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First Time’s the Charm

Originally Published in Trailer Life Magazine


The Spyder, Winnebago’s inaugural toy-hauler trailer, zeros in on adventurers looking to stay on the shorter side of things

In the world of RV manufacturing, it isn’t unusual to see several renditions of a new product, whereby changes in features, options, build specs and floorplans are made over a period of time to refine the end result. In many instances, the second or third time’s the charm, so to speak, before the truly polished RV is up to the company’s — and the customers’ — standards.

Opposing sofas make into a large bed; the HappiJac bed lift reveals a queen-size bed. The kitchen is compact but workable.

Opposing sofas make into a large bed; the HappiJac bed lift reveals a queen-size bed. The kitchen is compact but workable.

Although building towables for only a few years, Winnebago is certainly no stranger to RV manufacturing and has amassed decades of knowledge and experience. The company capitalized on that experience when it began building its first travel trailer tow hauler, named the Spyder, earlier this year, and the result is a versatile lineup of three floorplans targeted at high-energy enthusiasts. The smallest of these sporty, no-nonsense trailers is the 24FQ, which we’ve highlighted here.

Winnebago designers started with a solid 8-inch I-beam frame, riding on a pair of E-Z Lube axles suspended by an Equa-Flex equalizer and augmented by the Correct Track alignment system. Added to this configuration are load range D rated nitrogen-filled 225/75R15 tires mounted to optional Lionshead aluminum wheels.

To complete the lower portion of the Spyder 24FQ, a fully enclosed, heated underbelly using a combination of corrugated plastic and Darco material is strategically placed to protect the 5/8-inch tongue-and-groove plywood flooring and components. A number of optional upgrades and useful exterior features grace the exterior, including smallish but hearty slam-latch front-compartment doors. Modern and stylish frameless windows add a touch of class, as do the smooth, glossy black gel-coated side walls. A practical accommodation is the almost-all-inclusive docking station, which houses the satellite and cable connections, city water port, black-tank flush and an outside shower.

Opposing sofas make into a large bed; the HappiJac bed lift reveals a queen-size bed. The kitchen is compact but workable.

Opposing sofas make into a large bed; the HappiJac bed lift reveals a queen-size bed. The kitchen is compact but workable.

Rounding out the exterior details are four-corner power stabilizer jacks, a Dometic power awning with LED lighting, a prewired TV location with a built-in bracket backer, a 4,000-watt Cummins Onan generator and two independent fuel tanks for fueling both the generator (18 gallons) and motorized toys (40 gallons). This full-featured Spyder undoubtedly caters to the toy-hauling RVer while remaining competitively priced.

Construction-wise, the all-aluminum framed roof and walls promise long life, and the standard insulation can be uprated to the Extreme Weather Package, which should provide enhanced comfort in hot and cold environments.

Once aboard the Spyder 24FQ, occupants are treated to bright yet richly toned interior hues and optional stainless-steel trim, medium dark natural wood and bold black and red accents. The rugged but classy-looking interior complements the nicely appointed kitchen. Here, the chef will find an optional 8-cubic-foot Dometic refrigerator beside a trim-matching microwave, range/oven and hood, and an ultracompact collection of cabinetry. Working counter space is limited, but the covers on the large double sink and range help.

Winnebago-Spyder_specsThe 24FQ has a limited supply of cabinets for other storage, most of which are located in either the master bedroom or the entertainment center (more on this below). Pretty much the only other indoor storage can be found in an enclosed aluminum-diamond-plate box in the floor. This compartment is ideal for chemicals that might spill or leak and could also be used for riding gear and helmets when chemicals are not stored here.

Now, back to the entertainment center. The Spyder’s optional entertainment upgrade is second to none in the world of travel trailers. Music fans will love the dramatic, full sound system made up of nearly everything Rockford Fosgate makes for vehicles. Included are a powered 12-inch subwoofer, massive five-channel 1,800-watt amplifier and four 6¾-inch speakers coupled with a pair of 6-inch wall-mounted exterior marine speakers — all controlled with a remote for ease of use. For visual entertainment, Winnebago includes a 39-inch Jensen TV residing on a swiveling bracket.

Like most shorter toy-hauler configurations, the 24FQ’s living room is part of the garage. When in the living mode, most of the area is devoted to opposing 60-inch sofa sleepers. A HappiJac bed-lift system reveals an overhead queen bunk.

Winnebago-Spyder_floorplanOnce the toys are unloaded, the rear cargo door can be fitted with optional rails to convert it into a raised patio featuring a unique folding table. In the open (level) position, the ramp cables are capable of supporting up to 1,500 pounds before requiring extra support. The garage portion of the Spyder offers a total length of 12 feet 6 inches before reaching the rear bathroom wall. Maximum width is 8 feet 1 inch before necking down at the galley, where floor space is reduced to 5 feet 2 inches. Even large, heavy toys can be safely secured to one of several 6,000-pound-rated, frame-mounted tie points.

Within the forward sleeping quarters is a full walk-around 60 x 80-inch memory-foam mattress tucked between curved nightstands with cabinets. From here, there’s an entry to the generously proportioned pass-through bathroom, which can also be accessed via the hallway door. There is nothing fancy found in the lavatory, but with a very tall and spacious glass-enclosed shower and plenty of room on and around the toilet, functionality quickly surpasses the need for luxury. The trailer is also equipped with a 25,000-Btu ducted furnace and can be optioned out with a 15,000-Btu low-profile roof air conditioner and Atwood tankless water heater.

If your travel trailer search takes you in the direction of a toy hauler, especially one that screams adventure, check out Winnebago’s all new Spyder 24FQ. It offers many desirable options, aggressive exterior graphics and a decent price, strong evidence that Winnebago did its homework.

Winnebago | 574-825-5250 | www.winnebagoind.com





Kevin Livingston

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