Our COMPLETE Winnebago Boldt Review


It’s been a few months since the first launch of the Winnebago Boldt, a Sprinter-based Class B motorhome which debuted at RVX in Salt Lake City earlier this year.  Stef and I helped co-host the launch of the Boldt, so you may have seen that video (if not, you can watch it here).  In addition to that, we went in-depth with Chris from Winnebago – the Boldt’s main designer – in another video, that you can have a look at here.  But we never actually got to do one of our regular top-to-bottom, front-to-back reviews on it.

Well now that the Boldt is showing up in showrooms and out on the road, we thought we needed to fix that.  Behlod!!

 

There are two floor plans of the Boldt, and in this one, we reviewed the “KL”.  Those of you familiar with the Winnebago Travato K will immediately recognize why they went with “K” as the designation here.  This is a twin bed floor plan with the bathroom in the back and the galley up front – just like its Travato cousin.  There’s another “BL” floor plan we hope to review in the future.

And while much of the walk-through is self-explanatory, there are a few things that bear pointing out or emphasizing separately.  Some of these are things we can’t even show in the video:

  • The BOLDT was born as a Lithium powered Class B.  This is not a case of having a product and then figuring out how to add a Lithium power system to it.  There are no apologies here for not having a generator.  This is a forward looking coach, and if you really want an old-school rig with a propane-powered-lettuce-freezer, a wake-you-up-furnace, and an annoy-everyone-within-earshot generator then you need to look elsewhere… like the 1990s.
  • The Pure3 system on the Boldt is more than powerful enough to run the induction cooktop, the electric-only refrigerator, your waffle iron (watch the video) and whatever else you may plug in to the vast collection of outlets.  Stef and I have been rolling in a coach with the same sized lithium system for several months now, and usually we don’t know what to do with all the extra power.
  • You can’t see this in the video, but the coach is exceptionally well-insulated for a van.  This makes it energy-efficient and quiet.  You can see some of the insulation in our video with Chris.
  • This coach has a ridiculous amount of cargo capacity.  OVER TWO THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED POUNDS of cargo capacity.  That is literally the largest cargo capacity I have ever noticed in one of our reviews.  To put this in real terms, that’s one and a quarter tons.  Over three hundred gallons of water.  So yeah, you could install a hot tub.  Insane.

There’s a lot more to like about the Boldt, but you can see most of that in our video.  Watch the video, see what you like or don’t about the Boldt, and then sound off in the comments below!

(Except if you’re going to try to convince me that absorption refrigeration, single-point RV furnaces, and batteries-you-have-to-add-water-to are cool technologies… then don’t bother.  I’m right on this one.)



James is a former rocket scientist, a USA Cycling coach, and lifelong fitness buff. When he's not driving the RV, or modifying the RV (or - that one time - doing both at once), you can find him racing bicycles, or building furniture, or making music. In his spare time, he works for a large IT company.


    34 thoughts on “Our COMPLETE Winnebago Boldt Review

    1. Jerry

      I cannot find any instructions on when the solar panel charge the battery. Does the inverter have to be on or not.
      Why couldn’t Volta have used two 2000 sine wave inverters connected together to make 4000 watts, but be able to be used separately when the a/c is not needed. 2000 watts would run the micro wave, induction stove, and lights. The 2000 only uses about 7 to 9 watts when on vs the 3600 watt inverter which uses 100 watts.
      If Winne or Volta decides to use this idea I hope they give me a free replacement for the suggestion.

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        The inverter does not have to be on for the solar charging to work.
        The Pure3 system is a nominal 48 volt battery system. There are only certain inverters made that will work (as opposed to a 12v system, where there are many choices).
        A staged inverter setup as you’re suggesting is an interesting idea.

        Reply
      1. James - Post author

        Hi Jake –
        The battery in this rig is not Lithium Iron Phosphate. It’s NMC.
        But in any case, we try not to quote amp-hours anymore. Since there are lithium battery systems with different nominal voltages, amp-hours are not directly comparable from one system to another. And certainly not comparable between lithium (where you can use almost all the power in the battery) and traditional lead acid batteries (where you had best stop at 50%). Instead, we use watt-hours.
        The battery in the Boldt has 11,600 watt-hours of capacity that are available to use. I estimate air conditioners at 1800 watts (which may be high, and assumes no cycling). That gets you about 6 and a half hours of non-stop air conditioning with this rig. If it’s cooler out or if your air conditioner begins to cycle, runtime will be longer.
        We test this same battery system (in a different rig) in this video: How Long Can We Run the Air Conditioner

        Reply
    2. Judi L

      Really enjoyed the break down of the Boldt, there is alot of great added features. So glad they listened to my suggestion about adding an access panel to area in back of van, hope to see for Travato too! Thanks guys for all the great videos and information.

      Reply
    3. Rich D.

      I always enjoy your reviews, would it be possible in future videos to say what the MSRP is on the rigs so we have a way to gauge whether the van you’re reviewing is close to what the viewer can afford? Also I have an unanswered question. Now that you have spent a good deal of time in a KL floor plan, which do you prefer , the GL or the KL? Thanks for the great videos I always look forward to a new one. Safe travels.

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        We really try to stay away from quoting prices in our reviews for a few reasons. First – they date the review. Even if we just mentioned MSRP, it changes from year to year.
        Second – the MSRP is usually very different from the price you might wind up paying, so it’s a bit misleading.

        As to the “G vs K” question. Absolutely and without hesitation: G.

        Reply
        1. Rich D.

          Thanks for the reply, would love to know what it is that you like about the G over the K. I don’t think there are any other people out there that have your reputations as RV reviewers that have had the experience of spending considerable time in the G and K Travatos. Your observations to details and what works and what doesn’t are appreciated by folks like me who are on the hunt for the best RV that fits. Thanks again.

    4. Caleb

      LONG time fan first time commenting.
      I agree with you, this is getting really close to optimal design, but…

      Why do most manufacturers still use propane on diesel rigs? Diesel air and water heaters are so much more efficient, safer and tap off the existing vehicle fuel tank. Huge space saving (no propane tank) as well. It seem so logical, I just cant figure out why they don’t.

      Thanks, and you folks are the gold standard for RV reviews!

      Caleb

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        I believe they’re a little more complicated to install (which drives up costs), and there are altitude limitations on the diesel burners. (As in – they have trouble at altitude. But I’ve never owned one, so that’s just what I’ve heard.)

        Reply
      2. Diane

        I love multi plex. My diesel tech hubby that does all the wiring on new fire response vehicles and electrical troubleshooting of rigs, is of a different opinion. I am looking forward to your upcoming post on the issue.

        Reply
    5. Jan Landquist

      Hi from Sweden.
      The new “Bolt” is really a nice van.
      It is apparently built for use
      in a little cold. But the water tank that lies outside
      under the car how does it cope with tex (- 25 degrees cold)?
      And how hot can Truma Combi keep inside the car.
      Keep in mind that for about 14 days it is only clouds and snow,
      the sun may appear only about 2 hours per day!
      Ms Jan May and ‘LOKE’.

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        Sweden! Hello, we’re glad to have you!
        The water tank is a double-walled tank, with insulation between the layers, and a heating pad against the innermost layer.
        I can’t say for certain about -25, but it should be good to pretty cold temperatures.

        I would love the opportunity to get to Sweden to try it out!

        Reply
        1. Jan Landquist

          Thank you so much for the answer. [It would be great fun if you came to visit Sweden. And then bring either a [BOLDT or LANCE] with you over here. Preferably a BOLDT.
          We will try to write a little on your E-mail about what could happen, if you had the opportunity to come and do one (holiday – trip). We will set up in every way to show a little of Sweden. Sincerely. Jan May and LOKE

    6. Gene

      I am still for the Travato KL for the wider beds, they are wider. The MB chassis just not as wide as the Dodge Promaster and this translates to narrower beds in the MB.

      My main reason to stay with the Travato is the gas engine and how it can be used to recharge the batteries with no real functionality issues that a diesel engine would have.

      If I’m correct, doesn’t MB frown on idling the engine for any length of time over concern about the emissions systems? I’m sure MB and Winnebago will Highly recommend to recharge the batteries when running down the road. This could pose issues for boondockers that park for lengths of time and then needing to drive around for a while to recharge…

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        In practice (at least for us), the need to idle to recharge rarely happens. So idling restrictions really wouldn’t bother us at all.
        In over three years of RVing with lithium rigs, we’ve idled to charge twice. And one of those was only because we were making a video.
        We generally move around so much that the battery always seems to be charged up.

        Reply
    7. Michael Yates

      Great video review. My wife and I keep going back and forth on which we like better, the KL or the BL. (Lichtsinn has one of the few videos of a live BL that I’ve found). I wish the Boldt was around eighteen months ago when we ordered our 70B Era. We love our RV and have over 30K on it, but the Boldt so much more. Winnebago is getting it, big battery that can run for days, four season ability (we live in Minnesota and have camped when the temp was in the teens) and finding places to store things are all great design choices. Only concern would be the size the refrigerator. Our 6.3 c.f. combo is great and loosing a third of the cold storage would be the only compromise that I would see in the Boldt. Great job Winnebago and thanks you two for taking the time and effort to do an in-depth review.

      Reply
    8. wes

      Love the concept, just not the floorplan. Those seat belts at the back must be to keep the corpse from rolling on to the ground as I cant see how you could use them without a backrest.
      Love that you look over and under the unit makes for a much more complete review. I think when it comes to controls KISS works well. You see those lcd’s in forest river products and I cringe. They struggle to get something as simple a leak-proof roof done right.

      Reply
    9. Graham Smith

      I was able to tour the K floorplan with Chris B. at the Phoenix rally but have not had a chance to get a good feel for the B plan so I hope to see that. One thing I just noticed in your review is that, while there is a really nice speaker system inside there’s no stereo or outside speakers. Since I never use the TV or Jensen in my Travato, I wouldn’t care, but it’s still a surprise as there is room for something.

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        This is just my opinion here, but I think they’re trying to get away from those exterior speakers. I’ve never seen anyone use them, and mostly, they just annoy the neighbors.
        Don’t take that as an official announcement from Winnebago though.

        Reply
        1. James - Post author

          Well, I have my own theories about why they might have dropped the seldom-used, complicated, redundant, dated, and poor-sounding Jensen from this new coach… 😉
          But I don’t speak for Winnebago officially, so I’d have to say I don’t really know.

    10. Robin

      Differences between the Boldt KL and the Travato KL? Do the windows open on the Boldt? Are the beds more narrow than the Travato? Does the beds have the same sleep system under the mattress and does the head come up like the Travato?

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        Well, there are LOTS of differences, but to address your specific questions:
        Yes, the windows open on the Boldt – though some of that is determined by whether or not you get the glass windows or the dual pane acrylic windows.
        Didn’t measure the bed width, but they seemed perfectly fine to us. We didn’t notice them being narrower.
        These beds have a slat system of support underneath them, not the Froli springs. And no, the headrest does not raise.

        Reply
    11. Wally Wojo

      I’ve been following your videos for a long time and feel I must comment on your description of the 120v outlets. THANK YOU! for the accuracy in you reporting. It’s very frustrating to keep hearing from all the professionals 110, 110 110….. If the presenters cannot get this basic electrical issue correct, I question the acuracy of the rest of their video.

      Reply
    12. Paul Alan Jackson

      So many things borrowed from the industry leader PleasureWay, so muchl but still use switches. Come on Winnie, get with the MultiPlex and TouchScreens…..great review but would buy a PW hands Down! Just for the Quality Alone!

      Reply
      1. James - Post author

        Our views on multiplex wiring in RVs have evolved, and now are contrary to yours.
        Look for an upcoming post about why.

        Reply
      2. carleen

        i just rented a 2019 Coachmen Galleria with the multiplex system because I am down to two final contenders, the Travato and the Galleria.
        The entire section of lighting in the back of the coach didn’t work properly and the only manual light switch for reading available was a useless blue crystal-type light fixture.
        It may be anecdotal, but it kind of confirmed my concerns with everything wired together, when one thing goes out, multiple things could go out.
        In addition to this, I don’t know why it’s progress to have to go across a “room” to turn on a switch. It’s better to have it right where it is needed in my opinion.

        Reply
        1. James - Post author

          “In addition to this, I don’t know why it’s progress to have to go across a “room” to turn on a switch.”
          …And you’ve hit on one of our key objections to multiplex wiring in RVs.

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