Cortes Campers Is Conquering the RV Market

Cortes Campers uses molded fiberglass to create lightweight, durable travel trailers that are energy-efficient.

Cortes Campers emerged out of the 2020 COVID-19 crisis and subsequent demand for a safe and fun way to continue taking vacations. CEO Anthony Corpora says the whole goal in starting Cortes Campers was to create the ultimate RV.

The company is named after Hernán Cortés, who Corpora says was very innovative in the conquest of the Aztecs.

“We want to bring innovation to the industry. We wanted to bring people something indestructible made of ultralight-weight and strong materials,” Corpora says.

“The RV industry is a multibillion-dollar market and it’s built on high-volume and low quality. You see ‘beware’ videos all over YouTube. Not all RVs are created equal. Not to bum rap our competitors, but it fueled us to put together the ultimate camper,” Corpora says.

Although a new company, Cortes Campers has a solid background in working with molded fiberglass and other innovative composites. Cortes Campers is a subsidiary of US Lighting Group (USLG), which is headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. Cortes Campers operates out of Euclid, Ohio. USLG “integrates intelligent design with advanced technology to create game-changing products.”

The subsidiaries of USLG include Futuro Houses, Cortes Campers, MIG Marine Corporation, Fusion X Marine and RVTronix. RVTronix designs appliances and accessories for RVs. “These devices will be multifunctional in nature and conserve energy,” Corpora says.

“Our engineers have experience building boats out of the same material. It’s the same takeaway as what Airstream did 100 years ago,” he says.

Cortes interior

A Unique Offering

What’s unique about Cortes Campers is that the units are
made of 100% fiberglass – they are lightweight, hypoallergenic and contain zero wood. “Except for the cutting board,” Corpora jokes. There are currently two offerings from Cortes Campers – the Cortes 16 and Cortes 17. The Cortes 16 travel trailer is a 17-foot, single-axle unit that sleeps two to three people. It features a king bed, bath with shower, two-burner cooktop, microwave and 2-cubic-foot refrigerator and freezer. Its total length is 18 feet, 2 inches and dry weight is 2,220 pounds (starting weight before options).

The Cortes 17 travel trailer is also a 17-foot, single-axle unit that sleeps two. It features a double bed, bath with shower, three-burner cooktop/oven, microwave and 8-cubic-foot refrigerator/freezer. Its total length is 18 feet, 2 inches and has a dry weight of 2,680 pounds. Color options include two-tone, solid color and metallic flake.

“Anything you build out of super fiberglass is going to be super rigid and light. When you know this type of manufacturing, you can build very efficiently,” Corpora says. “We came out with the 16; we changed the floorplan to have a full king-size bed in it, which made a little smaller kitchen. The bathroom is well designed and spacious. The 17 has a double-bed, which is what you typically see, but it has a bigger gourmet kitchen and a pretty big bathroom. You can prioritize sleeping or having a gourmet kitchen.”

Corpora says that the Cortes 16 and 17 should both be able to be towed by any vehicle with towing capabilities. He also says they are constructed with an outer and inner shell with air in between.

“Fiberglass is very energy efficient. It cools off quickly and heats up quickly. In the summertime, you run the A/C and it gets cold really fast. In the winter, you turn the furnace on, and it heats up really fast. Double-pane acrylic windows come standard. It’s a very capable four-season camper,” Corpora says. “There’s zero wood in our product except for the cutting board in the kitchen. We use a durable, marine-grade gelcoat with UV inhibitors and a polypropylene core.”

Cortes Campers have a wiring harness that is plug and play. Even the fasteners are stainless steel, so there’s nothing that will corrode, rot, mold, smell or deteriorate, the company says. Cortes Campers has an optional axle-less independent suspension from Timbren Axle, which provides smoother rides, off-road capability and easy maintenance.

Other options include built-in Furrion appliances, including a three-burner range with oven and hood vent, 8-cubic-foot refrigerator/freezer, built-in microwave and Ruvati stainless workstation and sink. There is an optional entertainment center with a 19-inch smart TV and/or marine-grade audio system.

“We use anti-skid flooring, like the shower floor, throughout. We put a drain plug in our camper so you can literally mop it and drain the water out the drain plug,” Corpora says.

cortes campers interior

Looking Ahead

The latest offering in the Cortes Campers lineup is the 22, which Corpora says they have aggressively been working to complete.

“The 22 is going to have everything. It’s a monster. It’s the biggest fiberglass camper ever created. It’s 8 feet wide. It’s going to be fantastic,” he says.

The 22 travel trailer also has a 17-foot single axle, but sleeps up to four people. It features two single beds or a California king and one twin bed, a bath with shower, three burner cooktop/oven option, microwave option and 8-cubic-foot refrigerator/freezer. Its total length is 21 feet, 9 inches.

The next product Corpora says they plan to work on is the Cortes 27.

“It will be very advanced. We’re excited to be actually starting it in R&D. It’s going to be like a F-22 fighter jet. Very cool and very futuristic. Something the market’s never seen,” he says.

Corpora says they’re also working on a truck camper concept.

“Our dealers want them. Especially our Canadian dealers. We feel there’s enough demand for a camper designed for a half-ton truck. We’re confident they can sell enough for us to put it through R&D.”

Reception & Dealer Network

Corpora and his team recently took Cortes Campers to the Hershey RV Show where he says they received great feedback and heard a lot of, “Whoa! What is this?”

Being made completely out of fiberglass, Corpora says cost can be one of the drawbacks of this particular market. The Cortes 16 starting MSRP is in the $30,000 range, while the Cortes 17 MSRP is in the $40,000 range.

“I guess you could say the only drawback in this market is the higher cost. But it also has a higher resale value. You get what you pay for,” Corpora says. “We may not be your first camper, but we might be your second or third…It’s the next level camper when you don’t want to continue to fix rotted parts.”

red Cortes Campers

Corpora says the next step in growing Cortes Campers is building a robust dealer network, which they are well on their way to doing.

“We’re about halfway there. We’re looking to have 80 to 100 dealers in Canada and the U.S. Our manufacturing is very methodical. We want to meet the demand of our dealers, so the goal is to get 250 units out until we can grow and expand. The goal is also to make bigger units, like a 32 and 37. It just depends on demand and feedback,” Corpora says.

Cortes Campers works intimately with their dealers. The sales team works with dealers to help drive retail, assist at shows when necessary and give factory tours.

“We’re more than willing to help educate people about what Cortes is. We take our customer’s happiness very seriously,” he says. “We’re not going to be the biggest, but we want to be the best quality. We may never be a THOR or Airstream, but we build a really good camper that people want.”

For more information about Cortes Campers, visit cortescampers.com.

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