Saturday, December 2, 2023


RV Review: 2022 Lance 2185 ‘flexhouse’

Today’s RV review is of the 2022 Lance 2185, but I don’t really want to write “bunkhouse” just because this is more a “flexhouse” trailer. Hey, there’s a new word! Copyright 2022 Tony the RV Geek. So there. 

Flexhouse trailer

Now it’s a real thing. But this Lance offers some interesting flexible spaces and use cases that aren’t necessarily common in all trailers, especially ones this small. 

Starting at the back, the Lance 2185 actually has three bunks, each capable of holding 200 pounds of human. Or dog. Or orangutan, if that’s your thing. 

The bottom bunk is actually a mattress on the floor, which many college attendees will be very familiar with. Then there are two additional bunks that flip up to convert the sleeping area into a rear cargo area. 

Further, there’s a door at the very back of this model to access that space. 

But the front of this Lance also offers flexible space, starting with the fact that there’s a couch by day and then a bed by night. 

You could sort of call this a Murphy bed, but really it’s a mattress that folds, as it mostly remains in place. At night you flip down the sofa and unfold the mattress and now you have your front sleeping space. 

If you prefer, the standard issue in this trailer is a fixed queen-sized bed. But that folding setup with a couch by day really does expand the number of seating choices you and your guests can make. Plus, I mean, a blue couch. Oooh la la!

Windshield up front in Lance trailers

While I’m not the biggest fan in the world of travel trailers with windshields up front, I do make an exception for Lance and r·pod only because the windshield is a composite material instead of glass. Further, the windshield does open for air flow. Also, there’s a screen as well as a shade that covers the space. 

If I never ever saw another towable RV with a windshield I wouldn’t think the world was in a worse place. Though I also have a front window in my own 1970 Aristocrat Land Liner. But Aristocrat had the good sense to put a cover over the windshield. 


I was surprised how many Lance towables I saw as I traversed the country this year since, at the present time, they’re all made in California. But Lance has an enviable reputation as a builder of quality trailers. 

Part of the reason for that includes the fact that their cabinetry and some other components are all cut and shaped with computer-aided cutting machinery instead of by hand. In fact the walls and ceilings and anything with an opening or major cut is done with computer-controlled systems. Further, they wire their campers and trailers much like a car company would with consistent wiring and on a jig so the wiring itself is right each time. 

Lance trailers have lockable storage compartments for the batteries, with one being on either side. You can fit this with two lithium batteries. Since they’re in these compartments, they’re less likely to get misappropriated by a midnight rider. 

Provision for three propane tanks

Further, there is provision for three propane tanks up front, with two being connected and a third sitting there waiting for you to run out. In the middle of the night. When you want the heater. Don’t ask how I know. But know that I suggest wearing pajamas or at least having them accessible so you don’t scare the bears. 

Lance uses a number of pieces that have their roots in European design, including the windows all around, including the windshield. They also use an entry door that I’ve seen in European coaches that incorporates a trash can. It’s pretty slick. 

In fact, this camper features two entry doors—also pretty slick. 

One of the other things I like is that Lance gives you a choice of interior upholstery color including blue and a sort of copper color called, respectively, Lapis and Bronzite. 

Boondocking and travel access in the Lance 2185

There is also a Showermiser water saving system. You can heat that water with a Truma tankless water heater if you check that option box.

You can get a single 190-watt solar panel or opt in a second one, as well, to charge the available dual lithium batteries.

With dual entry doors, you can access the entire interior without issue, so this is definitely travel accessible.

In conclusion

Lance products tend to be higher on the price scale than the average RV. However, many of the people I speak to who have them are very pleased with what they got. 

Interestingly, Lance has established itself in California and is one of the last RV manufacturers still waking up in the Golden State. But there are winds of change out there. Lance announced plans to open a plant in Decatur, Indiana, to supply their travel trailers to the eastern half of the country. 

While they made no statements to this end, I wonder how long the challenges of manufacturing in California will keep the West Coast plant’s doors open? We’ve already learned that Lazy Daze has simply shut the doors and walked away. There is a huge history of manufacturing RVs in California, but not lately. Names like Alfa Leisure and Aristocrat are now in the history books only, and there are many, many others. 

Lance has a solid reputation and makes a good product

The bottom line is that Lance makes a good product with a solid reputation. I can’t imagine the addition of a Midwest manufacturing operation is going to change that in any appreciable way. Plus, we can all speculate about things including the future, and that speculation isn’t worth a plugged nickel, quite frankly. 

As for this trailer, it offers a flexible number of use cases that I really like. Those things are packaged in a size that might be appealing to some because it opens the doors to the number of places that it will fit, along with the number of vehicles that can tow it well. 

In many ways this is a logical competitor to the Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BRDS that I saw when I was in Indiana. There are strong reasons to consider that trailer or this one. I can see that certain details and design choices could make a big difference to some individuals. 

What would you choose if you were in this market space? And then another choice is the Ember RV 191MSL, which is almost in a class by itself, but also is a logical competitor. 

I love flexibility and I love choice—you get both 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 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!


Tony Barthel has been a life-long RV enthusiast and travels part-time with his wife where they also produce a podcast, write about RVs and love the RV lifestyle.



0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe to comments
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Roger Spalding (@guest_202660)
1 year ago

Lance continues to futz around with low imagination travel trailers. With a 7 camper capacity, this RV’s miniscule kitchen sink and near worthless RV fridge are completely inadequate. Additionally, it remains a mystery to me why Lance has not made any attempt to increase the capacity of its tanks. This rig kind is really designed for camp service only. In response to my humble request long ago, Tony reviewed the Lance 2465 (which I like alot); a very good couples camper and the top of Lance’s line. Even there, the tank capacities were only adequate for a couple. Lance’s vague product plan seems to wander aimlessly. I believe this damages its reputation for building good, solid rigs. Lance needs to build a 5thW badly; to give it something to shoot for, and to maintain any industry ambition at all.

Sue (@guest_202643)
1 year ago

Vanity outside the bathroom is a no for me.

Lee Brandt (@guest_202619)
1 year ago

We love our 2019 Lance 1995 very well built. Only question is the slide mechanism is very problematic.

Debbie (@guest_202597)
1 year ago

21 ft is the interior length. Total length is 26’1″ per Lance’s website.

Bob M (@guest_202561)
1 year ago

While Lance makes nice travel trailers, their prices at the 2022 Hershey RV show were outrageous.

Bob p (@guest_202525)
1 year ago

I wish someone would explain why prison gray is the preferred color inside RVs, or for that matter the exterior of vehicles. To me that is a depressing color and I immediately walk out of an RV when I walk in and see those colors. Everything brown was bad enough, but prison gray??

Tommy Molnar (@guest_202521)
1 year ago

All I needed to see was how a 21′ trailer can ‘sleep’ seven people (with 45 gallons of fresh) to move on.

Bob p (@guest_202951)
1 year ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

That’s sleeping capacity not living capacity, once the sun comes up everybody goes outside and they use the campground facilities, not the RV. Lol

Sign up for the

RVtravel Newsletter

Sign up and receive 3 FREE RV Checklists: Set-Up, Take-Down and Packing List.