Celebrating the start of camping season, many in the RV industry showed off new technology and features. One thing was evident: smart technology is revolutionizing both RV design and the way we RV. This is a trend seen in other industries, but it’s really cool to see it moving into the RV industry.
RVing Just Got Easier
Fortunately, what this means for us is that RVing is quickly becoming easier than ever! Price point and near-endless variety in size and floor plans make towables (both new travel trailers and used) a great option for first-time RV owners. Still, if you’re not used to towing, pulling a travel trailer or fifth-wheel down the road might take some getting used to. Not to worry, technology is making it easier for you.
Home life is rapidly becoming seamless as smart technology integrates our devices and homes. We can control lights, security, and entertainment from our phones and cars. Everything is at the touch of a button or accessible through voice commands.
RV tech is catching up with many RV manufacturers installing different smart systems to make managing your RV’s systems easy.
We’re used to having information at our fingertips. If you’re a new RVer, information technology can help remove some stressors and unknowns as you learn. How would you like helpful checklists in an app at your fingertips as you learn the RV ropes? It’s an idea that sounds good to many new RVers.
RV Tech That Helps You Maneuver
Driving and maneuvering an RV or motorhome might feel a little unfamiliar at first. This is certainly the case with larger Class As, towables, and fifth wheels. Given that everyone interested in buying an RV has probably driven, but not towed, towable RVs will arguably feel most unfamiliar.
With so much to love about the spacious and varied floorplans of towables, they’ve become a popular choice for family camping, fishing, hunting, and tailgating. In order to make it easy to get used to pulling a new towable, RV manufacturers are using technology to help the driver with maneuvering and setting up camp.
Keystone RV had some of the most exciting technology on display. A prototype of their LoadSafe onboard weighing system was showcased on their Fuzion 427 toy hauler. LoadSafe is an onboard weighing system specifically designed to give an RV owner a more convenient, more accurate, safer way to tow their loaded RV.
Inspired by technology in the trucking industry, it dynamically measures the loaded weight at each axle and at the hitch pin.
Keystone says some customers are nervous about towing heavy trailers, and it can be difficult to weigh your rig each and every time you go out. This technology makes it much easier to keep track of your RV’s weight so you feel more comfortable towing.
This is also good news if you want to take your dirt bike, ATV, or golf cart on the road with you. Keystone’s Raptor 351 toy hauler was outfitted with another prototype, the iFlex SMARTrydeadvanced air suspension system. Drawing from the automotive industry, the iFlex SMARTryde system provides a smoother ride, while also giving you control of your suspension and leveling RV functions on your smartphone or onboard touchpad.
The system makes it easier than ever to raise or lower vehicle ride height to correctly mate to the truck bed rail height, lower the angle of the ramp door, and even raise just one side to help you empty your tanks.
RV Tech to Easily Manage Your RV’s Systems
RVs are getting smarter! Home and automotive tech are permeating the RV industry bringing control of your RV’s systems to your fingertips.
The LoadSafesystem above, for example, provides instant feedback through GMC’s iN-Command control system. The iN-Command control system, coming to GMC and Chevy trucks like the 2020 GMC Sierra HD and 2020 Chevy Silverado HD (on sale late summer) will allow RV owners to monitor tank levels, control HVAC systems, and slide-outs.
Imagine turning on your RV’s AC while you’re still on your way back from the lake from your truck’s dash screen!
Airstream, often at the forefront of the RV industry, already debuted their Smart Control Technology in their Airstream Classic travel trailers.
Through their SmartControl app and an AT&T partnership, RV owners can remotely monitor and control indoor temperature, propane tanks, battery power, water levels, lighting, awnings, ventilation, and more. Up to 10 devices from smartphones to smart TVs can be connected, and a GPS locator can guide you right back to your airstream.
Girard, whose water heaters and awnings you might be familiar with, is also working on bringing Smart Technology to motorhomes. Their Girard Guard will now offer a voice activation system to make your RV “Alexa enabled.” Control your lights, awnings, and entertainment by voice. Alexa may be able to tell you the current wind speed and suggest you bring your awning in.
You can save several scenes to quickly perform multiple functions. The phrase, “Alexa, security mode” could turn all your lights and security cameras on while “Alexa, we’ve arrived” could result in all of your slides being pushed out.
Similarly, Dometic, unveiled their Dometic IoT solution, partnering with Leisure Travel Vans to bring smart technology to RVers. The multiplex system allows RVers to control lights, monitor tanks, RV temperature, and more through their smartphone or innovative touchpads onboard the RV.
It’s an exciting time in the RV industry. The introduction of advanced automotive technology and smart technology in RVs is great news for beginner RVers. Controls and monitoring will be easier and more intuitive than ever. Even better, the technology can now assist you as you’re learning. RVers can hit the road with better tools and more confidence than ever before.
What smart technology would you like to see in your RV? Leave a comment below!