Today’s review is of a smaller RV, the Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 145RB. This is a very small and light travel trailer that’s also quite affordable at about $21,021 base MSRP. If you can find one.
That big “if” factor is more and more common with smaller and less expensive rigs, quite honestly. What’s happening as the demand for RVs is staying high is manufacturers are making more of the higher-dollar rigs and concentrating less on these smaller rigs. So there are some circumstances where, if you don’t see one of these in a dealership, forget about it.
Highlights of the Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 145RB
I would also imagine that it takes a specific type of buyer to like this rig. It’s fairly small, but that also means it’s relatively inexpensive. There is a decent amount of seating on the camp side, thanks to there being a dinette and a couch that form one long seating area on that side.
In some ways the floor plan of the Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 145RB almost reminds me of a pickup camper in the overall size of the thing. But that also means that, weighing in at just 2,465 pounds, it is also well within the towing capacity of a big number of vehicles. With a tongue weight of just 205 pounds, this puts this trailer squarely in a place where many SUVs could easily tow it.
However, if you’re looking at a family trailer, this might take some thinking. For example, there’s really only sleeping space for two in here, or maybe three if the third person is a smaller child. The two adults who sleep here should be aware that they’re sleeping on the dinette, and that’s the choice.
Well, actually, if there’s just one occupant they can sleep on that long couch which would also make one heck of a day bed.
The kitchen is a compromise
Again, the kitchen is more of a compromise only in that there’s a decent amount of counter space in here. But it would be significantly more with a flush-mount sink and a flush-mount stove. But that’s not what you get, though I also wouldn’t expect that at this price.
I was surprised by all the cabinets that basically halo the trailer on three sides. Over the counter, day bed and dinette, there is a place for your stuff, as George Carlin was famous for saying.
Surprisingly, there’s also a relatively decent pantry in the back that could also serve as your closet. This would be the only place to hang things, if that’s something you want to do. It’s nicely located right at the back entrance, so it would be a good place to hang a thing or two. Or you could use it as a pantry instead.
But not bad in terms of interior storage—all things considered.
Further, the one outside baggage door leads to the underside of that big couch. You can also get to that compartment from above by lifting the couch cushion.
Good things from Jayco
Since this is a Jayco product, a lot of the things that make the brand stand out are present here, even in something at this price point.
For example, there are Goodyear Endurance tires and JaySMART™ lighting. JaySMART lighting flashes the side marker lights and upper marker lights in concert with the turn signals. I think this is a huge safety feature, quite frankly.
The baggage doors and luggage compartment are all keyed alike—smart.
There’s also Jayco’s warranty of two years end-to-end, three years structural. And the company is known for the strength of their roof build. Speaking of quality, even the toilet is porcelain. This is a surprise in a rig at this end of the price spectrum.
There are a lot of storage cabinets and that pantry. But cargo carrying on any small single-axle trailer is going to be limited. In this case, Jayco says 735 pounds. That’s certainly not bad at all. But it will be something to be mindful of, especially if you’re towing at the upper limit of a less-capable vehicle.
While I like the porcelain toilet, I don’t like the wall board material in the shower. Yeah, yeah, this is supposed to be waterproof. But I’ve seen it not last as long as a plastic shower enclosure in too many circumstances.
As mentioned, I also wish they had used flush-mount pieces for the sink and two-burner stove.
In fact, the Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 145RB would really be better with a two compartment 12-volt portable refrigerator. And wouldn’t it be nifty if the kitchen and that long couch swapped sides so that 12-volt fridge could be reached through a compartment door on the camp side?
Boondocking and travel access in the Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 145RB
Being a trailer with no slide, obviously it’s great for boondocking. Well, except that there are ten gallons of fresh water storage aboard. This really is a trailer meant for being in full-hookup sites. That is a bummer because this could be a great boondocking rig otherwise.
If you’re thinking of getting a smaller rig like this and see one at the dealership, it might be time to whip out the checkbook.
But I also miss the RV shows being more prevalent. I know that a lot of people buy an RV and then buy a replacement for that RV thinking one thing was true when their circumstances were not what they had anticipated.
In fact, this brings me to a prediction. But who knows if I will be right, as my crystal ball has been in the shop and parts are in short supply. One of the things that was a universal truth is that first-time buyers often seem to have a different expectation than the reality that they ultimately encounter.
As such, we would often see buyers returning after a short period of time hoping to upgrade or change the rig they bought. In fact, I sold three RVs to the same family for this very reason. They ended up finally buying the one I had suggested in the first place based on what they told me they wanted.
While a lot of prognosticators are guessing that there will be a lot of RVs on lots, I agree, because people simply bought the wrong rig. This will keep new RV sales strong and also keep the used market strong.
Buy your third rig first …
So, buy your third rig first. In fact, here are some tips for shopping for an RV that I hope will help.
And, perhaps, this is the right RV for some people. It certainly has some nice features and a usable layout, and there are people for whom this might be just the right fit.
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, Peggy.
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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