New Airstream Studio F.A. Porsche Concept Travel Trailer Ditches Rivets
Before you get all upset that Airstream has abandoned its iconic riveted aluminum travel trailers, or, conversely, overly excited that Airstream is continuing to expanded beyond its aforementioned traditional riveted aluminum travel trailers, keep in mind the Airstream presented to you now is just a concept. It’s just a “what if” type of thing: What if two brands put their proverbial heads together to design a next-generation travel trailer for, well, the next generation? Sure, most design elements won’t get incorporated into production someday, but a few just might have a chance.
It’s called the Airstream Studio F.A. Porsche Concept travel trailer, and it’s a collaboration between Airstream and Studio F.A. Porsche. The project, presented as a 1/3-scale model hitched to a Porsche Macan, debuted at Porsche’s “Porsche X” SXSW (South by Southwest) exhibit in Austin, Texas. The “X” emphasizes collaboration, and as you can see, it’s all about merging pure Airstream DNA with innovative design elements from Studio F.A. Porsche, the studio whose primary focus is its own brand, Porsche Design. Studio F.A. Porsche—the F.A. standing for Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, its founder in 1972—is headquartered in Zell am See, Austria, and is a subsidiary of the Porsche Lifestyle Group—related to but not exactly the automaker side of things.
Thanks to a pop-up roof and adjustable air-ride suspension (both firsts for Airstream), the Airstream Studio F.A. Porsche Concept travel trailer could theoretically be stored in a garage. That’s a big deal, considering the cost and hassle of off-site storage. Pop-ups are currently super popular, for good reasons. They “grow” to provide a less claustrophobic, roomier interior while parked, and “shrink” to create an aerodynamic, slim profile while traveling. Likewise, air-ride suspension can be raised for more clearance (think un-paved dirt roads) and lowered for easier entry and storage.
The exterior (including its belly) is smoother than a blubbery seal. Whereas many travel trailers have things protruding from nearly every panel—air conditioning units, fan vents, hook-up ports, racks, awnings, spare tires, propane bottles, latches, knobs ‘n gizmos ‘n nozzles—the surface of the Airstream Studio F.A. Porsche Concept is clean and slick, minus some integrated rooftop solar panels. Those in the custom vehicle world would call it “shaved.”
It looks cool, but it’s also aerodynamic this way. So where is everything? Tucked inside and underneath, apparently. For example, the ducted air conditioning “is located above the concept’s floor.” There’s a 10-inch space below the floor that hides the hot water/heating products, spare wheel, holding tanks, and a lithium battery.
This Airstream concept has a side door and rear access—although it’s not a traditional toy hauler. A hinge-up hatch and a drop-down tailgate (think SUV) combine to completely open the back of the travel trailer, allowing for easy gear loading and more fresh air. The tailgate area extends the interior’s living space, and Airstream says it’s possible to attach awnings to the hatch for some extra shade.
Interior floor plan renderings make it look spacious, efficient, and comfortable. As seen in camper van builds and other travel trailers, there’s a rear 82-inch by 61-inch sleeping area that doubles as a dinette/work station. The sink is located against the front wall, with what appears to be an induction cooktop next to it. A hinged countertop expands in front of the side entry door to create more coveted countertop. We’re intrigued by what appears to be an uninterrupted netted overhead storage shelf around the whole upper perimeter. If this were a restaurant and not a concept trailer, we’d run a decorative vintage fabric train around it.
There’s a wet bath in the front corner opposite the side entry door. The wet bath’s door is rather clever in that while the bath/toilet are not in use, it hugs the toilet tightly, creating more open interior room by exposing the bath area. When the bath/toilet are in use, the door swings “shut” outward from the toilet, sealing off the whole area for maximum privacy.
Do you dig this Airstream collab with Studio F.A. Porsche? Not that it really matters. Even with a Bowlus-sized pocketbook, you can’t tuck one in your garage—yet. Maybe someday, if enough people try to buy one.
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