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Old 08-28-2019, 04:57 PM   #1
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1964 26' Overlander
1964 19' Globetrotter
OlyPen , Washington
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New 2020 Caravels

We have a new section of the forum to discuss the 2020 (and later) models.

The Caravel moniker has returned after an almost 50 year hiatus for 2020 with 4 floor plans in four lengths. New models include 16', 19', 20' and 22' and all are single axle models.

The Caravel name was first seen in 1956 and was in production in 17 and 18' models through 1971.
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Old 08-28-2019, 05:27 PM   #2
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Woo! Thanks for adding this section Janet!

We've just ordered our 2020 Caravel 20FB with awning package and should take delivery late October.

In the meantime, we keep watching Patrick's walk through to hold us over until we have our very own.

" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" width="425" height="350">

When we get it, we have a few modifications we plan to make to the inside.

Looking forward to seeing the posts from other Caravel owners!
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Old 08-28-2019, 05:47 PM   #3
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I got mine!
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Old 09-03-2019, 03:58 PM   #4
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2016 16' Sport
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Our first weekend trip went great with our new 16. We debated buying a 19 in exchange for the 16 sport we already had. However we always liked the 16s floor plan better. I think the new 16 Caravell addressed the upgrades that we needed. Mostly storage. It doesn’t seem like much but the cabinets are so much bigger that everything can be stored away. Now there is no shuffling boxes around at bedtime when we change the dinette to a bed. The ducted air makes it possible to sleep with the AC on at a preset temperature. The AC alone was worth the upgrade.
Basically it’s everything our sport was just better.
A few minor things need fixing but all in all very nice.
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Old 09-04-2019, 11:28 AM   #5
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Awesome! Congrats! Can't wait to receive ours and take that first trip.
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Old 10-07-2019, 10:03 PM   #6
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2020 16' Caravel
VICTORIA , British Columbia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shiny16 View Post
Our first weekend trip went great with our new 16. We debated buying a 19 in exchange for the 16 sport we already had. However we always liked the 16s floor plan better. I think the new 16 Caravell addressed the upgrades that we needed. Mostly storage. It doesn’t seem like much but the cabinets are so much bigger that everything can be stored away. Now there is no shuffling boxes around at bedtime when we change the dinette to a bed. The ducted air makes it possible to sleep with the AC on at a preset temperature. The AC alone was worth the upgrade.
Basically it’s everything our sport was just better.
A few minor things need fixing but all in all very nice.
They look amazing. Was there any issue having no bathroom sink.
I love the 16 RB over the 19 SB
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Old 10-08-2019, 05:23 AM   #7
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2016 16' Sport
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lockie View Post
They look amazing. Was there any issue having no bathroom sink.
I love the 16 RB over the 19 SB
Having a bathroom sink would be nice but not a big deal to us. It just means you canít leave dishes in the kitchen sink close to bedtime. Some on this forum consider the wet bath a deal breaker. We really have no issue with it at all. The bathroom stays nice and clean. Using the curtain offers plenty of privacy for a shower and access to the closet and bedroom area.
Outside of a separate shower we really didnít see any significant benefit to the 19 over the 16 and prefer the layout of the 16. The only upgrade we would really find useful would be a dedicated bed for the boy but that doesnít come until at least a 23 which is a different animal.
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:30 PM   #8
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2020 16' Caravel
VICTORIA , British Columbia
Join Date: Oct 2019
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Thank you,
We also preferred the layout of the 16 over the 19.
We are going to spend some more time in it to get a better feel for it.
Any thing else we should focus on when we view it again.
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Old 10-09-2019, 06:54 AM   #9
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I canít really think of anything major. Stand in the bath and make sure your comfortable for a shower. We like it but as I said some seem to have an issue with it. The holding tanks are on the small side so if you camp without hookups and like long showers you could be limited. This can be negated by use of the outdoor shower and campground facilities.
We never really felt a need for anything bigger. We had a sport 16 and the only thing we needed was a bit more storage space. We had some clothing and food stored in baskets. Not such a big deal until bedtime when we had to shuffle things around to change the dinette into a bed. The larger cabinets in the Caravell remedied this perfectly.
The other thing we disliked on the sport was the noisy a/c. Now we can run the a/c and watch a movie or actually sleep.
If we really wanted or needed ďeverythingĒ in a camper we would go with the 25 for sure. That would require a new truck and storage space I canít accommodate nor justify now. The 19,20 and 22 I just donít see as any benefit for us.
Another thing to keep in mind is 17 mpg towing with my Grand Cherokee and the availability of last minute reservations at busy campgrounds.
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Old 10-13-2019, 12:40 PM   #10
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2020 20' Caravel
Calgary , Alberta
Join Date: Oct 2019
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I picked up my Caravel 20FB last Saturday! Iím going to take her on our maiden voyage next weekend. Itíll likely be a dry run (literally) as she was winterized by the dealer prior to my picking her up. Excited for this new adventure!
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Old 10-14-2019, 10:36 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by TFlemm View Post
I picked up my Caravel 20FB last Saturday! I’m going to take her on our maiden voyage next weekend. It’ll likely be a dry run (literally) as she was winterized by the dealer prior to my picking her up. Excited for this new adventure!
Wooo!! Congrats! We still have about two more weeks before our 20FB is ready. Can't wait. How do you like it?
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Old 10-19-2019, 07:08 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Jason in TX View Post
Wooo!! Congrats! We still have about two more weeks before our 20FB is ready. Can't wait. How do you like it?
Thanks Jason in TX, I love it so far!
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Old 10-19-2019, 07:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TFlemm View Post
I picked up my Caravel 20FB last Saturday! Iím going to take her on our maiden voyage next weekend. Itíll likely be a dry run (literally) as she was winterized by the dealer prior to my picking her up. Excited for this new adventure!
You're going to love it. I got my 19' Flying Cloud two years ago and it has been great!
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:44 PM   #14
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We are very close to putting down our deposit! I too watch Patrick's video over and over!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason in TX View Post
Woo! Thanks for adding this section Janet!

We've just ordered our 2020 Caravel 20FB with awning package and should take delivery late October.

In the meantime, we keep watching Patrick's walk through to hold us over until we have our very own.

" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" width="425" height="350">

When we get it, we have a few modifications we plan to make to the inside.

Looking forward to seeing the posts from other Caravel owners!
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Old 01-28-2020, 08:09 AM   #15
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2020 25' Flying Cloud
Chula Vista , California
Join Date: Jan 2020
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Good Day

First time poster. My wife and I have been in the market for a TT for over a year and having looked at a number of trailers over that time our TT knowledge has increased immensely. We started off with Little Guy and NuCamps. Excellent Teardrop trailers but a little small for us. Next came Arctic Fox and Lance. Both have excellent reputations but having looked at a few Lances on the dealer lots we were seeing a lot of quality issues that had us concerned. I discovered Escape trailers from British Columbia and was, and still am, very impressed with their product. But we never considered an Airstream thinking it was out of our price range.
Having seen an ad for a used 22' Sport at a local AS dealer we went to take a look. We liked what we saw and the price was in our range. We then wandered over to the new AS and immediately took a liking to the Bambi models on display. One thing led to another and now we are contemplating ordering a new 20FB Caravel. Dealer had a 16 and 22 in stock as well as the associated Bambi models but no 20FBs. Apparently none of the big three dealers in SoCal have them either. Our local dealer says he doesn't stock them because they were a slow sell. My wife thinks it maybe due to the narrow passage in the kitchen which she wants to see for herself. We watched the associated video above as well as a few others and we still like the 20FB but have that nagging question in our head.
Why isn't it a stocked unit?
So for the owners of a 20FB Caravelle (or Bambi) we ask, how do you like the kitchen arrangement? Does the bathroom get in the way? Does the lack of elbow room over the right side of the sink cause problems? My wife is petite 5' and I'm medium build 5'9" so I think we both can fit in the kitchen without any issues.

Thanks to all,
Ed & Merle
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Old 01-28-2020, 08:44 AM   #16
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Long Island , New York
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Welcome to the forum Ed and Merle!

You will find a sizeable fan base of the basic 20' design in this [very long] thread:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f542...rs-127845.html

We have had a our Flying Cloud 20' for a few years, and love it, as the best compromise which fits our needs. The best galley in an Airstream, until you get up to the 27' to 28' range IMO. Hopefully you will be able to see one soon, in order to assess the "fit" for your needs.

Good luck,

Peter
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Old 01-29-2020, 04:07 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreg52 View Post
Our local dealer says he doesn't stock them because they were a slow sell. My wife thinks it maybe due to the narrow passage in the kitchen which she wants to see for herself. We watched the associated video above as well as a few others and we still like the 20FB but have that nagging question in our head.
Why isn't it a stocked unit?

Ed & Merle
Hello Ed & Merle. Congrats on looking at Airstream. I think you are landing in the right place for a rig that will give you years of happiness.

Now to address the "dealer doesn't stock them because they are slow to sell"

I would not be concerned with the kitchen being the problem. I would be concerned with that sales person giving you a load of BS.

The 2020 Caravel is a fist year design. It was announced in July of 2019 and for the debut of this new model, they made a run of each style around July. A dealer would have needed to be paying attention to the new model release and put in an order for 1 or two units of each.

Now, let me explain how the dealership works. The dealer "buys" these units from the Airstream factory. They have to take out a bank loan, purchase units at cost, sell the unit and then pay back the bank and pocket the profit. The longer a unit stays on the lot, the more interest they are paying on their loan to the bank to have the unit.

Now to explain how the Airstream factory works. Their old factory (they just moved out this month into a new facility) would build a certain style and a bunch of them for a week or two, and then they switch to another style, build a bunch of those and then switch again. So they may build a bunch of Bambi 16s for a week or two, and then switch to Bambi 19s, etc etc. We know for a FACT that the last run of Caravel 20 trailers was built the week of October 20th. Our trailer was built in this batch.

Now for our story. We spotted this 20 foot Caravel trailer at a dealer 3 hours from our house back in late July of 2019. It was on a day that we went to look at a used, just like you, but wandered over to the new and really liked the Caravel 20. They said throw out an offer and we shot really low. They said no. We weren't really ready to buy, so we left and drove 3 hours back home to Dallas.

We thought on it all night and the rest of the next week and then they called us and said if we were serious, they would take our offer, but we would have to drive 3 hours, pick it up and then drive 3 hours back home. We have a dealer in Dallas, and we called them. Dallas said they had only ordered 1 unit from the July batch and it flew out of the dealership in the first few days.
They said they would match the other dealers price, but we would have to wait for Airstream to make the next batch. That would be in October. We said we would do it and the waiting period started.

I learned that you can call the factory and actually go watch your unit be built if you want to. They confirmed that they would not be building Caravel 20s again until October and they would build that unit for a week. Then move to another unit, before shutting down the entire plant for a couple weeks while they move to their brand new state of the art facility.

I believe Airstream is now ramping back up in their new facility. Airstream makes all the US Airstreams, they make blank shells for Ultimate Airstream. They make blank hulls for the European and Asian markets and ship those out, and they make hotel room Airstreams for the new Auto Camp hotels they just bought into. Then they also make Airstreams that are ordered by dealers.

SOOOOOOO..... All that to say, I guarantee your dealer hasn't had a unit. They want to sell you a unit that they have on the lot because they are paying interest on that unit. They don't want you to like something that they don't have and order something because that is taking out a new loan, extending their credit on something while waiting for it to be built and you pay for it, etc etc etc.

Sales lies to get you to buy what they have. The Caravel is nice, and they aren't around because they sell quickly and you have to wait for the next batch to be built at the factory.

You will have no problem in the kitchen. Its awesome and frankly the best feature of the unit. The 3 burner stove is amazing. The deep sink is really awesome. We love the fixtures. The 12v compressor refrigerator cools down in about 1 hour vs the propane absorption fridges that take much longer. The quiet ducted air is SOOOO much quieter than the Bambi A/C that hangs down in the unit. Many more upgrades to the Caravel than the new Bambi. Frankly I would steer clear of the new 2020 Bambi and go Caravel all the way. OR if you like the older flying cloud wood, do a used Flying Cloud 20. However that ducted Air was a selling point for us. You cannot talk over the A/C unit that hangs inside the trailer. I know I wouldn't be able to sleep with that thing running.

Hope this long story helps and that you get what you really want. Happy Airstreaming!
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Old 01-30-2020, 04:27 PM   #18
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2020 25' Flying Cloud
Chula Vista , California
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 32
Thank you Jason. That explains a lot. I sort of figured the units on lot financing bit but the information regarding build times was enlightening. I think we're set on a 20FB. Got distracted by some late model Tommy Bahamas but we're moving forward. Talked to a second dealer yesterday and he told us exactly what you said regarding the 20FB. He has one coming in March. So we'll see.
Thanks again.

Ed & Merle
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Old 02-04-2020, 05:58 PM   #19
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You and your wife are about the same dimensions as Steve and I. We fit just fine. Here in New England, our dealer said they were a HOT seller. I love the kitchen!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreg52 View Post
Good Day

First time poster. My wife and I have been in the market for a TT for over a year and having looked at a number of trailers over that time our TT knowledge has increased immensely. We started off with Little Guy and NuCamps. Excellent Teardrop trailers but a little small for us. Next came Arctic Fox and Lance. Both have excellent reputations but having looked at a few Lances on the dealer lots we were seeing a lot of quality issues that had us concerned. I discovered Escape trailers from British Columbia and was, and still am, very impressed with their product. But we never considered an Airstream thinking it was out of our price range.
Having seen an ad for a used 22' Sport at a local AS dealer we went to take a look. We liked what we saw and the price was in our range. We then wandered over to the new AS and immediately took a liking to the Bambi models on display. One thing led to another and now we are contemplating ordering a new 20FB Caravel. Dealer had a 16 and 22 in stock as well as the associated Bambi models but no 20FBs. Apparently none of the big three dealers in SoCal have them either. Our local dealer says he doesn't stock them because they were a slow sell. My wife thinks it maybe due to the narrow passage in the kitchen which she wants to see for herself. We watched the associated video above as well as a few others and we still like the 20FB but have that nagging question in our head.
Why isn't it a stocked unit?
So for the owners of a 20FB Caravelle (or Bambi) we ask, how do you like the kitchen arrangement? Does the bathroom get in the way? Does the lack of elbow room over the right side of the sink cause problems? My wife is petite 5' and I'm medium build 5'9" so I think we both can fit in the kitchen without any issues.

Thanks to all,
Ed & Merle
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Old 02-04-2020, 06:03 PM   #20
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Merrimack , New Hampshire
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Posts: 13
Hey thanks! I learned sooo much! I wish we had gone to see ours being built. I didnt know you could do that!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason in TX View Post
Hello Ed & Merle. Congrats on looking at Airstream. I think you are landing in the right place for a rig that will give you years of happiness.

Now to address the "dealer doesn't stock them because they are slow to sell"

I would not be concerned with the kitchen being the problem. I would be concerned with that sales person giving you a load of BS.

The 2020 Caravel is a fist year design. It was announced in July of 2019 and for the debut of this new model, they made a run of each style around July. A dealer would have needed to be paying attention to the new model release and put in an order for 1 or two units of each.

Now, let me explain how the dealership works. The dealer "buys" these units from the Airstream factory. They have to take out a bank loan, purchase units at cost, sell the unit and then pay back the bank and pocket the profit. The longer a unit stays on the lot, the more interest they are paying on their loan to the bank to have the unit.

Now to explain how the Airstream factory works. Their old factory (they just moved out this month into a new facility) would build a certain style and a bunch of them for a week or two, and then they switch to another style, build a bunch of those and then switch again. So they may build a bunch of Bambi 16s for a week or two, and then switch to Bambi 19s, etc etc. We know for a FACT that the last run of Caravel 20 trailers was built the week of October 20th. Our trailer was built in this batch.

Now for our story. We spotted this 20 foot Caravel trailer at a dealer 3 hours from our house back in late July of 2019. It was on a day that we went to look at a used, just like you, but wandered over to the new and really liked the Caravel 20. They said throw out an offer and we shot really low. They said no. We weren't really ready to buy, so we left and drove 3 hours back home to Dallas.

We thought on it all night and the rest of the next week and then they called us and said if we were serious, they would take our offer, but we would have to drive 3 hours, pick it up and then drive 3 hours back home. We have a dealer in Dallas, and we called them. Dallas said they had only ordered 1 unit from the July batch and it flew out of the dealership in the first few days.
They said they would match the other dealers price, but we would have to wait for Airstream to make the next batch. That would be in October. We said we would do it and the waiting period started.

I learned that you can call the factory and actually go watch your unit be built if you want to. They confirmed that they would not be building Caravel 20s again until October and they would build that unit for a week. Then move to another unit, before shutting down the entire plant for a couple weeks while they move to their brand new state of the art facility.

I believe Airstream is now ramping back up in their new facility. Airstream makes all the US Airstreams, they make blank shells for Ultimate Airstream. They make blank hulls for the European and Asian markets and ship those out, and they make hotel room Airstreams for the new Auto Camp hotels they just bought into. Then they also make Airstreams that are ordered by dealers.

SOOOOOOO..... All that to say, I guarantee your dealer hasn't had a unit. They want to sell you a unit that they have on the lot because they are paying interest on that unit. They don't want you to like something that they don't have and order something because that is taking out a new loan, extending their credit on something while waiting for it to be built and you pay for it, etc etc etc.

Sales lies to get you to buy what they have. The Caravel is nice, and they aren't around because they sell quickly and you have to wait for the next batch to be built at the factory.

You will have no problem in the kitchen. Its awesome and frankly the best feature of the unit. The 3 burner stove is amazing. The deep sink is really awesome. We love the fixtures. The 12v compressor refrigerator cools down in about 1 hour vs the propane absorption fridges that take much longer. The quiet ducted air is SOOOO much quieter than the Bambi A/C that hangs down in the unit. Many more upgrades to the Caravel than the new Bambi. Frankly I would steer clear of the new 2020 Bambi and go Caravel all the way. OR if you like the older flying cloud wood, do a used Flying Cloud 20. However that ducted Air was a selling point for us. You cannot talk over the A/C unit that hangs inside the trailer. I know I wouldn't be able to sleep with that thing running.

Hope this long story helps and that you get what you really want. Happy Airstreaming!
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