A Breakdown of the Airstream Classic

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An Airstream Classic parked in the woods during a camping trip.

If you’ve seen a silver trailer that looks more like a spacecraft than an RV, it’s likely an Airstream. These trailers are some of the most recognizable vehicles in the RV industry.

They’re also the products of a company that has been making RVs for almost 100 years. This classic American icon was named one of the “99 Things That, Yes, Americans Make Best” by Money magazine in 1987.

So, let’s look closer at one of the travel trailer lines: the Airstream Classic. This line offers the largest, most expensive options and luxurious interior accommodations for travelers to enjoy the open road. Let’s dive in!

Who Is Airstream?

Airstream remains one of the RV industry’s most well-respected, trusted brands. Founded in 1931 by Wally Byam, Airstream was the only travel trailer company that survived post-WWI. By the 1950s, it had outgrown its facility in California and moved to its current location in Jackson Center, Ohio.

During the first 40+ years, Airstream produced only travel trailers. The company stuck to what it knew how to do well. Thus, the first makeover didn’t occur until 1969. It was then that they redesigned the Airstream travel trailers with rounder edges to look more like the “silver bullets” we see today.

1974 Airstream branched out in the motorhome market with the Argosy but discontinued the unit in 1979.

It wouldn’t be until the 2000s when Airstream would enter the motorized RV market again with its Touring Coaches built on Sprinter van chassis. Today, Airstream continues to produce both travel trailers and Class B vans, 

Is Airstream a Good Company?

If you want a top-quality RV, don’t look further than Airstream. In an industry where mass production, quick turn-around times, and labor shortages have resulted in poor quality, Airstream has risen above and remained committed to high standards.

Airstreams also retain their value much longer than traditional RVs. A 30-year-old Airstream has only lost a percentage of its value over the years, while a 30-year-old trailer of another brand may be worth barely anything.

In addition, you don’t see many 30-year-old trailers because the quality isn’t good enough for them to last that long. On the other hand, Airstreams are built to be passed down from generation to generation. You’ll pay more for them upfront, but you’ll get a travel trailer that will last for decades.

Close up of an Airstream classic.

What Types of RVs Does Airstream Make?

Currently, Airstream makes travel trailers and Class B vans. The trailer lines include the Airstream Classic, Globetrotter, International, Flying Cloud, Caravel, Bambi, and Basecamp. There are also two special edition lines with Pottery Barn and REI.

The Touring Coaches include the Airstream Atlas, Interstate 24X, Interstate 24GL, Interstate 24GT, and Interstate 19. All of these are built on a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis. The Rangeline is the only option built on a RAM ProMaster chassis.

The Airstream Classic Lineup

The Airstream Classic is designed for full-timers or travelers taking longer trips because this line provides everything you need for a comfortable living situation or a months-long road trip. The spacious interiors offer the most room to work, lounge, sleep, and entertain.

Currently, there are two floorplans: 30RB and 33FB. Both are double-axle models and sleep up to five people. Both also have a 10,000-pound GVWR and measure over 31 feet in length, which means they should probably be towed with a ¾ ton truck or larger.

Airstream Classic 30RB

Length: 31 feet 5 inches

GVWR: 10,000 pounds

Sleeping Capacity: Five

Features: The Airstream Classic 30RB has a rear bedroom and a full bathroom. Owners can choose to have a queen bed or two twin beds. The front of the unit features a large sofa surrounded by windows. The sofa has two powered reclining seats and serves as an extra sleeping space.

In the center of this RV, you’ll find the dining area and kitchen. The booth dinette has room for four people to eat comfortably, and if you need even more sleeping space, it easily converts to a bed with the tap of a button. The kitchen includes a stove, oven, convection microwave, stainless steel sink, and refrigerator/freezer.

Like all Airstreams, there are no slides, but the interior is thoughtfully designed with ample storage space throughout the unit.

MSRP: Starting at $191,500

Double beds inside an Airstream Classic.

Airstream Classic 33FB

Length: 33 feet 3 inches

GVWR: 10,000 pounds

Sleeping Capacity: Five

Features: The Airstream Classic 33FB moves the bedroom to the front of the unit, where the sofa sits in the previous model. Like the RV before, owners can choose a queen or two twin beds. The full bathroom sits on the other end of the trailer in the rear.

The 33FB bathroom is the most spacious option among all Airstreams, spanning the entire back of the trailer with a large vanity, medicine cabinet, heated towel bar, and a residential-style shower with a heated floor.

In the center of this model, the kitchen and dining area sit adjacent to the bedroom, and a reclining sofa lies farther toward the bathroom. A media cabinet sits opposite the sofa and houses the 60-inch projection TV screen that raises and lowers via remote control.

You also have a desk space. Like the previous model, this RV has additional sleeping space with the sofa or the converted booth dinette.

MSRP: Starting at $209,900

What’s the Difference Between the Airstream Classic and Other Airstream Travel Trailers?

The Airstream Classic is the largest line among the Airstream travel trailers. They all feature the iconic silver bullet design with no slides and aluminum construction. But the Classic is the top-of-the-line model.

From the spa bathroom to the projection TV to the ultra-leather fabrics to the Corian countertops, every detail in the Airstream Classic has been well thought out and designed for campers to enjoy luxury and comfort on the road.

Keep in Mind: Why Did Airstream Stop Making the Nest? Let’s find out!

Inside an Airstream Classic bathroom.

Who Is an Airstream Classic Good for?

Airstreams aren’t for everyone. Large families who need multiple slides to create larger interior spaces won’t find Airstreams to suit their needs.

Other people just don’t like the silver bullet look. Even though they’re aerodynamic and help with fuel efficiency, Airstreams have a unique shape and aluminum design that doesn’t appeal to some campers.

But for retired couples who are hitting the road long-term — whether as snowbirds for the season or for years to come — the Airstream Classic is an excellent option. Families may get tired of converting the dinette space every night, but a couple will have the layout they need for luxury living.

And since Airstreams cost more than most other travel trailer brands, fewer travelers can afford them. A single parent may love the layout of the twin bed configuration, but they might not be financially able to make the purchase.

What Customers Are Saying

One owner of an Airstream Classic 33FB wrote on RV Insider, “I grew up admiring Airstream’s timeless design and functionality. The large shower, residential toilet, large sinks in the bathroom and kitchen make it seem like home.

The large projection TV and computer workstation allow me to use my computer and enjoy a movie. Airstream customer service and dealers offer service way ahead of other RV dealerships and brands. Timeless classic, solid construction, and excellent customer service.”

Even the service at the Jackson Center facility is superb. One happy owner shared on Google, “A top notch customer experience from start to finish. The staff was incredible.

They listened carefully and sincerely cared about us as a customer. The repair work was performed efficiently and completely to our satisfaction. We will be back again for preventative maintenance.”

RVs aren’t perfect. The Airstream Classic will have problems, even with its high-quality construction. But when something happens, you have a company that will service your trailer with professionalism and care, giving you peace of mind on the journey.

Keep in Mind: Airstreams aren’t cheap! If you’re wanting to buy a used Airstream that’s not a scam, here’s how!

Is the Airstream Classic Worth It?

A new Airstream Classic will cost around $200,000. Is it worth the price tag? For many, it’s absolutely worth it because of its luxurious features and hand-crafted construction.

Airstream has been around for almost 100 years. They seem to have figured out a few things to make their trailers last for decades. So many travelers opt for an Airstream even with the high price tag.

If your budget doesn’t allow for an Airstream Classic, there are other models you might want to consider, like the Globetrotter, Intentional, or Flying Cloud. You can read about the Flying Cloud in our article “A Breakdown of the Airstream Flying Cloud.”

Or if you want something even less expensive but still made with higher quality than traditional RVs, check out our article “Airstream Too Expensive for You? Here Are Some Airstream Alternatives.”

You’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of owning an Airstream Classic. Is it worth it to you?

1 comment
  1. I would love to have a conversation with the peraon at the top if Air Stream. Our experience with our brand new airstream has been less than stellar. Purchased the last of February 2023, the RV has spent more time in repairs than it has on the road. The person assigned to us says every issue has been corrected. That is beside the point. You would not expect a 2023 vehicle to have to have so much repair. Currently the RV is sitting in Tanner AL awaiting the batteries which have burned up. Its been there four weeks and we have been told it will be another six before the batteries will be there. We feel the airstream is a great quality company but we definitely got the lemon last year. I do mot understand why they simply would not replace the ynit instead of allowing us to fester and feel very bitter.

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