Tuesday, July 5, 2022


RV Review: 2022 Coachmen Apex Ultra-Lite 211RBS

Today’s review is of the 2022 Coachmen Apex Ultra-Lite 211RBS. This floor plan is similar to a number of floor plans that my wife and I are zeroing in on to replace a travel trailer that we totaled a while back. Also, I’ve had a few of you ask how we did this to our trailer and we detailed it out in this podcast episode if you care. Heck, it’s there even if you don’t care. 

So, as we look into what should be our next trailer, we are considering trailers that can be easily pulled by a half-ton truck (we own a Ram 1500). We also want something that will work with the slide in. And we’re also zeroing in on the floor plan that is shared by today’s Coachmen Apex Ultra-Lite 211RBS. 

I’ve written plenty of times about how there are just so many floor plans out there and the various RV brands with this floor plan. Those include Coachmen’s Freedom Express 192RBS and the Rockwood Mini Lite 2109S. 

The Apex Ultra-Lite is long

However, of all those mentioned, the Apex Ultra-Lite is the longest. What Coachmen does with that additional length is part of what makes the difference here. In fact, this trailer is almost four feet longer than the Rockwood and the company’s own Freedom Express Ultra Lite 192RBS. 

However, it is about the same length as Keystone’s Bullet 221RBS. 

What does Coachmen do with this extra length? 

Highlights of the Coachmen Apex Ultra-Lite 211RBS

The first thing I noticed is that there’s a breakfast bar between the true queen-sized bed and the kitchen. One of the principal complaints some of my friends have about this floor plan is that the only dining area is on the theater seats. However, a few of these are available with a dinette instead. 

But if you choose the dinette, there isn’t really a comfortable place to sit back and relax. 

Coachmen has provided some really comfortable theater seats. These are a bit wider than the average model with better padding and upholstery. So they are a comfortable place to sit back and relax. 

But then there’s that breakfast bar—something I haven’t seen in the other floor plans. So now you’ve actually got a good place to sit back, but also a good place to have a meal with a proper table and such. 

Handy portable table in the Apex Ultra-Lite

However, there is also a portable table included in this floor plan. So you could sit at the theater seats, watch something on the TV and also enjoy a meal. The one challenge here is that there is carpeting in the slide room. So if you’re someone who eats like my dog did, or like I do, and consider it a full contact sport, you may be better off at the breakfast bar where the carpet isn’t directly under you. 

But that table can be used in another place—where Coachmen absolutely distinguishes itself in this floor plan. 

The true queen-sized bed can be lifted up courtesy of the gas struts underneath. When you lift it, you’ll see what has to be my absolute favorite under-bed storage arrangement. Coachmen builds two cabinets under here that really make great use of the space. 

More storage

On the camp-side cabinet are a bunch of cubbies arguably designed for shoes to live. Atop this there’s also a small cushion so you could sit and put said shoes on. 

On the road side there are a few drawers and an open space. This would be a good place for a laundry basket but could also serve to house a pet if they like being in a kennel. 

But you could do something totally out of the box and move the portable table over here and use this as a weird office space. I could easily see myself sitting on that cushion writing RV reviews right from inside an RV. 

The Apex Ultra-Lite trailers are built with Azdel substrate, both on the inside and outside of the wall laminate, as well as on the rear wall—which is a plus. Also, I’ve been told that having the stabilizer jacks at a 45° angle to the frame helps keep the rig from rocking. Nice. 


One of the only downsides to the nifty under-bed storage is that it does take up some of the space in the pass-through storage compartment. I like this under-bed storage arrangement so much that I’m fine with this. But that’s not true of all campers, which is why there are so many choices of basically a similar floor plan. 

One of the odd things about how Coachmen built the Apex Ultra-Lite is the pantry, which is located right at the rear entrance. Coachmen put several shelves inside here that, to me, are at odd locations height-wise. While it’s certainly easy enough to remove the shelves with a screw gun, it’s just an odd arrangement. I wish they would have put in one of those adjustable shelf arrangements instead. 

Boondocking and travel access

While the bar that comes out and gives good space to the kitchen counter is nifty for that reason, it does make it much more difficult to access the bed when the slide is in. Yeah, you can do it but it’s going to take a bit of doing.

Otherwise, everything you might need is accessible in here. Also, the fridge and bathroom are easy to get to with the slide room in.

These now come with a 12-volt DC compressor fridge, so they also include a 100-watt solar panel and 10-amp controller. There’s 50 gallons of fresh water storage aboard, as well. So you could easily spend some time off the grid in this rig—if that is your style. However, you’ll want more solar and a couple of batteries to keep the fridge happy. But I like these fridges quite a bit, so that’s okay.

In summary

This is one of the larger examples of this floor plan and Coachmen has done an excellent job of utilizing this space in a way that addresses some of the concerns of some travelers. 

Of course, as much as they paid attention to details like the cabinetry under the bed, no floor furnace registers and the Azdel in the laminates, this also suffers from the usual RV implementation of the worthless vent fans and small oven. 

This one has enough unique attributes and advantages that it stands out in this field of similar floor plans. But is it the one we’ve chosen? Well, you’ll just have to wait and see.

I would love to read your comments and suggestions over on our new forums, where you can weigh in and start or join a discussion about all things RV. Here’s a link to my RV Reviews Forum.

Tony comes to RVtravel.com having worked at an RV dealership and been a lifelong RV enthusiast. He also has written the syndicated Curbside column about cars. You can find his writing here and at StressLessCamping where he also has a podcast about the RV life with his wife. 

These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.

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2 months ago

I’ve been shopping for a year. These reviews have been so helpful. Based on this I went and bought a Coachman Spirit 1943RB. The Grand Design 200MB was a close 2nd. I just like the fun storage and the comfy seats better. Also, every sales person is in love with GD but I noticed a lot of sloppy work on the interior. Both trailers had the same springs. I loathed the last trailer I had, Little Guy Max. Nine gallon black tank and the drawers constantly fell out and broke during transport. It was quite cramped, too. That was my fault, COVID impulse buy. I considered the Ember you reviewed this week, but I don’t like the euro windows. I don’t think they are safe at all. Anyway, thank you for all the reviews. I love RVs and this is my favorite thing to read every day.

2 months ago

Most trailers are delivered from the factory without a battery or a temporary battery that is removed upon delivery. The dealer then installs 1-2 inexpensive lead-acid, deep-cycle batteries unless the buyer specifies AGM or, more recently, lithium batteries. The 12v fridge must have a battery or it would not operate at night when unplugged from the TV, shore power, or generator. And no travel trailer this size has a generator offered even as an option.

We had a TT and a fifth wheel with propane/120v AC fridges. We much prefer our current 12v fridge combined with 400w of solar and 220 amp-hours of lithium batteries. Less worry about leveling and keeping the propane on while driving on hot summer days. We could have even gone a couple of days running a 12v fridge on the Alaska Marine Highway Ferry. No way to do that with a two-way fridge because the propane tank was turned off and sealed by the ferry staff before the RV was loaded on the ship.

Roger Spalding
2 months ago

Tony, perhaps I’m just ignorant. You stated that the camper would need batteries, if one wanted to boondock. The solar panel is powering a charge controller. Are there no batteries between the controller and the 12V fridge? I do not think I have ever run into a rig where a controller directly powers the fridge and other 12V accessories. Also, you didn’t mention the presence of a generator which would be necessary to power the A/C while boondocking. Is this rig destined to be a camp squatter? Please forgive my impertinence if I have misunderstood you. Thanks, as always, your daily column starts my day.

Dale e Rose
2 months ago

The biggest deal breaker for me is the lack of a wall for the bedroom, along with no door. My wife and I don’t always sleep on the same times, so this floor plan gives no privacy for the bed. I like the rest of the floor plan.

Bob p
2 months ago

Another good review and right at the upper limits of my truck’s capabilities.

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