Airstream trailers are well-known for their distinctive design, but the 25-foot 1971 Avion travel trailer we are exploring today shares a similar aesthetic. Bill and Kim have impressively restored this classic model, a remarkable feat given its age and condition.

Avion, established in 1956, produced aluminum trailers until 1990. Their designs were so similar to Airstream’s that a lawsuit ensued, which Avion won, highlighting the common practice of aluminum construction among various manufacturers like Spartan and Silver Streak.

The restoration by Bill and Kim took three years, involving a meticulous process to ensure structural integrity. They undertook a shell-off restoration, detaching the shell from the chassis to prevent frame distortion. This involved drilling out rivets, removing the interior, and using car jacks and cinder blocks to lift the shell before pulling out the chassis.

Their work extended to frame restoration and floor replacement, followed by reattaching the chassis to the shell, a challenging but thorough restoration method allowing for updates like new insulation and wiring.

The exterior boasts features like torsion bar suspension, stabilizer jacks, and chrome wheels with sensors. The Avion’s construction includes 14 panels and roughly 2000 rivets, in contrast to Airstream’s six-panel design. Original elements like windows were preserved, and the roof was reinforced for an A/C unit.

Storage spaces are abundant, including a rear bumper for a toolbox, a front shield with Raptor lining for window protection, a repurposed battery box for an outdoor shower, and two propane tanks. Additional features include power and water connections, an instant water heater, and a backup camera. The old fridge compartment now houses a 12V switch for power selection.

Inside, the kitchen has overhead cabinets, a wooden countertop, a sink with a water filter, and Ikea storage units. Most overhead cabinets are original, repainted for a fresh look. A bar area, 12V fridge, wine cooler, and storage for kitchen essentials, including a microwave and a portable power system, are also present.

The interior’s seating area is bright and surrounded by windows, with a U-shaped couch convertible into a queen bed. The bedroom has two RV-sized twin beds with ample storage, a 13,500-BTU A/C with a heat pump, and a Maxxair fan.

The bathroom, at the trailer’s end, is spacious with a sink, cabinets, a window, a shower with the original tub, a urine-diverting toilet, and a small fan. This meticulous restoration showcases Bill and Kim’s dedication to preserving a classic piece of travel history.