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Go eRVing with Winnebago electric motorhome


Taking an RV out to a national park with the family is a great way to have quality family time. And Winnebago is one of the most recognizable names in the RV industry. So naturally it makes sense for Winnebago launch the e-RV concept vehicle – the first all-electric zero emission motorhome from a major RV manufacturer.

The Winnebago Industries e-RV concept vehicle is an entirely new, all-electric, zero emission RV that incorporates an advanced drive train and battery package that also powers all the living area systems of the coach.

Powering up the e-RV and keeping it at a full charge will be one of the major hurdles for Winnebago to “sell” to their customers. And certainly the e-RV is aimed at a newer buyer, rather than the tried and true RV customer. Although, according to the company, “For the seasoned RVer, the e-RV concept vehicle is a new way to experience the outdoors. And for a new generation of RVers – who want to preserve the natural world as much as they want to enjoy it – the e-RV concept vehicle presents a modern and authentic way to explore the outdoors with minimal eco impact.”

What is the range of the e-RV?

Range is always the first question when it comes to any EVs. According to Winnebago, most RV trips in motorhomes are under 200 miles. That seems low to people like me, who don’t have their finger on the pulse of this industry, but as an industry leader, I trust Winnebago to know their details like this.

As such, the e-RV from Winnebago has an industry standard, 86-kWh battery configuration that provides a range of 125 miles while powering on-board systems. According to Winnebago, “This range will meet the needs of a majority (54%) of new RV buyers who prefer to make trips under 200 miles.”

Charging time is around 45-minutes at high-current charging stations.

Enough power for all appliances too

Most RVs are powered by electricity anyway, when you get your campsite, you just plug in and fire up your AC, appliances, etc. That’s the same situation here with the e-RV.

Key elements include a 350-volt DC power for the water heater and roof mounted air conditioner with heat pump, 110-volt AC for the induction cooktop and the refrigerator, which can also operate on 12-volt DC power for enhanced flexibility and convenience.

Sustainable materials

It’d be hard for Winnebago to claim eco-friendly if they didn’t also use materials that were sustainable. And inside the e-RV are both eco-friendly and sustainable including recycled cork-rubber flooring and woolen wall appliques to enhance thermal and wall insulation.

Ford Transit chassis

Ford Motor Company has been a leader when it comes to EVs and the e-RV’s chassis is based on a Ford Transit platform. According to information on Winnebago’s website, the chassis has been modified with an advanced electrical power system from Lightning e Motors that powers the drivetrain, vehicle controls and living quarters.

Smartphone application

The entire operating system can be powered through a tablet or smartphone app. This means turning on/off lights, the awning and even enabling operation of subsystems can all be done remotely. According to Winnebago you can even optimize load and efficiency and display all the system information on a digital display. All subsystem operations can be monitored and adjusted through this digital application.

That’s pretty cool and cutting edge.

Bottom line on the Winnebago electric motorhome

One of my ideal vacations would be a motorhome through the mountain west. I’m not sure I have the courage to try it in an EV version of a motorhome, but I respect Winnebago for being a leader like this. Surely, as we move toward electrification, more of these will pop onto the market. I would hope that future iterations have improved range so I could take that open road trip, without stopping for expensive fuel.

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Jimmy Dinsmore

Jimmy is News Editor for PickupTruckTalk with an expertise in new vehicles. He is also a Ford Mustang historian having authored the book Mustang by Design (available on Amazon). His second book, about the history of Ford's F-Series truck comes out next year.

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