American startup Lightship RV took camping enthusiasts by surprise when it announced its first product, the L1, back in March. With an integrated 80-kilowatt-hour battery pack, the trailer can propel itself to maintain the range of the towing vehicle, so “a 300-mile range electric vehicle (EV) used to tow it remains a 300-mile range EV, and a 25-mpg gas truck remains a 25-mpg gas truck,” according to the company.
Now, automotive engineer and teardown expert Sandy Munro went to see the Lightship L1 RV trailer and get the full tour from Ben Parker, co-founder of Lightship. The video of the hands-on presentation is embedded at the top of this page, where Munro expresses his admiration for the startup’s first product, saying that it’s “the latest and greatest in the world of RVs.”
The L1 is 27 feet long and weighs around 7,500 pounds fully loaded, which means that it can be towed by any half-ton full-size pickup, including the electric Ford F-150 Lightning and Rivian R1T. But besides the main attraction which is the electric powertrain, Lightship’s RV has another party trick as it can lower its roof to make it more aerodynamic while traveling and raise it when camping.
Lightship says the trailer is 6 feet, 9 inches tall in Road mode and 10 feet tall in Camp Mode, which prompted Sandy Munro to say that “it’s fantastic,” referring to the aerodynamic properties of the camper when towed.
Moving inside, the L1 can accommodate 4-6 people in two extensible beds and there are lots of storage compartments for personal items. All of the appliances are electric and there are solar panels on the roof that can produce up to 3 kilowatts of energy that’s fed into the high-voltage batteries.
Lightship’s co-founder mentions at some point in the video that all the electric appliances get juice from the two 40 kWh packs mounted under the trailer via an inverter. There’s also no propane on board, for a truly emissions-free experience.
The company is taking $500 refundable pre-orders for the L1, with production scheduled to begin in late 2024 with an MSRP of $125,000.
As always, we’d like to know what you think about the video embedded above, so after watching it, head over to the comments section below to give us your thoughts.