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New, improved Shasta trailer from '50s back in production


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MIDDLEBURY, Ind. -- Coachmen RV Group has revived its Shasta brand with a new lightweight travel trailer. While the RV resembles the classic Shasta trailers of the late '50s and early '60s, it has successfully married modern technology with tradition.
 
Shasta is one of the oldest brands of RV, and there are still thousands of people who proudly own and use their Shasta trailers from the 1950s and '60s. There are also a variety of chat groups and clubs devoted to finding and restoring old Shasta trailers.
 
The exterior has the classic appeal of the old Shasta trailers, including the "Z" side graphic design available in four colors, and trademark silver "wings" that made a Shasta instantly recognizable. Standard baby moon hubcaps also provide a tribute to the past. Optional five-spoke aluminum rims are available to add a modern twist. With either wheel selection, the tires are filled with NitroFill nitrogen gas that runs cooler and can extend tire life up to 30 percent.
 
The new Shasta Airflyte is constructed with aluminum framed, vacuum-bond laminate sidewalls and a one-piece fiberglass roof. This makes for a very lightweight trailer that can be towed by both contemporary and classic vehicles. The trailer's base weight starts under 2,500 pounds. Coachmen designers consciously worked to keep the weight down so that they could accommodate Shasta aficionados who want to pair their classic car with their travel trailer.
 
While the outside of the trailer reminds people of a by-gone time, the spacious interior boasts a full 6-feet 5-inches of headroom and modern amenities. For instance, the galley has a portable electric cooktop and a 1.2-cubic-foot built-in microwave. The refrigerator is two-way (12v/110v) compressor driven for quick cooling results, and the stainless steel sink is a European design with glass cover and fold down faucet.
 
The Shastas of the '50s and '60s did not have televisions, but this Shasta does -- a 19-inch LCD (HD ready) TV with an easy-release bracket for inside or outside viewing. It also has a DVD player and optional stereo with CD player and iPod docking station. The U-dinette with its retro-style cushions provides ample seating for watching TV, playing games and enjoying a meal. Another clever touch: the pedestal dinette table slides from front to rear to give people easier access around the dinette. For a good night's sleep, the dinette easily converts to a 60-inch by 80-inch queen bed.
 
The bathroom is a generous wet bath with a power vent and 6-gallon electric hot water heater.
 
Shasta Airflyte offers three different interior decors: Classic Red, Tangerine Dream and Ocean Spray. Cabinetry is gracefully curved to give the interior more eye appeal. The designers also made effective work of the lighting. For instance, the kitchen cabinet toe kick is lighted, and the overhead cabinets and ceiling feature flush-mount halogen lights.
 
The ceiling skylight lets in even more natural light and opens for ventilation. A retractable screen and nightshade on the skylight let the RVer control how much light comes in. Also included is the Cool Cat heat pump for air conditioning and heat. It's located in the lower cabinet and ducted throughout the unit. This system eliminates the traditional roof air conditioner and enables a low (aerodynamic) overhead clearance of only 8 feet 4 inches.
 
Cabinets are Brazilian Cherry color with frosted acrylic sliding doors. The flooring is easy to clean and skid resistant Beauflor, and the ceiling is lined with a vinyl soft touch material that is traditionally used in higher priced units. Then there is the chrome -- plenty of chrome. Designer countertops with chrome edges, as well as the cabinet trim and hardware, make for a very appealing look.
 
The MSRP of the trailer starts at $20,300.



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