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Old 11-24-2015, 07:58 AM   #15
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[QUOTE=mandolindave;1714863]The base camp was a camper/utility trailer. It wasn't great at either. It seems that the younger crowd that Airstream was targeting, couldn't afford it. Most of the older crowd, didn't need or want it.


As a Basecamp owner, I totally agree with the above description of the Basecamp as a camper/utility trailer -- with no heat, hot water, bathroom, or waste tanks it is not what anyone would call a travel trailer. (For what it is worth, we absolutely love ours as a camper!)

What killed it was economics. With options the price was barely less than a much better equipped 16' Bambi, and it was announced right at the start of the Great Recession.

If they can get the features/price balance right (which will not be easy, especially using aluminum) they might have a winner that will attract the younger market they seek.
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Old 11-24-2015, 07:59 AM   #16
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Agreed

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Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
That wouldn't be such a bad thing, IMHO. I've owned a Casita 17 for several years also, and on the average I've had a lot less trouble with it than I have with my Airstreams. Of course, it's almost the epitome of simple.
I was actually looking for a Scamp, but my daughter ( about 9 years old at the time ) spotted my Argosy in a used car lot. After repairs and restoration, I could have bought two brand new Scamps.

I would still have a Scamp (if it had the shower option ) For LOOOOONG road trips and over nighters.

I think an Airstream teardrop would be cool. But for me, just van camping would be a better cheaper option. The Basecamp might have turned the Suits against that idea.

I have a tricked out Argosy. The idea of reintroducing a stripped down, economy Argosy leaves me cold. A painted REAL Airstream would be awesome…..FOR ME
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Old 11-24-2015, 08:08 AM   #17
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In an effort to bring down the average age of buyers for the elegant but expensive travel trailers and vans, Wheeler said, the company will shortly unveil a new product that’s smaller, sportier, easier to operate and cheaper.

With that statement being made, i'm think the new offering will not eat into the existing customer base (50-60 years of age). Looks like the same philosophy some of the higher end car manufacturers have. Such companies like Porsche offered a less expensive model that did not appeal to their base market but a more youthful market that could not afford the higher end product.This move probably comes from the parent company (Thor).

I find two distinctions among many that stand out with the Airstream line, Shiny and rounded. Wonder if they will keep either one of those characteristics in the new offering. I would think so in order to have the AS appeal.
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Old 11-24-2015, 08:53 AM   #18
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Over the years, I've had a number of classic and collector cars dating back to 1929. During that time, I've spent a fortune restoring and/or maintaining them. I chuckle every time I read a post about how an AS that's fifty or sixty years old is still around and that why the AS is an icon and far better than an SOB. I still have a couple of Model A's and like an old AS, they were restored for serious money, much like an old AS. In the eighties, a company introduced a a Model A like car with Ford's blessing. It used Pinto running gear and a fiberglass body. How many Shay's do you see out on the road today?

My point is simply that Thor will dilute the AS market with a lesser trailer depending on the AS reputation as a sales driver. BTW, how many of you remember the Cadillac Cimmaron based on the Chevy Nova or the Lincoln Versailles based on a Granada?

I rest my case.
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Old 11-24-2015, 09:19 AM   #19
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I'm wondering if adhesives have come along to the point that an aluminum skin can be built without the labor intensive rivets. Allowing a simpler to build, less expensive airstream to still be shiny and curvatious.

Lots of new cars now combine a mix of materials to be used to advantage with new adhesives bonding them together.

Why not trailers?

Cheers Richard
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Old 11-24-2015, 09:24 AM   #20
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Or, how about a fiberglass body painted silver?
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Old 11-24-2015, 09:31 AM   #21
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Or, how about a fiberglass body painted silver?
I was thinking the same thing, but also would think for cost reasons it would be better to not paint the gelcoat. However, I know there's silver gelcoat, and the Airstream shape would be fairly easy to mold, like the Casita and other fiberglass trailers.
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:00 AM   #22
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What are the major costs of building the typical Airstream? I would think the aluminum panels and the assembly of them into a shell then then assembly of the interior panels after the installation of insulation and wiring.

I can't see Airstream building a white box and slapping on a Airstream decal.

Airstream could produce a fiberglass shell trailer like Casita and Oliver. It would be priced in between the Casita and Oliver but would probably weigh closer to the Oliver. Hopefully, Airstream would make something different as the Oliver Eltie II to me is just a stretched out Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe with more features but it still retains the rear dinette/bed, 2 person side dinette and forward wet bath and wardrobe and narrow shape.

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Old 11-24-2015, 10:07 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tevake View Post
I'm wondering if adhesives have come along to the point that an aluminum skin can be built without the labor intensive rivets. Allowing a simpler to build, less expensive airstream to still be shiny and curvatious.

Cheers Richard
DeLorens were basically a fiberglass shell with the stainless steel panels bonded to a body shell
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:17 AM   #24
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My vote is to start with the biggest factor that will impact AS in what is different about the 50 and under market segment.

These people have 2 kids, and don't have a pickup truck.

They need to sleep 4 people (and if a girl and boy, have 2 kids sleeping apart), and have this towable with a Honda Pilot 3500 # max type of vehicle.

I bet they have a trailer with single double bed for the parents, and 2 dinette benches that make 2 cot sized beds for kids at the table. I would expect a wet bath, and kitchen like in the sports.

All in a product that is the size of the sport 19-22, but costs less than the sport 16 and weighs no more than the sport 16.

So maybe they have figured out how to stretch the sport 16 to be a couple of feet longer. Then kept the same sort of kitchen setup , and made the table area different to make 2 beds.

And cut 10K off the price. So the construction methods of the underbelly probably are similar, but the top sections are somehow prebuilt to drop on and attach. Maybe aluminum, maybe not. Probably not.
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:23 AM   #25
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Don't forget, people wrap their vehicles in chrome, aluminum, and stainless steel wraps, why not do a fiberglass body in one of these? Pretty sure the Aluminum body adds 30K to the cost of an Airstream from the start if you consider current commodity prices. Not only that, it's a violate area of the market.





I can certainly agree with the comments above. Airstreams seem designed with grandparents and older couples in mind. The modern interiors are very appealing to people my age, along with the iconic design. Very "Apple-ish" and was part of the draw for us.

But the price points, are near house prices compared to the rest of the RV market which is attracting more and more younger buyers in their 30's & 40's. The layout's aren't suited for families without some compromises.

And let's be honest, Airstreams are heavy compared to how they used to be. You need a truck, and in some cases a big one. Yes, I know about CanAm but the average 30 & 40 yr doesn't even know about that. They're just thinking, I have a Cross-Over and now I need a truck? No thanks.
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:28 AM   #26
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A number of high end auto builders are combining composites for the upper parts of bodies, aluminum and steel down low where weight is less critical and their strength and durability are an advantage.
It funny that Ive spent most of my life using fiberglass, then more modern fibers and epoxys in surfboards, sail boards , and boats. Only now to be bitten by the aluminumitus bug.
When most R Vs are built using the very materials I'm so comfortable with. It's just that most builders are using those materials so poorly .

Cheers Richard
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:29 AM   #27
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Bold,
Those are really cool.
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Old 11-24-2015, 10:59 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piggy Bank View Post
My vote is to start with the biggest factor that will impact AS in what is different about the 50 and under market segment.

These people have 2 kids, and don't have a pickup truck.

They need to sleep 4 people (and if a girl and boy, have 2 kids sleeping apart), and have this towable with a Honda Pilot 3500 # max type of vehicle.

I bet they have a trailer with single double bed for the parents, and 2 dinette benches that make 2 cot sized beds for kids at the table. I would expect a wet bath, and kitchen like in the sports.

All in a product that is the size of the sport 19-22, but costs less than the sport 16 and weighs no more than the sport 16.

So maybe they have figured out how to stretch the sport 16 to be a couple of feet longer. Then kept the same sort of kitchen setup , and made the table area different to make 2 beds.

And cut 10K off the price. So the construction methods of the underbelly probably are similar, but the top sections are somehow prebuilt to drop on and attach. Maybe aluminum, maybe not. Probably not.
Wheeler said not Aluminum, about $33K, smaller, and looking like an Airstream

I'm thinking 14-17 feet, fiberglass ( the only way I can think of to make it look like an Airstream ) They must already know more than they are saying if they plan to launch it in the middle of 2016. Sounds like they are targeting the 40s, late 30s crowd.
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