Caravan Review: Winnebago Burke

Article by · 5 May 2017 ·

Queenslanders take on the world’s biggest RV brand and come up with something impressive.

Not since the glory days of Chesney has Queensland really been on the map when it comes to caravan manufacturing in a big way.

That may all be about to change with the launch of Winnebago Australia’s first local-built range of caravans.

It’s almost two years since the world’s biggest name in RV manufacturing re-entered the Australian and NZ markets by way of an agreement with Brisbane’s Trouchet family.

The Trouchets started out hiring camper vans in the 1980s and eventually took their Apollo brand worldwide, which is how they came to get to know Winnebago.


When the new Winnebago Australia range was launched last year, the initial plan was import caravans from the US and build Winnebago motorhomes in Brisbane. The Trouchets had been successfully building motorhomes there for nearly a decade, mostly under the Talvor brand. More recently they’d also built limited numbers of Talvor caravans.

Now they’ve decided to take the plunge into caravan manufacturing under the Winnebago banner and they’re planning it on a big scale; hiring staff, buying new manufacturing equipment. They even snared a new production boss, Kevin Edwards, from Jayco.

So a lot now rests on how Aussie caravan buyers react to the first Brisbane-built Winnebago caravan.

The Burke (named after the western Queensland river) is the first of two models being launched this year and it doesn’t disappoint.

The seamless all composite finish is the standard you’d normally find in ocean going yachts. Sure there are others can make the same boast (Queensland’s Seachange caravans come to mind) however few aspire to mass produce in the way Winnebago now does.


There’s a single composite sandwich sheet for all the walls, the roof and the floor. That makes it solid, light and fully insulated. Laminated gel coated finish inside and out. The only ply you’ll find is in some of the cabinetry – and even that’s a class above anything else.

The van is fitted with quality gear throughout including the local gal-dipped chassis, AL-Ko suspension and running gear, Dometic European-style windows and Camec sound system.

As you walk around the Burke (looking beyond the striking Winnebago logo) there are all the features you’d expect in a luxury van. Upfront there’s a checker plate steel gravel guard, twin 15 inch alloy wheels (with a spare on the rear bumper), outdoor shower, awning and picnic table. There are speakers for the sound system under the awning and both TV and power plugs.

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About Rod Bruem

The founding editor of ROAM, Rod lived in a Viscount caravan as a cadet journalist in the 1980s. The idea for Time to Roam came after he inherited the caravan from his Aunt Dolce and he set about restoring it.


  • comment-avatar

    Peter and Jeanne Schydlo

    We would love someone from Winnebago Australia to contact us regarding a brand new Winnebago Burke B we just bought from Kratzmann Caravans in Queensland. We are having trouble findind a direct contact to Winnebago. We have issues with the van and would like their input.

    • mm

      Brendan Batty

      Hi Peter – get in touch with Apollo Caravan & RV Sales – they are the company owned sales arm. 1800 825 867

    • comment-avatar

      Jack Greenwood

      Hi Peter, just curious what your issues are with Burke as we are seriously considering to buy one???

  • comment-avatar


    We have just bought a Winniebago Burke B it is great but the sales staff are very ordinary they do not return calls n when we went to pickup our van after driving three days from up north with our old van they informed us the ESC was not ready n hadn’t even left Melbourne very bad communication that needs to be fixed up if they want to compete with jayco n new age we love the van but communication is bad the sales manager never even came out to see us n we where buying $57k van from them

    • comment-avatar


      sorry Steve I never got link to these replies till now ,would love to chat re van tweeks,we still love the van expecially the layout ,best weve seen for size done 30k km now

  • comment-avatar


    Was it Sydney RV at Penrith?

    • comment-avatar


      Sydney RV in Penrith has to be the worst company I have every had to deal with

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