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Winnebago announces all-electric motorhome concept, the e-RV

Winnebago took the opportunity of the Florida RV SuperShow in Tampa to announce a concept all-electric motorhome dubbed the Winnebago e-RV. This all-electric RV sets the stage for where the company may be headed in the future. 

This new vehicle, based on the full-size Ford Transit van, is completely electric, zero emission, with no propane or other liquid fuels aboard whatsoever. On hand to make the announcement was Ashis Bhattacharya, Winnebago’s Senior Vice President of Advanced Technology and Enterprise Marketing, who shared the company’s ideas asking, “What would an RV look like if designed for the electric age?”

The e-RV runs on 350 volts

While few specific details were announced, one of the areas the company did announce was that the whole thing runs on 350 volts of electricity. That includes the heater, air conditioner and other appliances. The vehicle is powered by an 86 kWh battery. 

For comparison, a base Tesla Model 3 mid-size sedan has a 60 kWh, and the new Model X Plaid, the most powerful car the company makes, uses a 95 kWh battery. That is the same size as the battery in the company’s SUV, the Tesla Model X. 

The goal of the e-RV concept is to provide “Efficient comfort and functionality to experience the outdoors.” 

A smartphone can control the systems

On board there are proprietary control systems allowing the user to manage the charging and supply systems. It was also stated that you can use a smartphone to control the systems. Further, there were many mentions of a high-performance wireless system enabling you to connect on the road. 

The vehicle is a concept at the moment—so details like pricing, availability and actual systems are yet to be determined. Further, Winnebago is promising to continue to refine the vehicle before it actually becomes available. 

Bhattacharya described the driving experience as extraordinarily vibration free, which is what one would expect of an EV. For example, riding in a Tesla compared to most vehicles is a very different experience from riding in a typical piston engine vehicle. 

The e-RV is marketed as environmentally friendly

There are other nods to environmental friendliness, including recycled flooring made of cork and recycled tires, and reclaimed wood surfaces.

Winnebago also addressed charging in that this vehicle can be charged in virtually any circumstance it would encounter including, of course, popular EV charging stations, but also campgrounds and home chargers. 

In another story on the vehicle, it was estimated that driving range would be about 125 miles which Winnebago says is sufficient for many RVers.

Details limited

Of course, details are limited at this time. But these concepts are interesting to see how companies are working to overcome the real challenges of an all-electric RV. 

At present there is an electric version of the Ford Transit van on which this vehicle is based. That vehicle sports a 68 kWh battery and has an estimated range (by Ford) of 126 miles. Winnebago did say that much of what they were working on was independent of the electric Transit. 

*****

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.

I have also added a specific thread about electric RV here.

Tony comes to RVTravel having worked at an RV dealership and been a life long 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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Donald N Wright
4 months ago

If there is a problem, just take it to your friendly Ford dealership.

Bob M
4 months ago

Before they jump on Elect RV’s. They should work on Hybrid RV’s. Not plug in Hybrids. As they learn from hybrid vehicles and technology gets better. Little by little they can move in the direction of electric vehicles. Next thing you know the electric companies will want more money from us to improve their electric grid. Then there’s the cost to up grade your homes electric panel and wiring. What do renters do?

David Ciummo
4 months ago

What I’m hearing about cost is $$$$$$$$$$$$$

KellyR
4 months ago

125 miles would only get me half way out of the state. Not the bug out vehicle that I now rely upon my current Class B for. My daughter’s daily commute is right around 125 miles a day, if she doesn’t stop by the grocery store on the way home. EV might get there one day but has a long way to go.

Tom
4 months ago

I’m wondering how the ride is going to be “extraordinarily vibration free”. Unless this thing has the suspension of a Rolls Royce, you’ll be driving on the same roads as everyone else. Most piston engine vehicles I’ve ever driven don’t produce that much vibration, not counting vehicles with a high profile cam installed.

TexasScout
4 months ago

86kwh battery? That’s it? In a vehicle that has 4 times the frontal area and 3 times the weight of a Tesla? and on top of that you run the AC, heating, cooking etc on the same battery. I’m guessing 200 mile range tops and that’s running WITH the wind. I hope It has a receiver hitch to put your gas generator to charge it.

Tommy Molnar
4 months ago

125 miles? Hahaha. We took off on a “Sunday Drive” this past weekend just to while away a few hours and guess what. When we got home we had traveled EXACTLY 125 miles. And when it comes to RV travel, no one I know travels only 125 miles, unless that’s the distance to your next “must stop” destination. While all these companies seem to want to jump on the ‘save-the-planet’ bandwagon, I don’t see them doing a land-office business selling these gizmo-laden machines. Like Bob P, I’m sticking to my tried and true, trusty ICE powered p/u towing my trusty TT. Plus, I want room to stretch my legs when we stop, which doesn’t seem to be an option in this puddle jumper.

Bob p
4 months ago

I went to your forum and didn’t see anything about this. For me it shouldn’t take more than 4-5 days to get from south central TN to central FL at 125 miles per day. Of course we could just camp in the back yard all winter, no thanks I’ll stick with my ICE powered RV that gets 9 mpg and takes 10 minutes to “recharge”. Even at $3+ per gallon for gas it’s still cheaper than buying an EV. Just say’n

Judy
4 months ago

The single user interface is sleek but if part of it stops functioning I wonder whether the whole thing would need to be replaced. In my own class B, the proprietary components have been the most trouble.

Glenn
4 months ago

A range of 125 miles would not meet the needs of any of my camping acquaintances. I’m sure the range will suffer as the battery is depleted using the a/c , heat, microwave, et al.

Good concept.

robert
4 months ago

I can see now that when you pull in to a campground. The clerk will have dollar signs in there eyes as they charge you for all the electric you use. there is campgrounds out there that won’t let use your ac and this would drive them crazy.