-footprint concept travel trailer is intended to have improved aerodynamic characteristics from other Airstream travel trailers currently in production.

The improved aerodynamic performance is a result of the low ride height made possible by the pop-up roof design, lowering suspension, fewer rooftop protrusions, a smaller frontal area as compared to other Airstream travel trailers currently in production, and lighter weight from composite materials like carbon fiber.

One intended result of these design modifications is a better towing experience optimized for towing with electric vehicles (EVs).

“Innovation is the art of discovering the possible,” said Airstream President and CEO Bob Wheeler. “Our collaboration with Studio F. A. Porsche brought talented new eyes and minds to our never-ending process of improving the Airstream experience. It’s a fresh design approach aimed at reaching a broader, more diverse base of potential customers.”

The concept travel trailer features a floor plan unlike other Airstream units, including a rear seating area that transforms from dining to working to relaxing space.

The versatile seating area quickly converts from dinette seating to a large 82” x 61” sleeping area. Reclining seat options allow owners to enjoy the views through the open hatch.

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“Our design team has long wanted to partner with Airstream,” said Roland Heiler, Managing Director of Studio F. A. Porsche and Chief Design Officer of the Porsche Lifestyle Group.

“More than 20 years ago, when my family lived in Southern California, we owned a 1964 Airstream Overlander.

“That’s when I met Bob Wheeler for the first time at a vintage trailer show in Newport Beach.

“For me Airstream has always been an iconic brand that has thrived by evolving its products while remaining true to its design DNA – an approach very similar to the philosophy of Studio F. A. Porsche.

“So, it is not difficult to imagine that we were more than excited when the idea to develop a new iteration of Airstream’s travel trailers finally became reality.”

The concept will be showcased at Porsche’s SXSW exhibit where Airstream and Porsche Lifestyle Group executives will unveil a 1/3 scale model of the trailer and a Porsche Macan tow vehicle.

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