Thursday, September 21, 2023


RV sneak preview: 2024 Ember RV Touring Edition 29MRS— A flat 5er with attention to detail

Today’s RV review is of the Ember Touring Edition 29MRS. This is a new trailer floor plan for the company and one that I would describe more like a flat fifth wheel. Sort of. In many ways this floor plan resembles what you might find in a fifth wheel but, instead, is a travel trailer. 

For some travelers, a travel trailer makes more sense. You can tow with some vans or a pickup with a camper shell, for example. And the stairs in a fifth wheel can be tough for some individuals, as well. Or you don’t want something as tall. Lots of reasons. 

Ember Touring Edition

The 29MRS is the largest and latest member of Ember Recreational Vehicle’s newer Touring Edition series. These new offerings are more traditional travel trailers than the inaugural Overland series from the company in some ways, but absolutely offer a lot of the features that have made Ember such a unique brand. 

For example, the hitch on these trailers is an adjustable hitch, allowing you to easily adjust the height of the hitch based on the tow vehicle, which is really smart. These also feature Lippert solid stance stabilizer jacks, which are much more rugged than the typical stabilizer jacks on almost every other travel trailer. 

In fact, these jacks are the only ones I’ve come across that actually are rated to be raised and lowered with a power drill. Read your manual: The typical stabilizer jacks on most travel trailers very specifically tell you not to do this. Plus, these jacks are just better made. 

There is also a nice powder-coated metal front locker on the Touring Edition models, in addition to some significant space in the front pass-through storage compartment. That’s also where you’ll find the Nautilus water hook-up system for these, which mimics many fifth wheels and is not something you’ll typically find in a travel trailer. 

Stargazer window

Another thing I’ve loved about the Ember line has been their Stargazer window. This is a window above the bed at the front that incorporates a shade and a bug screen. You can tilt this window up for airflow or just lie back and look at the stars. Hence the name Stargazer. 

This dual-pane window is retained on the Touring Edition models, also. This makes so much more sense than a windshield in a travel trailer. 

Ember is also utilizing the same dual-pane windows throughout the line in all places. These aren’t cheap, but they really are good. All the windows incorporate both the blind and the bug screen and can be opened wide for airflow. You can open either or move them such that a portion of the window is blocked by the shade or by the screen. Your choice. 

When we visited with Christopher Barth, one of the co-founders of Ember RV, it was about 80° F and he swung open the windows in the trailer. The size of the windows and the cross breeze immediately made it comfortable in there, so we never bothered with the two air conditioners that are also part of this rig. 

Devilish details

There are a tremendous number of little details in the Ember Touring Edition that are absolutely worth noting. For example, the company seats the vents for the air conditioning in a foam enclosure that is then sealed with metallic tape. This is done to prevent the vent from dislodging, as happens in many RVs. 

The ceiling of this trailer is an Azdel substrate, a man-made composite that is impervious to water damage. That material is also used in a floor laminate that Christopher and I stood on, which proved very sturdy. The advantage of this construction, again, is being resistant to water damage. 

I love that there are no ducts on the floor of the trailer for the furnace. They are, instead, on the cabinets. 

The counter extension on the island is flush with the countertop. I don’t know why this is so hard for so much of the rest of the industry to get right. 

Interior lighting dimmable

The interior lighting is universally dimmable. There are also motion-sensing lights in places like the pantry. 

I also like the flip-up side pockets next to the couch along the back of the trailer. 


You know I have to mention that there’s a real 22” oven in the kitchen. I asked Christopher how big a cost increase it is to go with the larger oven. Honestly, less than I had spent on lunch that day. 

For the difference this makes in the user experience, a cost bump that tiny shows that the RV companies that use the smaller oven simply don’t care about your enjoyment. It’s that simple. 

There’s also something brand-new—a convection microwave that also serves as an air fryer. This is standard and is a new item from Furrion. I have a similar one in my house and, frankly, you could easily get away with no oven with this. But you get this. And a real oven.

The difference it makes that the Ember decision makers actually use their products is evident in details throughout their products. 

Front room

The front space on this trailer is also really unique. There’s a Murphy bed. But before you Murphy-haters start your hating, know that this could just be left down as a permanent queen-sized bed all the time. 

But for those of you who aren’t Murphy blasters, know that this room could be a whole separate space to get away from the others in the camper. 

When the bed is up, you have a couch which has two Lagun tables. You could use this as a separate dining area or office, or just a place to get away from everybody. 

There is a closet at the front of the space which has a provision for a washer-dryer, if that’s important. 

There is a hanging closet on each side of the bed. There’s also a drawer on top of a space behind this cabinet for those things you’re not supposed to be looking at right before you go to bed. Or you could put a CPAP here, as well, and, yes, there’s also a 120vac power outlet on each side. 

I put the bed down and had no issues walking around—there was plenty of space even for folks who take up plenty of space. 

But with the bed up, ooh la la. Now you’ve got a spot where you can change your clothes without being a gymnast. Nice. 


Ember RV products already have what I think should be a required safety feature—their lighting. On Ember RVs, the upper marker lights flash with the turn signals, as do side marker lights, giving a clear indication to other drivers that you’re coming their way. 

The Touring Edition has something else that’s game-changing. There is an optional Lane Change Assist feature that works similarly to the one on many modern vehicles. It uses radar sensors at the back of the trailer to determine if someone is occupying the lane next to you. 

If they are, there are orange marker lights on the front of the trailer that you can see which notify you not to make that lane change. I’ve never seen anything like this on a towable RV. It’s literally one of the best safety features I can think of. Kudos to you, Ember. 

Boondocking and travel access

Even though these aren’t specifically designed for overlanding, they are quite capable when it comes to boondocking. For example, all the Touring Edition models feature at least 200 watts of solar on the roof along with a 2,000-watt inverter. That may be all many campers need. The trailers themselves are designed to accommodate lithium battery systems right from the get-go. 

But that’s not required, so you can tailor the power system installed in your version to your own camping needs. 

These also feature the Showermi$er system, which redirects water back into your fresh water system while you’re waiting for the water to get hot at the shower. We have this in our travel trailer and we love it. It works very well indeed. 

As for travel access, well, that’s where this unit isn’t the best. You won’t really be able to get to the kitchen or the dining space with the slides in.

My thoughts

There are so many little details in how this trailer is built and designed that I think it’s absolutely worth seeking out if you’re in the market for something like this. 

One of the things that impresses me is that all the decision-makers at Ember either own their own camper or use a camper for getaways. That is highly unusual in the RV industry, but the results of this kind of decision-making absolutely show up in the final design. 

We got to see partially-built models and just the steel straps that hold in the water tanks show that these are built better and designed for real-world use. And that’s not typical in the RV industry, either. 

I do not have a chart for this model as some details are still being finalized. The model I saw was a pre-production example. 

Listen to my podcast episode with Ashley Bontrager and Christopher Barth from Ember RV.

More from Tony

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

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. 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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  1. Our favorite fifth-wheel floorplan! The REAL queen-size bed, the table and chairs in place of a booth dinette, and the Shower Miser are absolute must-have items for us. But (there’s always a BUT), without specs or any description or photos of the underside or roof of the RV, I will not be placing an order anytime soon. As an engineer, what is below the skin and frame is as important as the interior. How long and wide is it? What is the GVWR? What type of suspension does it have? Tire brand and size? Tank sizes? One dump valve or, heaven forbid! (as my grandmother would say), two dump valves? Propane tank size? Is the battery compartment insulated or heated for those optional lithium batteries? How much solar can be added to the factory panel? PMW or MPPT solar controller and its max. capacity? 120vac or 12vdc fridge standard or an option? Tankless water heater? So, more questions than answers at this point, fully realizing that Tony saw only a prototype.

  2. Tell me I’m not seeing the cheap cable-driven slide out mechanism in picture 15! I’m with Bob P on the skylight…only for me it just another hole in the roof to leak or on cold mornings to be dripping condensation into the coach or on me. We don’t want a tradition oven at all…would much rather have a cooktop with drawers for storage underneath. Not being able to open the fridge without putting out slides is a complete deal breaker for us. We had a 5ver with this floorplan but the fridge could be opened slides in. It worked even though the rest of the kitchen was unusable. I assume the space for the W/D is not enough for a stacked unit? Would require a far less efficient combo? I always laugh at the nitrogen filled tires marketing ploy. Almost 80% of the air we breath is nitrogen anyway. The near 20% Oxygen has no material effect inside our tires.

    Net…a nice product.
    Above are just my nitpicks…well…a couple are deal breakers.

    • Actually cable slides are pretty reliable. They were something we almost never had issues with at the dealership I worked at. The problem came down the road if/when the cable stretched and nobody bothered to adjust it. But we never had a cable slide system failure or issue to my recollection.

  3. First let me say it’s a great review! Now my nitpicks, what is the first three pics? Ok I’m a Murphy bed hater, why have a Murphy in the bedroom? I don’t have any use for the sky light as I go to bed to sleep and I don’t need the sunlight to wake me up at 5 AM. Other than those complaints I like it. Did I miss the specs or were they omitted intentionally? The couch in the bedroom seems a waste of time and money, if you had guests are you going to have them sitting on the couch while you holler back and forth to converse, if they stay overnight
    (Which I discourage) where do thy sleep? That’s all!


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