The E-Trek - Roadtrek's New Eco-Friendly Motorhome

Published on Sep 29, 2012 110,256 views

Mike reports on Roadtrek's new E-Trek from Roadtrek headquarters in Ontario. All electric, high tech and solar motorhome.

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We're journalists Mike and Jennifer Wendland, and we travel the country in an RV doing RV travel videos about the RV Lifestyle. Please subscribe to our channel for more RV Lifestyle videos! We like to virtually take you with us and regularly do lIve reports from our RV travels and also post new RV videos a couple times a week. Please subscribe so you'll know when there's new content here.

  • Y M
    Y M 4 years ago Review of Roadtrek Etrek: We are having a lot of problems with our etrek underhood generator. It will only engage for a minute if our battery bank falls below 1/3, which is frequent when running ac in Texas heat. Then we have to wait for the solar/regular 200 amp alternator to charge our battery bank, which is slow. The engine generator is supposed to put out over 5K when driving and 2.8 at idle, however, we can be driving 65 mph with the rear AC, refrigerator, and microwave on and watch our battery voltage fall as we are going down the road. These loads do not add up to 5K when driving, so theoretically, the battery voltage should remain normal or in a charged state, and it doesn't. It literally discharges as we go down the road, unless the underhood generator decides to kick in, which it may or may not do. (We can tell when it engages because we hear what we believe to be a solenoid clank, causes overhead led lights to flicker, and immediately feel the parasitic load in the engine.) We have the 6000 watt Aims inverter. When we try to plug in to shore power, the battery charger (which is separate from the inverter), gets extremely hot and trips the onboard battery charger circuit breaker. According to the Aims and Roadtrek owners manual, we should get an indicator light when we are connected to shore power, however we do not. The only charger we can determine is working when connected to shore power, is the one built in below the ottoman and not the one built into the Aims inverter. (The Aims inverter is under the couch.) We have only plugged in once as we are fearful that the charger gets so hot it could start a fire. We really love the concept of the etrek and would like to have these problems resolved, if possible. We are contacting a roadtrek dealer tomorrow so we have to cut our trip short...just wanted to give everyone a heads up of some of the problems we are having. Leo at Roadtrek has been very helpful but no solutions yet.
  • Phil Lott
    Phil Lott 1 year ago Y
  • Sergei Romanoff
    Sergei Romanoff 5 years ago Just think...ITS NOT ALL ELECTRIC! Retract that statement by superimposing CABIN ONLY
  • Sergei Romanoff
    Sergei Romanoff 4 years ago It's better.  Nice try.  I'm still confused and I'm an E motorhome specialist journalist.  It's not your fault that the words FUEL CELL have been confusing.  There are MORE THAN ONE TYPE.  Thermal, Chemical, Voltaic, Electrolytic, Liquid, Fume, Ultrasonic and ALL COMBINATIONS.  It's not a big deal.  Look it like a Laboratory with consolidated Apparatus.  That's the first problem, then there's the second interview and your guy garbles the propane word with a syntax error.  Guys.  Guys.  Like I tried to explain to your sales manager  last year.  It's time for an E tour, a Solar CrowdFunding with an E Boat in tow to raffle off.  Non Profit. Then I edit a Documentary together and call it ELON MUSK where R U... dressed like an astronaut.
  • roberto abrams
    roberto abrams 3 years ago Great RV, but I like the secure feeling of having a generator as a backup power source! I can deal with having no propane, but no ginny...that could become problematic in certain conditions/situations! Cheers
  • rdvqc
    rdvqc 2 years ago I am not sure they said no gen. It may be one of the first with the "under-hood gen" - basically a 2nd alternator that runs on the main engine and charges faster than the separate Cummins Onan type gen.
  • roberto abrams
    roberto abrams 2 years ago +rdvqc Hummm, you're referring to Roadtreks GU, or underhood generator! The Roadtrek RS Etrek doesnt have a GU in it! My Roadtrek 190 popular does...and its a great feature to have! The model Mike has is TOTALLY ELECTRIC!
  • rdvqc
    rdvqc 2 years ago Well, I consider the GU "electric" even though the engine spins it. The Roadtrek web site shows a standard24V, 3,500W on the E-Trek - even bigger than the 280 AMP, 12 V variant on my new Zion. I would love to have all the Lithium batteries and solar panels he has. My budget kept me to the GU, 400 amp AGM and 200 watts of solar. I also would not mind the 5,000 watt inverter he has. I do like Roadtrek's DC-based approach to the electrics. I really feel they are leading the field and the E-trek is the showcase!
  • roberto abrams
    roberto abrams 2 years ago +rdvqc Well the ETrek electric has no propane & no genny (GU or otherwise)! Everything works of the Solar panel & the inverter! Im not a fan of this vehicle, bec I've always had a generator in the RV's that I have owned...and propane! My 190 popular has 300 watts of solar, a GU, 6 lithium ion batteries (600 amp hours), and a 3000 watt inverter! It also has Volt start, but I've never seen my batteries go below 13.6 volts, so it not an important addition to me!
  • Coan Norman
    Coan Norman 2 years ago So pretty much every other motorhome with only 240w of solar on the top? SLA batteries at $140,000? HA
  • Animae
    Animae 5 years ago Love it.
  • Nicola Reddwooddforest
    Nicola Reddwooddforest 5 years ago In a few years they have them fully electric for sale.
  • Alan Heath
    Alan Heath 5 years ago I think that 240W is probably enough in Australia where the sun is strong although it depends on how much electricity is actually needed. I have less on my van in Europe and it is sufficient for me but I do not use much electricity.
  • John Salazar
    John Salazar 5 years ago Diesel is available almost anywhere here.Especially near highways. Your right on the panels though 240 watts is under PERFECT conditions. I would personally think you would need twice that generated to be able "live" without running the generator.
  • John Salazar
    John Salazar 5 years ago Your not comparing apples to apples. This vehicle doesn't have the fiberglass extended sides like the Serenity. Secondly the Free spirit ss doesn't have the quad capt chairs. just depends what your looking for.
  • John Salazar
    John Salazar 5 years ago About 140k, not bad when you consider the cost of the build and everything that goes into it.
  • John Salazar
    John Salazar 5 years ago Yes in terms of the possibility of things going wrong, but just remember that removing that energy source then requires you to do those tasks with a different source of power. In this case electricity. Electricity is definitely safer but requires you be plugged in or running the generator.
  • limespider8
    limespider8 5 years ago Can go for "hours and hours and hours". That doesn't tell us how long you have power when you are off the grid. I'd love to know realistically what solar panels mean for those living in vans long term...
  • Sergei Romanoff
    Sergei Romanoff 5 years ago With the use of FLEXIBLE SOLAR PANELS and the redesign of ZERO CLUTTER on the roof you might get 1000 watts.  Roll Up solar inside the Awning is just around the corner.  You could have an awning on both sides like Wings of a Bird with your roof panels so when stationery you could run your AC. 
  • Ashutosh Jaimini
    Ashutosh Jaimini 5 years ago is it true that absence of propane makes this vehicle more safer than its competitors?
  • Everett01
    Everett01 6 years ago Pretty damn sweet but $140,000 is just crazy guys. Too bad.
  • julosx
    julosx 6 years ago Ther's no way a diesel van can be "eco friendly", solar panels or not. The class A, diesel pushers are more interesting about it though, because their higher-end technology provides them with water filtration of exhaust fumes for instance, which is quite not the case with any Sprinter chassis.
  • Alan Heath
    Alan Heath 6 years ago I think some of the claims made here may be exaggerated. 240W solar, assuming the panels are the top of the range, will give a lot of freedom - I have less on mine and do not need to recharge constantly. But I am not using AC or television or an electric hot plate. The evoy system will recharge the batteries but how easy is it to find fuel for it in North America? I think I would have to see this work before I believe all the claims (which I very much hope are true).
  • Margene Habermacher
    Margene Habermacher 6 years ago WANT!
  • David Sanders
    David Sanders 6 years ago I agree with hxly2... would like to see this tech in a RT Agile... I would be VERY interested!!
  • road dog
    road dog 6 years ago what we really need is all electric 210 versatile so when i snneek the girls off from church i wont have generator noise