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Old 05-14-2009, 08:12 AM   #1
4 Rivet Member
2008 16' Safari
Destrehan , Louisiana
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 395
2008 Safari Sport review

We had an old 1972 Safari, it was broken into and trashed. After two years with out a trailer we have just purchased a 2008 Safari Sport. We have the 16' trailer. I'm writing this review of the trailer for those interested in the Airsteam Sport line.
Airstream came out with the Sport line of trailers to offer a smaller, lighter and easier to tow line of trailers. You have to go back to the 1960's to find Airstreams built this light weight. Airstream moved to the luxury market by the 1970's has not offered much in the line of small trailers except the Bambi line. Even there, the newer Bambi was built on a 8.5' chassis and was heavier than the Sport line.
To get the weight down, Airstream returned to the 7.5' wide chassis. My trailer is only 2850 lb dry and GVWR is 3500 lb. They also lowered the body height to get the trailer as close to the ground as possible. This makes for both light weight and low air drag. I've towed the trailer 1200 miles and can tell you that this trailer is an easy tow. You don't even need load levelers or anti-sway bars to tow safely. Very little trouble with cross winds or passing trucks. I use a 1/2 ton pick-up to tow with. The brakes are very good and it only requires about 7 volts to get proper brake action on the trailer.
The problem with the lower trailer height is that you can easily drag the back end of the trailer when going up ramps. This is the only fault I have noticed when towing the trailer.
The Sport line is sold as an entry level trailer. To keep cost down the classic shape exterior has very little fancy trim. The windows are small, the is no panoramic window up front and there is no door window. To offset this there is a great skylight in the trailer so the interior is bright and pleasant. I must say that the laminants used today are not as good as the older trailers. It will take extra work and repairs to keep the inside looking fresh.
The rear bath is great. The large shower makes for a nice dry bathroom. The tambor doors in the bath are gone but there is a nice size storage cabinet there.
The galley is small but functional. Get the optional microwave/convection oven. The over head vent fan doubles as the galley vent. There is no vent hood over the stove. All this was done to cut weight and cost. You loose a little in functionality to cut the weight. Don't expect to whip up a seven course meal in this trailer. Still, simple meals should be no problem.
The front sofa converts to a double bed.....sort of. The bed is an odd shape when extended and you will have trouble making it up. We went with sleeping bags instead. We don't wash sheets, we just wash the sleepng bags. It also cuts the time needed to convert from living mode to sleeping mode.
Like all new Airstreams, you will lack for nothing on the road. A/C, heat, hot water, stove, oven, refrigerator, running water from a 20 gallon tank, shower, toilet, TV, DVD, CD and stereo. They have a vinyl floor that is fairly easy to clean and looks good. I'm not sure how well I like the mouse fur walls. They are easily stained and pick up odors. You can check other post about mouse fur to see the problems.
The biggest problem with the interior is the lack of storage space. Expect to use your tow vehicle for overflow storage. There is no exterior storage other than a tube to store the sewage line in. At 16.5 feet, what did you expect?
The trailer comes with a Zip-Dee awning. The dinner table is a fold up free standing table so moving outside to eat is an option in nice weather.
The trailer is rated for 2 people. For a single person or a couple, this trailer is great. Extended living aboard is possible but I think is would be a problem for more that one person after a while. There might be enough room for one small child and a couple but that would be the limit.
This trailers greatest advantage is it's small size and light weight. That is also it's greatest disadvantage. For an easy weekend get away this little trailer is perfect. Set-up time at camp was minimal. The leveling feet are built in and easy to lower. I can pull into camp and have everything set up and running in about 10 minutes. Departure times were just as fast.
I know this little Airstream is not for everyone. This was just what my wife and I were looking for and we are very happy with it.
Reasons to get this trailer:
Vacations and weekend get away.
To live out of when on projects for work.
Hurricane evacuation.
I hope you find this review useful.
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