Are Winnebagos worth it? Winnebagos are no stranger to RV culture and lifestyle in general, as they have produced some of the best RVs and motorhomes that many campers and RVers have sworn to their lives. However, with many other RV brands and manufacturers that can create better and much more efficient RVs and motorhomes, some people cannot help. Still, question if owning a Winnebago is actually worth it. This article will help you understand why owning a Winnebago is worth it by checking the different comparisons I will be doing between Winnebagos and other RVs.
|Price||Most expensive: $440,000Most affordable: $80,118||Most expensive: $164,470 (adjusted for inflation)Most affordable: $38,000||Most expensive: $135,128Most affordable: $79,000|
|Features and Specifications||Dimensions: 25.6 feetFeatures: Slideout, 2-door fridge, double burner induction and LP range cooktops, stainless steel sink, huge bath and wardrobe, Murphy+ bedsRun by: diesel||Dimensions: 28 ft x 8.1 feet x 9.9 feetFeatures: Corian countertops, new colors for upholstery, can sleep up to 6-8 people comfortablyRun by: diesel||Dimensions: 21 ft x 85 inches x 123 inchesFeatures: 60 x 80” beds, small dinette, small dry bath, cabinets, Goodyear Endurance tires, JaySMART application integrationRun by: diesel|
|Unique Features||Trademark slide outs for bigger sleeping areas to accommodate large numbers, My Winnebago AE app||Airstream Care App, constant innovations and keeping the balance between vintage and modern in terms of aesthetics and logistics||Jayco Smart integrations to the RV, Jayco app that can be accessed for troubleshooting, legless dinettes, bigger beds for couples|
|Customer Reviews||4.2 on RV Insider||4.4 on RV Insider||3.8 on RV Insider|
Price: The Main Deciding Factor in Buying an RV
The first thing that everyone considers when buying RVs is the price. It is understandable because not everyone has thousands of dollars available for payment, and RVs are expensive among different types of recreational vehicles. Most RVers and campers want to buy an RV model with many features and amenities for a more affordable price point.
Typically, RVs can range in price from $10,000 to $300,000, depending on the style and features included. A reasonably equipped camper trailer that is to be pulled behind a truck may cost $20,000 to $30,000 in total. The average RV cost of a fifth-wheel maybe $40,000. The majority of motorhomes are priced between $100,000 and $150,000.
As you can see, there is a significant difference in pricing based on the type of vehicle you are most interested in purchasing. To begin, filter down the types of RVs available. Next, the manufacturer and whether you desire a new or used vehicle should be considered. These considerations will once again play a role in determining the final price you will be required to pay.
A Winnebago Winnie Minnie 22M costs around $80,118 and more, depending on the model’s status. This is considered as the lowest price for a Winnebago RV model, which means anyone who has around $100,000 can have a decent-sized RV, including all the necessary additional features, repairs, and registration fees for the state. This particular model is a great buy because you can get a lot for what you paid for as a class C motorhome.
On the other hand, a Jayco Jay Flight Swift travel trailer costs around $14,998, the cheapest model in all of Jayco’s RVs and motorhomes. Comparing it with the Winnie Minnie 22M, of course, the price is lower but comparing it to a similarly-built motorhome such as the Jayco Conquest motorhome, it costs around $119,990. Still, the Winnebago is the cheapest.
Lastly, the cheapest Airstream trailer is the Basecamp trailer, which costs around $38,000, around the same price as a brand-new SUV. This trailer can fit up to two people. For comparison, a Winnie Minnie 22M can only fit up to four people. Still, if you want a bigger yet cheaper Airstream trailer option, the Flying Cloud can fit up to eight people comfortably for a cost of $79,000.
Based on the prices and other relevant figures mentioned above, Airstream has the most affordable option with the Flying Cloud. The most expensive is the Jayco Conquest, at almost $120,000. The Winnebago sits right in the middle, but again, the features are not compromised, and it can fit a small family quite easily without any troubles at all.
Let us now talk about their most expensive models from the least expensive models. Winnebago Horizon is the most expensive model in their entire collection. A class A motorhome costs almost $440,000.
In addition to being visually appealing and modern, the interior design, as with other RVs, incorporates numerous space-saving elements, such as footrests that lift out of the coach and cabinet doors that push out of the way when they are not in use. It is possible to conceal the television in the bedroom with the flick of a switch, which is located on the same control panel as the controls for the adjustable bed.
This luxurious machine powers the Cummins diesel engine, which produces 450 horsepower and is mated to an Allison six-speed automatic transmission. The Horizon weighs little over 34,000 pounds dry, and it is equipped with a full set of air brakes with an anti-lock braking system (ABS).
The Horizon’s dashboard has been fitted with an infotainment center with a 10.4-inch touchscreen. GPS, trip recording, a radio, Bluetooth, a compass, back and side view cameras, and other features. In addition to the 41 feet 1 inch and 44 feet 3-inch lengths. The models in question are the 40A and 42Q.
On the other hand, the 2022 Pinnacle is Jayco’s most expensive model on their roster. Priced at $135,218, it is their latest model as well. The Pinnacle is one of the most opulent recreational vehicles available in the Jayco portfolio. It comes with quality towing equipment, and a full-time warranty coverage rounds out this luxury fifth wheel’s appeal.
Lastly, The Land Yacht is the most expensive offering that Airstream has on its lineup. In conjunction with renowned design studio Officina Italiana Design, the Land Yacht is without a doubt the most intricately sumptuous Airstream Travel Trailer ever created.
The very last brand new Land Yacht, which is now only available as a special limited edition, will roll out of their production facility in the summer of 2016. Over the previous 50 years, the Land Yacht has been their most prestigious travel trailer model.
And there are only a little more than a dozen new apartments left on the market right now. A single unit was priced at $146,362 back in 2014, and it might have cost much higher in 2022 since it is a limited edition one.
All of that illustrious lineage could only imply one thing for the Land Yacht: it was a showpiece. The 28-foot trailer, designed to seem like a luxury watercraft, could accommodate six people and was outfitted with boat-deck plank flooring, LED lighting, and Corian worktops. With a pillow-top queen mattress, a 30-inch flatscreen television, and plenty of under-the-bed storage, the master bedroom was a relaxing retreat.
The technology and aesthetics were likewise of the highest caliber. A powered pedestal table moved the dining room table out of the way to make more space, and a powered outdoor awning made shade more readily available in the summer months. The interior was available in two color schemes: dark wood with white accents or lighter wood with dark gray sitting fabrics.
Now that the most affordable and the most expensive models are presented here, I can safely say that Winnebagos sit right in the middle, with Jaycos and Airstreams either becoming the least expensive or the most affordable RV brands in the market today. That means with a decent amount of money, you can have a Winnebago model that is perfect for your budget and needs.
Features and Specifications: Getting Down the Specifics
I had discussed some of the common features in some of the models mentioned above when I compared the prices. Still, I will discuss each brand’s common features here in detail. That also includes the specifications such as weight, dimensions, the engines used, their fuel choices, and so on. This will further help you decide if owning a Winnebago is really worth it.
It is important to know what they feature in their models because it concerns your safety, ease of use, and comfort levels. If you own an RV model that is too big for you, it might be a challenge to find parking, drive the RV, and maintain it due to the sheer size of the dimensions. On the other hand, owning an RV that is too small for your needs can be a problem because of the sheer size and ease of movement.
Since there are a lot of RV models for each brand, I will be taking one representative RV model for each brand so that you will not be confused in comparing one to another. In this case, I will be comparing Winnebago Class C View and Navion, Jayco Jay Flight SLX 7 183RB, and Airstream Flying Cloud and International, as they are the top-selling models for each brand.
The Winnebago View and Navion are available in three different floor plans, each with a slide-out measuring about 25’6″ in length. They are versatile and comfortable. The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter VS30 Diesel Chassis, which achieves an average fuel economy of 16-18 mpg on the highway, underpins the View and Navion, both powerful vehicles with nicely equipped interiors.
When it comes to RV travel for couples and families, the Winnebago View and Navion are the pinnacles in efficiency and luxury. The three Class C floorplans with slide-outs provide various sleeping and living area configurations options. They all come equipped with swivel cab seats for increased seating flexibility in the lounge area, a powered patio awning, and a cab-over bunk for additional sleeping accommodations.
View and Navion floorplans contain fully equipped kitchens with a 10.0 cu. ft. 2-door compressor-driven refrigerator and freezer, a 2-burner induction and LP range cooktop, a dual bowl stainless steel sink, and lighted soft close drawers, among other features.
Winnebago’s View and Navion 24D floor plans offer a U-shaped dinette or theater seating, depending on your personal preference. The 24D boasts a huge full bath in the rear, as well as a large wardrobe. This model has a Murphy+ Bed that can be packed away during the day, leaving a sofa and pedestal table in its place during the evenings.
The Winnebago View and Navion 24V floor plans come with your choice of a TrueComfort+ Sofa or Dual Recliners, depending on your personal preference. Through the flex bed technology, both of the 24V’s rear twin-sized beds may be changed into a single huge bed.
Finally, the Winnebago View and Navion 24J floorplan offer a U-shaped dinette or theater seating, depending on your preference. Located in the rear corner of the 24J, the FROLI premium sleeping system with storage beneath it may be found. It is possible to use the shower while someone else is brushing their teeth in the 24J because it has a vanity outside the bathroom.
Lastly, they also run in diesel which is a great choice for everyone since you will not find it hard to find a diesel station anywhere you go. The View’s industry-leading amenities, including luxury touches and features throughout, ensure that guests have an unmatched Class C experience.
When you are working with a smaller trailer, like the Jay Flight SLX 7 or the Rockwood Geo Pro 16BH, you’re more restricted by the laws of physics in terms of what you can fit within. On the other hand, both corporations have done an excellent job with their packaging.
In Jayco’s example, the bed occupies the whole nose of the vehicle, measuring 60″ x 80″ and being permanently installed. Because of the “east-west” configuration of the trailer, the person closest to the front of the trailer must crawl over the person on the outside.
Depending on the personalities of the two persons involved, this can either be a hardship or a joy. However, keep in mind that there are just four bedrooms in this trailer. There is a curtain across the front of the room for privacy. There is a dinette, although it only has room for two people. Bunk beds along the roadside wall in the back of the house.
A dry bath with a tub/shower, toilet, and no sink is located beyond this point. This is not a big concern to me, but I have shown trailers like this to some folks who were terrified by the lack of a bathroom sink in the movie.
The galley in this photo reflects the price of the trailer, which includes a two-burner surface-mount stovetop with a microwave. There is a microwave and a sink on the upper level, and the three-way refrigerator takes up the space behind the sink on the lower level. Since this is a little refrigerator, you will want to make the most of the pantry, which is a reasonable size and located between the galley and the bathroom, to store as much as possible.
They also included cabinets situated above the galley and the dinette. The pantry provides enough but not great storage space on board. Additionally, there is storage beneath the bed. As I’ve previously stated, there are several aspects of Jayco products that I particularly appreciate, including their Magna Truss roofing, a two-year limited guarantee, a three-year structural warranty, and, perhaps most importantly, their JaySMART lighting system. Goodyear Endurance tires are used on this trailer and several other high-quality features.
Both models have received new overhead storage cabinets. The Flying Cloud has glossy cream-colored doors and the International receiving sliding panels made of reflective laminate. The kitchens have been upgraded with new fixtures, and larger, square-shaped sinks have been installed in place of the circular ones from last year. Blackout bedroom curtains are now included as standard in each of these configurations.
Models of the Flying Cloud can now be selected with Carolina Clay (beige) or Seattle Mist (dark gray) faux-leather upholstery. At the same time, the International can be ordered with Aqua (blue-green) or Seashell (white) faux-leather upholstery, respectively (tan). Besides new bedding, pillowcases, and curtain fabrics, Corian countertops and a variety of new flooring options are included with the purchase of each trailer.
Additionally, all models have increased availability of the unique rear hatch door, which allows for al fresco eating or just an additional point of entry for vacationing families in the rear of the trailer, in addition to interior modifications.
These two models are at the heart of the luxury travel trailer manufacturer’s inventory, and each one is available in a variety of floor layouts to provide consumers the ability to customize their purchases to meet their specific requirements. The Flying Cloud, Airstream’s most popular model, is available in 14 various layouts, with models as long as 30 feet and sleeping accommodations for up to eight people. The International has 12 different floor layouts, each for up to six people.
There are few things more enticing than a classic stainless-steel Airstream travel trailer when it comes to vacationing. Those who believe renting is still a dangerous proposition may find the concept of purchasing their own house away from home, which may be towed or driven to different areas every weekend, appealing. Both are currently available for pre-order at Airstream dealers around the country. Prices for the 2021 Flying Cloud begin at $78,900, while those for the International begin at $91,900.
Based on these models, I can safely assume that while Airstream boasts of luxury and elegance with its revamped interior models, Winnebagos still bring the most common features that a small family will surely appreciate. However, based on the sheer size, Jayco has the biggest dimensions, perfect for large families and groups.
Again, Winnebagos sit right in the middle because Jayco and Airstream have upped the ante with their unique features, which I will discuss in detail in the next header.
Unique Features: What Makes Them Stand Out
The RV market is one fierce and competitive market. The next thing I will discuss is the unique features of each RV model that gets them the boost from the others in the competition. Suppose you are not offering something unique that the others will have difficulty copying you. In that case, that can be your redeeming quality in the market.
Unique features offer you that aura of exclusivity, which is always synonymous with opulence and affluent lifestyles. Since these features are not present in other RV models, you would think that others are missing out on these features that bring you more convenience and ease of movement.
I will be using the same models from the last point of comparison since the unique features I saw are mostly present across the different models in their brand rosters.
First of all, Winnebagos are synonymous with motorhomes, as they have been consistent in releasing model after model of amazing motorhomes, from Class A to Class C. In particular, they are known for their slide-outs, allowing families to sleep comfortably during the night and move around easily during the day. All motorhomes are now equipped with slide-outs, but Winnebagos started incorporating it seamlessly into their floorplans.
Winnebago also has the My Winnebago AE app, which contains a lot of resources for troubleshooting and maintenance purposes, such as tutorials, articles, and tips on how to maintain and fix every issue in all parts of the motorhomes across all of their models. The manufacturers also keep it up-to-date so that people will always be informed about the latest in maintaining and fixing problems in their app.
As for Jayco, they totally stepped it up by enhancing their interiors and exteriors and embracing the powers of smart technology. One is the JaySMART safety lighting system. This distinctive, patent-pending safety feature is standard equipment on all of their 2019 trailers.
Their huge research and development team came up with a means to add many tow vehicle-controlled LED lights to RV exteriors, making it easier to clearly express driving intentions and maneuvers when traveling to a campsite. As of this writing, both Airstream and Winnebago do not have any similar safety features as JaySMART, so I can say that it is very unique only to Jayco models.
They also have a JayCommand Smart RV system, which essentially places various controls on different aspects of the RV in one app that you can use on your phone or tablet. Therefore, it allows you to control several settings in your RV without having to physically do it yourself, such as turning the lights on or off, turning the heater on, checking if your tanks are already full, and so on.
These Smart innovations have set Jayco above the rest in terms of incorporating technology in RVs with their ultimate aim of making their customers’ lives much better and more seamlessly. Lastly, they have the Jayco Wingmate app if you need some help troubleshooting simple to moderate cases in your RV, but you cannot find the right answers.
Jayco has made everything easy for its customers to maintain and fix their RVs without spending too much time and money. This app contains a ton of tutorials, checklists for your trips, including packing and trips, maintenance tips, and so on. You can easily access it on your mobile phones or tablets, so there is no need to worry about rummaging through your storage just to find your RV manuals.
Although the Jay Feather Murphy bed type 24BHM has been updated to be more aerodynamic, the increased external storage space is a significant benefit in a lightweight travel trailer like this one, which is especially important. Incorporating the Modern Farmhouse style into the American Tradition option on Eagle trailers is a significant step forward in the evolution of recreational vehicle interiors.
The Farmhouse White woodwork, Barnwood-style flooring and tables, and mason-jar lighting are just a few of the elements that distinguish it from the rest of the competition.
At first glance, this may not seem like a significant feature, but as you and your family sit down to a meal, you’ll discover just how much more space there is to spread out and relax in comfort. This new function is included as standard equipment on many cars in the 2019 lineup.
Except for luxury Class A coaches, the 2019 Seismic fifth wheel toy hauler and select Pinnacle luxury fifth wheel floorplans include a residential-style walk-in shower with a detachable showerhead as well as a 300-pound capacity fold-down bench, which is uncommon on any RV other than luxury Class A coaches.
There aren’t many instances where you’ll find a king-sized bed in a lightweight trailer, but that precisely is what they have done with the 2019 White Hawk 32KBS. Even with the 72″ x 80″ bed, they have effectively engineered an adequate storage room to make this a true couple’s travel coach.
Airstream is another company that has fully embraced today’s technological innovations into its models. Thanks to the new Airstream Care application, keeping your Airstream in peak shape has never been easier than it is now. It’s never been easier to find the answers you need to take care of your Airstream, thanks to the power of the internet and a passionate community of Airstream owners.
With the Airstream Care app, you can customize your service experience by entering your Airstream model, preferred checklists, service locations, and other information. Following your service schedule and usual usage, the app will automatically send you notifications on things you should regularly check to keep everything running smoothly and avoid Airstream issues.
Self-service products such as inspecting your battery, CO detector, or fire extinguisher no longer require the use of a manual checklist, as they do today. This adds a layer of efficiency to many Airstream models, which are already top-tier compared to the other brands on the RV market today.
Apart from that, Airstream is also well-known for creating a balance between its old-world charm and the technological innovations of today that make trips for their customers a walk in the park, most of the time.
Putting all these things together makes Winnebago a bit behind Jayco, at least because even though they have apps that serve as resources for maintenance and troubleshooting issues, Jayco has a Smart integration that makes its models Smart and, therefore, can be controlled in one app. This might not be a big deal to senior travelers since most are not adept with technology. Still, for younger campers and families, this can be very helpful since they can easily rely on the apps to do the simplest chores, such as turning the lights off.
I can safely say that both Airstream and Winnebago are equal. Still, they pale compared to Jayco with its innovative additions to its models across the brand. It is not really a big deal depending on people who use it, but it still makes a stark difference which may make or break the deal with them.
Customer Reviews: What People Are Saying About Them
Lastly, you can see the different points that people have experienced in using these RV brands. Customer reviews are very important as they have always helped undecided buyers buy a specific product because of their great reviews and other positive experiences. On the other hand, people depend on customer reviews for the negatives. It helps them choose the better brand available on the market.
For Winnebago, people have always loved how easy to drive their models are. Even though they have Class A motorhomes that might seem too hard to drive, most RV campers have found it easy to maneuver and drive on roads, thanks to its very straightforward design. Also, they have always loved the floor plans Winnebago models have provided to them over the years. These floor plans offer various options that can accommodate families of every size and lifestyle.
Some say that some of the appliances included in the models are of subpar quality, especially the television and the fridge. On the other hand, they are mostly put off with the factory warranty. Also, some have found it hard to communicate to their customer service, either providing them vague instructions or nothing. My point here is that you can always replace these appliances once they become broken, so it is not a big deal. However, I understand that not everyone is on the same financial page as me.
With Jayco, people love their floor plans because it is also versatile. It allows them to live comfortably inside their units as though they live at home. Also, with all the innovations they implemented across all of their models, including the Smart apps for their RVs, many people seem very much pleased with Jayco in that sense.
However, not everyone is sold on Jayco’s boat compared to Winnebago. Most people complain about the quality of the trailers in general, and even though the floor plans are solid, the appliances are not. The appliances are either of very low quality, or they stopped working suddenly.
The customer service is not great, either, with many people saying that they cannot avail of the warranties since the customer service keeps on giving excuses that only add to their frustration.
Finally, according to RV Insider, Airstream has the highest number of satisfied customers. Again, Airstream has been in the industry for the longest time and is one of the icons of RVs and recreational vehicles in general. Hence, the reputation that they have to keep is massive and for a good reason.
With the resurgence of vintage and analog aesthetics reaching the RV industry, Airstream will continue to charm people with its iconic shape and the nostalgia that they are carrying with them. The only problem that Airstream owners have with the company is the factory warranty, which is hard to avail, especially if you have owned the model for the longest time. Apart from that, people are still in love with Airstream.
For this last point of comparison, I can say that Airstream has the highest number of people ready to swear their allegiance behind the brand. Not only has Airstream proven its worth to people through the years, but it also did not solely rely on the brand.
They kept on improving and blending the old and new, striking a balance between the vintage makeup that made people fall in love with them in the first place and the modern amenities that people need to live their lives in their Airstreams as comfortably as possible. After all, Airstream is still the icon.
Winnebago sits right in the middle, with Jayco occupying the last spot between the three. Thus, it means that Winnebagos will never make you feel cheap even though they sell much more affordable models than other brands. They always pride themselves on pioneering convenience and prioritizing accommodation and comfort rather than having flashy features such as upholstery and other superficial things.
Final Verdict: Owning a Winnebago is Worth It
Owning a Winnebago is worth it. While I agree that you can get better RVs than a Winnebago, I can confidently say that Winnebago knows that convenience is much more important than having the best television or two-door fridges in your RV. They prioritize more on the overall comfort of the family owning the units, and this is a great way to start your RV journey with a decent-looking Winnebago before you can jump ahead into upgrading your RV to a larger, more sophisticated one. You can never go wrong with the classics, they say.