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Airstream Eliminates Gas and Loads Lithium into Mercedes Sprinter RVs


Technology-focused website New Atlas takes a look at the next steps Airstream is taking in moving away from fossil fuels to power its units.

As it prepares to more fully electrify its RV fleet with some exciting innovations, Airstream is stepping closer by beefing up the available power on its Mercedes-Benz Sprinter camper vans and small motorhomes. The new E1 package eliminates the need for a propane tank or gas generator, adding a higher capacity lithium-battery-based electrical system and diesel heat/hot water system that runs off the Sprinter’s fuel tank. E1-equipped Airstreams will better support modern travelers, from digital nomads to family vacationers.

Airstream’s lineup of Mercedes-Benz motorhomes is heavy on camper vans but also includes the Atlas Class C motorhome. The E1 package is available across the entire range and multiplies available battery capacity by up to 10 times with a 12.1-kilowatt Volta Power Systems lithium battery bank. To go along with the powerful battery, Airstream has added a 3,200-Watt pure sine inverter, two 30-A converters, a secondary 51-V alternator and extra solar hookups.

Airstream has stopped short of the type of pure-electric camper equipment setup we recently saw from ModVans, but it’s streamlined heating by adding a diesel Timberline 2.0 hydronic heat and hot water unit. This addition, along with an induction cooktop, eliminates the need for an LPG tank, fueling directly from the Sprinter’s diesel tank.

“The E1 package is a major innovation for our motorized products, with a simplified experience that delivers more power than ever before,” Airstream president and CEO Bob Wheeler said in an announcement. “Whether you’re working from the road, heading south for the winter, or looking to spend more time off-grid, the E1 package’s powerful battery and single-fuel-source comfort system makes it easier than ever to get the most out of your touring coach.”

Click here to read the full report from C.C. Weiss.

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