Airstream Nest production halted

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By Keith Ward
Airstream has decided that it doesn’t like fiberglass RVs after all, killing production on their Airstream Nest travel trailer after just a few years.

Airstream pulled the plug on the Nest, as the below screenshot from its website shows clearly. Airstream is known globally for its shiny aluminum RVs, which are admired for their snappy looks and easy towing capabilities.

The Airstream Nest was a somewhat daring departure for the Jackson, Ohio-based manufacturer. There are numerous fiberglass RV manufacturers, and it’s seen as more of a niche market. Some of the leading companies in the space include Casita, Scamp, Escape, Oliver and Bigfoot. They tend to produce RVs in smaller volume and have specialized expertise in fiberglass manufacturing techniques.

High price, small space for Airstream Nest

The Airstream Nest is a 16-foot trailer, with the large windows that are a hallmark of the Airstream line. The base sticker price for the 2020 model was $45,900, which is high for such a small travel trailer. Of course, high prices are another signature feature of Airstreams.

The first Nests hit the market in April 2018, and got a lot of media coverage due to their attractive exterior and fiberglass construction. There were issues with them from the beginning, including poor gel-coating, according to some owners.

This isn’t unusual, of course – most RVs, including brand-new ones, have problems almost from the start. But given the high cost and small interiors of the units, it may have been too much for Airstream to overcome. The company has several other 16-foot RVs in their lineup as well, including the Bambi, Basecamp and Caravel, so competition from their own models may have also been a factor.

Whatever the ultimate reason, the bottom line is the same: When it comes to the Nest, Airstream has flown the coop.

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Keith is a journalist with more than 30 years of writing and editing experience. He was bitten by the RV bug in 2020, and takes delivery of his very own rig in May 2021. In addition to non-fiction, he also writes fiction, including fantasy, thriller, and drama. Find his books here.

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Chris
24 days ago

Taking delivery of a new Airstream 23′ Flying Cloud two years ago, I was in the showroom. There was a 16′ Bambi and a Nest side by side on the floor, and my salesman was showing both to a new customer. He remembered comments I had made about the Nest 6 weeks before when I first saw one. When the customer asked “Which one would you choose since they are about the same price,” my salesman looked at me and said, “Let him tell you instead of me.” Nest NEVER made a lick of sense as an AS product. Airstream means bulbous aluminum to 90% of the public, period. It’s why their Class Bs took time to catch on – skinned in aluminum with rounded noses or roof lines, they would have sold themselves from day one. An AS customer has their own image of what’s inside and outside of the product, and no amount of PR tubthumping will bust that association. Nest was too small, sterile, and Euro. Only way to sell it was pimp hauling by a small SUV or maybe fits in a garage. But all they pimped was style.

Chris
24 days ago
Reply to  Chris

Bottom line: the guy nodded the whole time I answered him and bought the Bambi.

Mitch
1 month ago

The Nest was bought from a company. AS proceeded to add alot of weight to it and price it at twice what a very nice Escape 17 footer runs. Escape builds veryNice fiberglass trailers and well made from BC Canada.

Bull
1 month ago

Big old Thor/Airstream can’t sell a fiberglass RV trailers for $45,000 yet Oliver Travel Trailers in little ole Hohenwald TN sells their fiberglass RV trailers for $60,000+ and sells every trailer they can produce.

Think about it.

What about Scamp, Casita, Escape and other fiberglass RV trailer producers that also sell all the trailers they can manufacture.

Makes you wonder WHY doesn’t it?????

Danadavis
1 month ago

Airstream. Don’t waist your time it’s to precious!
Enough said!

SDW
1 month ago

Airstreams are ridiculously priced for what you get.
Tight quarters because of (no side outs)
Hail will dent the body beyond repair.
A big lack of storage space compare to other travel trailers the same length.
And the cost is two to three times more.

PennyPA
1 month ago

This is so typical…big company buys out a little company, builds a couple of trailers, then pulls the plug and then sells no more.

Doug
1 month ago

carrying capacity was far too low vs. a sky-high price. And options like lithium, solar, etc. were far too limited.

Pretty, but not all that functional.

jim S.
1 month ago

I always thought Air Streams were more built for the “eye candy” market. I just could not see $100k for a 30′ rig, were I bought a $35k ORV (Outdoors RV Timber Ridge) that in most stat categories doubles what a Air Streams offers. As far as styling, they are in a class all by themselves. I wish the article would have included production numbers, or which plant or workers were effected.

At some point, the RV market is going to go soft. So maybe AS is cutting back now ahead of the downturn.

Donald N Wright
1 month ago

The Nest-Egg is expensive, and small. It has several advantages over other fiberglass trailers, Airstream bought an existing company and tried to improve the design. It has 6’6″ of headroom, as so many smaller trailers are designed for small or short people, and the rear door made it a natural for hauling bicycles or kayaks. However, cargo capacity was 500#, never saw one at an RV show, and Airstream jacked the price up to the point you thought they were made of gold.It’s a good little trailer, I hope someone else buys the line from them.

Don
1 month ago

Why is the rear door good for hauling bicycles?

Gina
1 month ago

This is not worth writing an article about if you know nothing more than that the Nest is being discontinued. You write an article with much speculation and theories and your own opinions. Could you have contacted Airstream for information? More and more this newsletter is light on news and high on fluff and personal opinions. Headlines.. but no substance. Now I see that you’ve never even owned an RV and you write fiction and fantasy books. News journalism is different, you need actual news. And you’re promoting your own books here. Poor taste to boot.

Sharon Boehmer
1 month ago
Reply to  Gina

WOW, that was rather harsh! Last time I checked, this is a RV newsletter, and anything Airstream does is RV news. I don’t own one, but kind of get the fascination and loyalty.
When the nest was “unveiled” Airstream made it a big deal, so closing up shop on it is also a big deal. What more do you want to know, it was a gamble that didn’t work. Now Nest owners will take care of the units and they too will become a classic.
As far as the author, I’m all for having someone with this experience. No one said you have to click on this link to buy a book. He will bring a new perspective to his writing as a “newbie” in the RV community.

Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Sharon Boehmer

Gina’s comment was not worthy of a reply. I would bet money I know how she is going to ________

Firefly
1 month ago
Reply to  Gina

Wrong on so many fronts. This is quite important news for anyone who has or thought about buying one. How will you get it repaired now that they are no longer in production? Will techs remember how to repair the few they see? Now you know why they are offered at a discount if you are looking to purchase. All we read about is the soaring demand for RVs. Well not this one and that alone makes for an interesting story.

Don Juan
1 month ago
Reply to  Gina

Let’s also not forgot that Airstream began selling the Nest via their acquisition of NEST Caravans. I doubt they would simply halt production without any specific plans to recoup some of their investment. I suspect we haven’t seen the last of the Nest, just maybe under a different parent company that is a more natural fit for a fiberglass outer luxury trailer.

Admin
RV Staff (@rvstaff)
1 month ago
Reply to  Gina

Hi, Gina. Yes, your comment was pretty harsh and uncalled for, and I know I shouldn’t bother to respond but I can’t help myself (sorry Keith, et al.).

I see that you’ve been reading our newsletters for at least a year. (Thank you.) So you should know that some of our articles are short news items and some go into much more depth. Some are technical, and some are personal opinions. If you miss the more technical stuff, just go to rvtravel.com and search for whatever information you need. There are thousands of articles for your perusal.

What difference does it make if Keith has never owned an RV? I haven’t either. (In fact, I’ve only been in one twice, and that was for business meetings with Chuck in his RV.) So should I go look for another job? 🙄

You may have noticed, since you’ve read our newsletters for quite awhile, that we always provide links to our writers’/contributors’ websites, blogs, and/or books. Their books on Amazon, BTW, are linked through RVtravel.com’s affiliate code, so that we benefit from their sales, as well. Sounds like a win-win situation to me.

Keith is one of our new writers and we’re enjoying his enthusiasm for RVing and his expertise in many facets of this business (we’re learning a lot from him). We look forward to a long relationship with him and can’t wait to read his future articles.

Have a good evening, Gina. 🙂 —Diane at RVtravel.com

Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  RV Staff

Diane – This may not be the smartest thing I will do today and I do not disagree with you but I also will agree, to a point, with Gina. The readers of this blog are RV owners looking for information about RV’ing. Gina’s comments may have been a little hard, but the article was rather light (maybe by choice). I got more info about the NEST from the comments than I did from the article. We see too much “news and comment” these days from people who write news / articles from info on the internet. It is tough for the seasoned RV’ers to read an article written by someone who has far less experience / knowledge than the reader. And everyone was new at some point.

This is not trying to throw rocks at anyone, and everyone is entitled to their opinion, but in this case a little more background and info would have made this a stronger read.Just my opinion. I am sure trying to cover the gambit of RV’ing and trying to keep it relevant is a challenge.You are doing great! Keep it up! Thanks

Admin
RV Staff (@rvstaff)
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Thanks for your comments, Steve. Look for Keith’s follow-up story on the Airstream Nest’s demise in Sunday’s News for RVers newsletter. 🙂 —Diane at RVtravel.com

Gina
24 days ago
Reply to  Steve

Thank you Steve, you said with more diplomacy than I did about the point I was trying to make. I write a column elsewhere on a topic I know about. And even then not an article goes out without research and fact-checking. So I would expect that writers here know something about RV’ing. A rational expectation. I would not write an article about something I know nothing about unless I did a lot of research, and even then I’d not be as competent as someone who knew their field.