[Winnebago]Classic and Cool American Camper | MOBY [モビー]

MOBY introduces an article written by a writer who actually enjoys staying in a car or camping car from the web magazine DRIMO, which distributes outdoor and car travel information such as camping, staying in the car, van life, etc. To do. *The content of the article below is a quote/reference from DRIMO


This time, I would like to introduce the Winnebago FORD E-350, our family’s camper.

Needless to say, Winnebago is a well-known American camper car manufacturer, and mainly produces camper cars based on large vehicles. .

Although it has become a little old-fashioned now, it still retains the warmth and charm of its age.

In addition, the size and large displacement V8 engine, etc., is a powerful one with a strong American car taste.

Exterior

It’s a style that everyone can easily imagine as THE camper, and it’s built to make the most of the power of the base E-350 large van made by FORD.

Overall length: 6.77m, width 2.43m, and height 3.25m, it’s bigger than the 2t trucks you often see.
The construction of the base vehicle part is a so-called American car with a solid feeling, and the doors are also quite thick.

The living part of the body that has been added is made of resin such as FRP and is a little soft, and the dust is not suitable, for better or worse, it also feels like an American car.

This area doesn’t seem to have much effect on the actual camper life, so I don’t care about it.

Interior

The interior is a classic style that emphasizes wooden construction, and I like the faint scent of wood.

In addition to the sofa and table, it is equipped with a large refrigerator, microwave oven, gas stove, toilet and shower, etc. In the United States, Hollywood seems to use it as a dressing room, so it is more than enough for normal camping.

In my house, I have also modified and added a TV, navigation system, spotlight, FF stove, etc. by DIY.

The bed is a bunk bed and 2 twin beds (usually a sofa), and with a little patience, 6 adults can sleep. We are a family of five, so we can spend comfortably without any problems.

Storage is sufficient, and long-term expeditions are no problem.

Driver’s seat/passenger seat

A captain’s seat is a comfortable seat that seems to be saying this. It’s very comfortable to sit in and the viewpoint is high, so I feel like I’m “steering” this large vehicle, and I think that’s the point that gives me a sense of satisfaction.

Regarding the wide width and length, and the left steering wheel, driving itself is easy once you get used to it.

With the effect of the back and back camera, it can be done surprisingly normally, but the width is still a bottleneck in Japan, so I think there are situations where you have to choose the way.

Also, since there is no genuine tachometer, I installed it additionally.

bunk bed

This bunk bed is the largest bed, and although the roof height is lower in the head direction, it is about the size of a semi-double bed. It’s a bit tricky to climb, but it’s the most popular bed because it’s comfortable.

In addition, you can usually store a considerable amount of luggage such as bags and bedding.

sofa bed

Behind the front passenger seat is a sideways three-seat sofa, but it can be easily converted into a bed when sleeping, and if you do not force it, two adults can sleep.

An FF stove is installed under this bed, so your feet are warm in winter. I usually spend most of my time here on the sofa.

Originally, the bed behind the driver’s seat can also be unfolded, but in our house, it is DIY exchanged and fixed to a large table, and it is only used as a table set.

If you use it as a bed, two children can sleep comfortably.

kitchen/bathroom

The kitchen is equipped with 3 gas stoves and a microwave, which is more than enough for a campsite. Since most campers have BBQs outside, it’s rare that all three stoves are full.

The refrigerator and freezer have the same capacity as an apartment living alone, and this is also necessary and sufficient.

And the shower is also fully equipped, and the tank capacity is large, so you can shower without hesitation.

There is also a hot water shower outside, which is very useful when swimming in the sea or washing dishes outside.

driving performance

The installed 7.5L V8 engine is indeed powerful, and it emits a pleasant and powerful V8 sound, and it goes slowly and steadily over long distances. This feels like an American car, and it feels very good.

Because it is FR and has a long wheelbase, the ride comfort and drivability are good, and the straightness is high, and the highway is fine.

However, it is necessary to be careful because the steering wheel will be taken quite a bit in the ruts during cruising.

After all, it is clear that the V8 engine is best suited for driving slowly on a vast land like the United States, but if you drive safely and at a safe speed, you can also drive comfortably in Japan. Also, the tires cut well, so it can turn in a small radius.

The fuel consumption may seem unbelievably bad (3-4km/L) from today’s common sense, but it’s a reasonable assumption that I don’t drive it every day.

Gasoline enters more than 100L in regular. Even if the fuel consumption is bad, it feels like an American car that I want to drive all the time, and I am very satisfied with driving.

Breakdown/maintenance cost

Since vans are originally required to be sturdy, there are surprisingly few frame or mechanical failures. I got the muffler off once…

Simple mechanisms such as a ladder frame, a simple OHV engine, and a non-multi-stage transmission may be what keeps it sturdy.

The problems I have experienced so far in about 50,000 kilometers of driving are that it has become slightly overheated and that the AT shifting is uncomfortable, but it has been mostly cured by replacing or replenishing the oil.

As much as possible, we do DIY repairs and maintenance as a family, but since there is not much information available, we are doing our best with reference to the E-350 maintenance book.

We maintain the condition by conducting regular oil changes and checking each part when washing the car.

There are various maintenance costs such as high taxes due to displacement and double tires, but the biggest problem is what to do with the parking lot because it is huge.

My house is in the suburbs and I am lucky because it is possible to park on my property, but in the city center the parking space is likely to be the biggest problem.

DIY-related

Since most of the interior is made of wood, it is easy to add some equipment and decorations by drilling holes and fixing bolts and nuts.

For example, I’ve added a hanger rack to prevent seasonings from falling out of the kitchen while driving, added LED lighting, added a tachometer, converted to an FF stove, and so on.

summary

For those who are interested in camper vans and American cars, this is one I would definitely recommend.

I never get tired of this basic and classical feeling of THE camper, and even if it doesn’t work, it has a charm that makes me want to decorate it in my garden.

Do you need such a large displacement engine? Do you have 3 stoves? Isn’t it too big? There are many things to think about, such as you can’t go in narrow places, but this is the “comfort” and “wastefulness in a good sense” of American cars, and you can enjoy a luxurious trip while feeling a relaxed and slow time.

That’s the reason why I like it the most.

Writer: Keigorira

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