Both Bambi and Caravel are names that have been associated with Airstream for decades. Bambi was first used when Airstream founder Wally Byam was a leading caravan from Cape Town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt, in the 1960s. Because the trailers were nimble, strong, and sure-footed, all single-axle Airstreams were nicknamed after "O'Mbambi" from the Umbundu dialect of the Bantu language.
Technically, the Bambi model is not entirely new, just the official classification is. For the 2019 model year, Airstream offers the Sport, which is nicknamed Bambi. Now, the Sport model line has become the Bambi model line, no nicknames needed.
The Caravel is equally as history-rich, as it first launched in the '50s and became increasingly popular in the '60s. Airstream says the first Caravels, named after Byam's love of the sea, were aimed to showcase small, lightweight design.
Today, Airstream offers a massive variety of options, between its iconic trailers and its luxurious recreational vehicles. The Nest and the Basecamp are technically Airstream's smallest and most affordable models, but they lack the signature aluminum exterior shape that the company's trailers are known for. The Caravel and Bambi combine compact design and Airstream style.
Both models sleep a maximum of four people, no matter the size. The difference is in the level of luxury and taste. The Caravel offers things such as the Quietstream climate control system, a nicer kitchen, more interior design options, and panoramic windows on both sides.
Available for order now, the 16-foot Caravel starts at $60,900 without taxes and fees, while the 16-foot Bambi starts at $48,900. Head to Airstream.com to examine how the floorplans differ.