Winnebago Industries reveals first all-electric motorhome concept

RV giant Winnebago Industries has revealed its first all-electric zero emission motorhome concept, the e-RV. The vehicle, which was showcased at the recent Florida RV Super Show, has been in development for two years and features an advanced drive train and battery package that also powers all the living area systems in the RV.

“This is an exciting time for Winnebago Industries and the outdoor lifestyle industry as a whole. We are proud to continue our innovation legacy with the reveal of the e-RV concept vehicle,” said Michael Happe, Winnebago Industries president and chief executive officer.

Meanwhile, Winnebago Industries senior vice president, business development, advanced technology and enterprise marketing, Ashis Bhattacharya, added: “Consumer demand is driving electric power applications across many fronts, and we believe RV consumers are poised to benefit from the enhanced features and usability that electrified and connected RV products will provide.

“Winnebago Industries has an ongoing mission to listen to and learn from our customers as we continue refining, exploring, and innovating, and the e-RV concept vehicle is a perfect example of this.”

What are the key features of the e-RV?

  • The e-RV is packed with appliance designed to optimise energy usage and battery performance. Examples include the 350-volt DC power for the water heater and roof mounted air conditioner, 110-volt AC for the induction cooktop and the refrigerator, which can also operate on 12-volt DC power for enhanced flexibility and convenience.
  • The battery is flexible in terms of its charging source, meaning users can charge it at home, on the campground or at a dedicated charging station. In a high-current charging situation, charging time is about 45 minutes.
  • Battery technology is anticipated to continue to evolve as this concept vehicle develops but the current industry standard of an 86kWh battery configuration provides a range of 125 miles while powering on-board systems. This is sufficient for 54 per cent of new RV buyers who prefer to make trips under 200 miles according to data from the RV Industry Association.
  • An integrated control system that enables operation of subsystems, optimises load and efficiency, and displays system information and controls on a digital display. The control systems can be monitored through a tablet or smartphone app.
  • High performance wireless connectivity through a residential grade wi-fi network via dual-modem router that enables high data streaming levels.
  • Premium galley amenities including a modern, marine-grade refrigerator, slide out induction cooktop, and matte black sink fixtures. The bathroom includes a toilet and contemporary fixtures including a detachable, handheld shower head.
  • Materials throughout the e-RV concept vehicle are selected with a preference for eco-friendly and sustainable options. This includes sustainable, recycled cork-rubber flooring and woollen wall appliques to enhance thermal and wall insulation.
  • A chassis based on a readily available Ford Transit platform that has been modified with an advanced electrical power system from Lightning e Motors that powers the drivetrain, vehicle controls and living quarters.

The e-RV was developed by Winnebago Industries Advanced Technology Group (ATG), which was established in 2019 to help identify and develop emerging technologies for application within future products. This is the first public facing example of ATG’s work and Winnebago Industries believes it highlights its commitment to innovation and sustainability.