Smaller than an iconic “silver bullet” Airstream trailer but cuter than the brand’s compact lightweight Nest model, the new Airstream Basecamp X is designed to go farther than ever. An upgrade to the standard Basecamp model released in 2016, the X adds three inches of extra ground clearance, Goodyear all-terrain tires, increased departure angles and a steel front stone guard to stand up to road conditions far off the beaten path – but it retains a sense of Airstream charm.
Rugged off-road trailers are big business, and there are certainly plenty of them to choose from, whether you’re a hardcore survivalist looking for a bug-out vehicle or just like a little more comfort than tent camping can offer when you’re in the wilderness. Some simply contain the basics and pack down to highly streamlined proportions, and some include everything you can imagine needing, including the kitchen sink. But if you’re an Airstream enthusiast stuck on a classic look, the Basecamp X may be a nice compromise, and at $39,600, it comes a lot cheaper than the full-length version, which can run upwards of $100K.
The Basecamp X weighs in at 2,635 pounds with a gross weight rating of 3,500 pounds, falling into the towing capacity range of many small and midsize SUVs. Inside, it’s got a convertible sofa bed offering accommodations for two travelers, a small kitchenette and bathroom and a large back door for loading kayaks and other gear. It’s pre-wired for solar panels, too. It may not be quite rugged enough to manage the rockiest of roads, but it’s capable of handling the needs of most outdoor enthusiasts.
The Nest, which debuted last year, is more of a departure from Airstream’s general aesthetic with its molded fiberglass body, but it’s also super lightweight and more comfortable and spacious inside than the Basecamp, for those who prefer a slightly less adventurous approach to trailer camping.