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RV Review: 2023 Keystone Outback 271UFK—front kitchen debut

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Today’s RV review is of the new-for-2023 Keystone Outback Ultra-Lite 271UFK. This new floor plan is a member of the Keystone Outback Ultra-Lite series. There is also a larger, heavier series that is not Ultra-Lite. The dealership I worked at used to sell lots of those to traveling medical professionals and the like. They’re tanks. These are lighter. 

This is an interesting layout with a kitchen at the front and a bedroom in the back. But what makes the bedroom unique is that it features a king-sized bed which is located in a slide room. The bathroom separates the front and back of the rig but doesn’t completely cut off the front and back. 

Interestingly, the Forest River Aurora 26FKDS had this same floor plan, albeit with a queen-sized bed. This should be a good basis of comparison. 

Highlights in the Keystone Outback 271UFK

Keystone has really done a good job with interior storage on the Outback 271UFK. At the very front there’s a pantry over on the road side and then a nice “L”-shaped counter that incorporates the sink and a three-burner stove. 

There are a lot of drawers and cabinets here, and then another pantry/closet right at the entry door as well. 

There’s also a “dream dinette”—where the table easily moves up and down along a wall mount to go between bed and breakfast. There’s also storage under the dinette seats, if you want. However, you can have a freestanding table and chairs. 

Another highlight in the Keystone Outback 271UFK is the two entry doors to this trailer—one in the bedroom and one in the main living area. If you’re not a fan of the solid steps, no worries. They’re only at the front. The rear entry has the more traditional trailer steps. 

Lowlights

There are a few things that I didn’t like about this trailer, including, of course, the small oven. But I’m also no fan of black cabinetry. But that’s why there’s paint. 

Keystone

I’ve written this before, but there are a lot of features in the Keystone product line that really do stand out. Those start with the fact that all current production models feature at least 200 watts of solar on the roof. This trailer, too, has a number of outlets ready to work with an inverter. if you go that route. That means you can use 120-volt items when you’re off the grid, depending on the battery situation. 

The standard system on this trailer is simply that 200-watt panel. But you can upgrade to a system with 400 watts of rooftop solar and a 2000-watt inverter. Further, Keystone has partnered with Battle Born Batteries’ Dragonfly® brand and is making lithium batteries available directly through dealerships. 

Essentially this means that you can buy a complete system from a dealership and leave and go boondocking that night, rather than fiddling with all the various components and hoping you get it right. And, when you don’t, having your spouse doing the “I told you so” dance. 

One of the keystone features (hehe) here is the company’s “Blade Pure™” air conditioning system. Essentially, this puts a residential-style air filter in the air conditioning system, thereby filtering the air. It’s surprising that this is such a big deal, as this should just be how things are. But Keystone is the only brand I know of that’s doing this. 

Further, Keystone has their own air conditioning venting and air distribution system that the company claims offers up to 20 percent better air delivery and performance. 

There are a number of other features Keystone is doing with their “Innovation Labs” which, I feel, really do add a lot of value and make a positive difference in the company’s RV products. 

Boondocking and travel access

While I don’t believe you can get to the front pantry with the slide in, the rest of the Keystone Outback 271UFK is pretty accessible even in road mode.

Also, for boondocking this wouldn’t be a bad choice. There are 54 gallons of fresh water storage. Also, you can still get a propane-electric RV refrigerator in this model. A 12-volt fridge comes standard.

But with even the standard 200 watts of solar, if you did get the propane-electric gas absorption fridge you might be fully set for off-grid camping, depending on the weather and all of that.

Conclusions

The floor plan of the Keystone Outback 271UFK has a lot of interior storage and some nice features, including those inherent with the Keystone brand. 

I have seen other brands with the black cabinets quickly go to a more neutral color—but Outback’s sticking to their guns apparently. I just don’t get the use of such dark colors in a small space. 

Keystone’s Outback has some strong features. Also, this has been a strong floor plan for others, so it should be here too. That’s especially true when you consider the king-sized bed, which is pretty unique here. 

More from Tony

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.

If you’re RV shopping here are some tips on RV shopping from a former RV salesperson—me!

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. He also works closely with a number of RV manufacturers to get an inside look at how things are done and is a brand ambassador for Rockwood Mini Lite with his wife, Peggy.

You can also check out his RV podcast with Peggy. 

These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. They are based on information from a single unit and may not reflect your actual experience. Shop your RV and dealership carefully before making a buying decision. 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.

Got an RV we need to look at? Contact us today and let us know in the form below – thank you!

##RVDT1959

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Roger Spalding
2 months ago

Tony, I count myself among the lucky who get to read your reviews every day. As you have stated on several occasions, you do not get to personally visit each rig prior to writing your columns. In this case, I believed that this has worked against you. As Josh Winters has mentioned in his reviews, Keystone cabinetry, which appears black on screen or in photos, is actually dark brown. I believe that is the case with this Outback. If one looks closely at the kitchen cabinet photos, which receive more daylight than other areas of the RV, it is pretty apparent that the cabinetry is brown. I have read how much you dislike black cabinets in other reviews of yours. In this case, I believe you’re mistaken. Of course, if I am wrong, I apologize. Next time you speak to Uncle Josh, ask him. If memory serves, he will confirm the color of the cabinets.

Roger Spalding
2 months ago
Reply to  Tony Barthel

Tony, nothing would make me (and your followers) happier than to see you and the missus visiting more rigs. Your photography is usually superior to that provided by the company, and your insight always enlightening. Thanks for getting back to me. Have a great football season!

Drew
2 months ago

I don’t think a walk in pantry is a good idea for a 27′ trailer. I’d much rather have more counter space with a smaller “cupboard” type pantry.

Bob Palin
2 months ago

A king size bed is 76×80″, this is some sort of RV “King Size” and I bet there are very few aftermarket mattresses in that size, something that is usual an essential immediate upgrade.

Rosy
2 months ago

50 years ago my in-laws had a front kitchen travel trailer with a rear bathroom. They had no slides and the two “sofas” pulled out to allow twin beds. Overnight guests slept on camp cots in the screen porch. A front kitchen was, and still is, a nice thing to have.

Snayte
2 months ago

I like the idea but put the bed in the back just like it would be in the front. I really do not need a second slide.

Scott R. Ellis
2 months ago

You forgot the quotes around “king” bed. 75″ long? Come on.

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