For families fond of adventure, travel trailers are an investment worth making. They provide comfort and protection which tents can’t provide and help save the cost of booking hotels while on the move. Both Avion vs Airstream are designed to provide spacious and luxury living while on the road.
A travel trailer will generally tow on to the back of a truck and can be unlatched to your desired campsite making it easier for you to explore and enjoy the outdoors. It’s generally less expensive if you happen to travel a great deal and is more spacious being a whole home-compartment on its own.
That said, these towable RVs range from a simple tent on wheels to luxury homes fitting with all the furniture and equipment you’d need. With all the sizes, features and builds available on the market, making the right decision can be a little daunting.
For example, retro-style teardrop trailers may be fanciful to look at, but due to their usual small size, it might not be a suitable choice for families or groups. Given the price tag associated with each, it’s important to make sure the trailer you opt for is made for your specific use.
Airstream is one of the most popular lines of travel trailers. However, you might have noticed Avion RVs often mentioned along-side. The deeper you dive, the more confusing it can get. Therefore, let’s simplify things for you and figure out which style would suit you best.
Avion vs Airstream: What’s the Difference?
Avion is actually a defunct line of trailers by Fleetwood, whereas the Airstream is a more modern rendition. They have many similarities so much so the Avion is referred to as the Airstream’s second cousin. There are some significant differences between them, which are as follows:
- The Airstream has more modern fitting – Given Avion is no longer in production, its counterpart is basically fitted with more modern, smart controls.
- Avion has a better build quality – While not profound, Airstream’s aluminum exterior is lighter and slightly less durable than Avion.
- Airstream has less storage space – Cubby Holes and overhead bins found within the Avion line is significantly more spacious and offers a larger open outlet.
- Avion is less comparatively less expensive – Airstreams will be generally more expensive but has the virtue of being new. Avion models are usually revamped by sellers but will have a few years on them.
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Their differences offer insight but in order to understand how either can enrich your life, you need to fully understand what each trailer offers. So, dive right in the details.
Avion Travel Trailers
Avion Trailers were first manufactured in 1956 by the now-defunct Fleetwood company. When searching for trailers, you’d like to look at the model with the seller’s information in order to know the exact features. Models of Avion Travel Trailers by its manufacture year include:
- The 50’s: 26′ Regal, 23′ Rover, and 20′ Rambler
- The 60’s: 30′ Imperial, 24′ Holiday and 21′ Tourist
- The 70’s: 31′ LaGrande, 31′ Imperial, 28′ Travelcader and 25′ Voyageur
- The 80’s: V-model, W-model, 28A-model, 30P-model, 34X-model, 32S-model, 35X-model, and Silver Anniversary Model
- 1989: Dura-Brite aluminum painted models
- The 90s: 5th Wheel trailers
One of the prime reasons Avion holds a special space in the hearts of trailer enthusiasts is its aluminum build and its unique features.
The aluminum skin gave the trailer a modern-looking mirror finish while amping up its resistance factor. The units are generally satin-finished Anodized Aluminium which prevents dents and scraps as well as reduces the appearance of scratches.
It also utilized heavy-duty steel to construct triple beams for added support. Avions generally lie in between the 20’ range but 31 ½’ trailers.
For a premium towing experience, the revolutionary MOR/Ryde suspension system was included and became standard equipment for travel trailers. It’s frame members are 6 inches deep and are constructed from Urethane foam called Thermo-X by the company for added insulation and rigidity. Plexiglas acrylic windows were used by the company up until 1972 as well.
Its interior furnishings were made from hardwood and were built to last. Overall, Avion Travel Trailers were made from some of the best materials and provided a home-like feel to its users.
Avion Trailer Specifications
- Anodized Aluminium Finish
- Hardwood Furnishing
- 6” deep Thermo-X frame
- Dual Furnace for Controlled Heating
- Triple Entry Steps
- Exterior Storage Compartments with Overhead options available
- MOR/Ryde Suspension System or Adjust-a-Ryde suspension variations
- Heavy-duty Build Quality – Given their present popularity, it should be no surprise that Avion trailers are built to last.
- Hardwood Furnishing – When it comes to comfort, the hardwood furnishing would keep you at ease of use. The bathrooms are also usually fitting with porcelain materials thereby adding to their longevity and comfort factors.
- Excellent Suspension Options – Avions generally either use a MOR-Ryde suspension system or the Adjust-a-Ryde system; both of which are excellent and should be fairly easy to use.
- Superior Spacing for Storage – Despite resembling similar to an Airstream in its construction, the Avion uses its spacing well to provide a full layout with better storage facility.
- Not Easily Available– Unlike more modern options, Avions are sold by resellers and are not so readily available for purchase.
- May Require Renovations – Due to its age, your particular unit may require renovations which could bring up the costs significantly.
- Heavier Compared to Newer Models – Although it is considered to be much sturdier, it is heavier than your standard trailers which should be taken into account along-with your towing vehicles’ capacity.
Frequently Asked Questions About Avion
Can you polish an Avion Trailer?
Yes, you should be able to polish your trailer using appropriate materials for the type of aluminum used within your unit. Remember to always start by clearing the surface and drying it off in order to remove any dust or dirt.
Where to find Avion Trailers?
In order to purchase Avion trailers, contact your local retailer or visit forums with trailer listings. It might take a little time for a trailer to become available; that said, run necessary inspections in order to ensure the unit is able to function according to your need.
What sizes of Trailers are available?
Avion trailers are available in various sizes ranging from 20’ to 31 ½’ depending on the year, make and model. Each will have its own features so be sure to research before making any purchases.
How to clean Anodized Aluminium?
Avoid the use of any harsh chemicals and use any solvents with care. In order to protect the layering, do not clean in direct sunlight and rinse quickly. You may want to conduct a test on a smaller area before opting to clean your entire trailer.
Airstream Travel Trailer Models Compared
Airstream Trailers are similar to Avion in build, design, and functionality; however, they are considerably lighter and more modern. They are constructed using durable aluminum panels and made from a sturdy steel frame. It comes in 8 different variations:
- Classic: 30’ to 33’
- Globetrotter: 23’ to 27’
- International Serenity: 23’ to 30’
- Flying Cloud: 23’ to 30’
- Caravel: 16’ to 22’
- Bambi: 16’ to 22’
- Nest: 16’
- Basecamp: 16’
When it comes to customizations, Airstream comes in a range of sizes from 16’ to 33’. It lets you choose the space you need for your ideal motorhome.
The trailers also utilize Torsion Axle Suspension which tends to be quieter and more responsive to bumps while dampening vibrations. Mounting is also simplified therefore making usage simpler and easier for beginners and advanced travelers alike.
Although the Airstream does not use hardwood furnishing, it stands out through its modern design and layout. The trailer mixes wood finishes and gives it a futuristic feel to its coaches.
Features of Airstream
- Aluminum Finish
- 4-5” deep frame
- Hydronic Heating
- Aluminum Entry Steps
- Overhead, Exterior and/or Under the Bed Storage Compartments
- Torsion Axle Suspension
- Aluminium Exterior Built to Last – Being a presently manufactured line of trailers, Airstream uses the latest innovations and materials to build a durable set-up for travelers in the present time. In case there are any breakdowns, parts, and materials are easily available as well.
- Futuristic Interiors – The layout, design, and materials used for making each model keep comfort, form, and function at its forefront. It utilizes its spacing options well and creatively providing for a contemporary design internally.
- They’re cost-efficient – Given their light-weight and aerodynamic build, Airstreams provide better mileage during your travels and thus, save you money overall.
- Utilizes Independent Torsion Axle Suspension – This helps to absorb shock while making towing easier for long journeys.
- Smart Features Available In Newer Models – Newer Airstream models have added smartphone features to control lights and other operations while towing or as needed.
- Expensive – Airstreams can be more expensive to purchase as compared to other travel coaches. You’re getting value for that money but the initial down payment and maintenance costs should be taken into consideration.
- Not as weatherproof – Due to the materials used, you may experience slight issues with insulation.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Airstream
Do Airstreams have slide-outs?
Generally, airstreams do not have slide outs, but you can add them in by separately purchasing and installing them.
How much sleep capacity do trailers have?
Their trailers with the standard fittings are able to accommodate up to 2 to 5 people.
What makes Airstream different from Fifth Wheels?
The airstream latches onto the bumper of the car as opposed to the truck bed and has a simpler design with lesser weight, which makes it different from 5th Wheel RVs.
Do the trailers have a warranty?
If purchased from an authorized seller, you will have a 24-month warranty for your camper.
Avion vs Airstream: What to Look Out For
When buying a travel trailer, there are a few decision swaying questions you want to have mentally answered. It gives you a layout for the type, model and features you need in your coach for comfortable living. Here are a few things you should consider:
How you intend to use your trailer is a fundamental question to answer. It relates to the type of traveling you intend to do, for what duration and in what climate. For example, the more vintage RVs may not have the insulation required for comfortable living in colder environments. It might be wise to opt for newer models which have been geared and tested in different weathers.
Regardless of the type of RV you choose, it’s going to cost you a pretty penny. These towable homes are built to last and therefore, are a worthwhile investment if you play your cards right. Take a moment to think a few years ahead.
To the requirements you have or the trips, you plan on taking. Would they be possible on the choice you make? Or, will you need to upgrade? This will help set up your budget while narrowing down a trailer which can feel like home.
From the kitchen to your bathroom, take a good look at the space you have available. Aside from your storage, your lounging and the relaxing area should be able to accommodate your living.
Kitchens, for example, are often overlooked and can be the reason for individuals wanting to change their trailer. Don’t try to fit within the trailer, instead opt for one which allows you to conduct yourself comfortably without making you compromise.
Used or New?
In the case of vintage trailers, used is most-like the only option, but you can buy used/renovated models of newer RVs as well. Take a look around or keep in touch with your local seller to know what types of listing they have around before making the choice for yourself.
If you do end up going the used route, it would be worthwhile to conduct a third-party inspection to ensure you’re getting value for your investment.
Most RV owners end up changing their main trailer from time to time or they may buy one for a few years only; that’s when resale value comes in handy. While you won’t recover the full amount, the ideal coach would allow you to recover some of your investment through sale, if desired. For example, the Airstream would have a better resale than an Avion and for some, it would make the latter a less lucrative investment.
Renovations and Maintenance costs
Whether you buy new or used, you may wish to upgrade or change-up a few things within your trailer. Those costs should be taken into account, as well as any additional maintenance costs associated with either option.
To know about overtime costs, gauge the insulation, heating/cooling systems and any gas/electrical outputs you need to continually run your machine. You should also count in your own handyman skills to take care of any issues which may add in costs if repairs are to be made.
Always consider the warranty you’re receiving from your sellers. Most vintage trailers will not have any warranty but newer ones generally come with a 24-month warranty which help guard against issues which may occur.
Once you’ve selected the type of towable home you need, take a look at the models available for sizes and features unique to them. It will help you hone in on the exact trailer you need.
Always take your own budget into account when making a purchase. Trailers are an investment and should be made wisely. You can always upgrade once you do have the means to do so. Therefore, always make the most economical decision according to the aforementioned factors.
Lastly, don’t discount your own personal preference. The hype regarding products comes and goes, but you should be comfortable during your journey in a home which is a utility to you. Take some time to clear your mind and make a choice according to what you think is best.
Avion vs Airstream: Which One Should You Get?
Once you have your trailer specifications figured out, you’ll have a much better idea of which model and brand you should go for. Our personal recommendation leans towards the Airstream.
While the Avion has a better build quality in its preserved state and is less expensive, its maintenance and repairs can pose challenges for beginners or casual RV users. The trailers in circulation are not currently manufactured and their parts are not readily available.
Many Avion owners have to conduct significant inspections and renovations which raises its overall price significantly. Those who have owned RVs and are capable of its upkeep will find the Avion to be a traveling home that lasts and feels traditionally luxurious.
Airstream would be a preference by the virtue of its maintenance and customer service. You’re covered under a warranty and will be able to buy parts and replacements, if necessary.
The trade-off between build quality is only comparative and the RV itself has earned its reputation has a great option as a towable home for a reason. You can customize the vehicle according to your need, preference, and style.
In order to make the right decision, you should always inspect each RV or use a third-party service. Get all the information you can beforehand so your ultimate decision is right for you and your journeys.
Travel Trailer Safety Tips
Owing a towable home requires some precautions to be taken while you’re out on the road. These include:
- You Need to Know How to Drive with Your RV – It might seem simple enough to drive with an attachment to your truck, but you should always practice beforehand and familiarize yourself with the feel of driving your new trailer. Likewise, take a moment to look into the laws and recommended driving precautions of driving RVs before embarking on your journey.
- Get Insured – Accidents can happen any time and with the best of measures; therefore, to keep yourself secured look into getting insurance which specifically covers RVs.
- Confirm Your Campground Space – In order to not get stranded out of your campground and having to find another spot, which may or may not is safe, confirm your booking before arriving at the location.
- Prepare for the External Factors – Road conditions, constructions or weather changes should all be taken into account and you should be prepared to tackle the challenges to avoid any issues.
- Inspect Your Truck and Trailer Beforehand – Dedicate some time to rundown all the necessary inspections required to ensure your vehicle and trailer are fit to conduct your trip to and from your location.
- Be Wary of Your Electrical Output – On the road, keep yourself aware of the electrical power you have and all the outlets which are using it. You wouldn’t want to overload the output and have a calculated understanding of the power you’re using on a day-to-day basis.
- Take Weight into Account – Your tow truck should be able to accommodate for the weight of your trailer and the additional baggage add-in. Given it affects your ability to drive and navigate, you should ensure the weight is distributed evenly.
- Keep Yourself Accessible – In order to keep yourself open to help, keep in touch with people. Investing in WIFI or 4G plans can help ensure you’re accessible throughout your journey.
Good Sam is like the AAA, but specifically for RVs. We don't travel without it. Rest easy knowing that the unexpected breakdowns don't have to ruin your trip!