Why Are Truck Campers So Expensive? (Do They Hold Their Value)

Could it be… That truck campers go where other RVs and trailers cannot go? There are many reasons why truck campers are so expensive. Some make sense and are very legitimate reasons for manufacturers to boost the cost of buying one.

One reason is that truck campers can go where other RVs cannot. Thus the truck camper maker needs to make the camper stronger to handle those rough roads. Another reason is that it takes a lot of work to fit all the features into such a tiny space.

To learn more about why truck campers are so expensive just continue to read our article. Those legitimate reasons boost the price and make it harder for some people to afford a small camper like this.

Why Are Truck Campers So Expensive?


There are at least three more reasons why truck campers are more expensive than some RVS and trailers. Here are those three reasons:

1. Low production- truck campers are not made in the same numbers as regular RVS and trailers. The lower production numbers translate into higher production costs. This then translates into higher purchase prices for consumers.

Unfortunately, truck campers are not as popular as regular RVs and trailers. It could be the smaller space turns some potential customers off from buying one.

2. Their complex construction- When you have a tiny space to fit as many features inside as possible, it takes a lot of engineering and design skills to make it all work.

That extra work means that costs to build a camper go up. It is easier to put all the features in a regular RV or camper than in a truck camper. More space means things will be easier to fit inside than a tiny space.

Also, the production cannot be automated due to the small working area that comes with producing truck campers. This means more manual labor needs to be done which again boosts costs and pushes the purchase price higher.

3. An expensive truck is needed

This can discourage many potential truck camper owners. Not only are they looking to pay a lot for the truck camper, but they also have to shell out a lot of money to buy the heavy-duty pick-up truck that is required to haul these campers.

Truck campers are no longer light and that change in their weight means you need a truck that has the payload capacity to hold and haul the camper along with passengers and supplies.

When you look at all of these facts, you can understand why truck campers are so expensive. Having to possibly buy another truck keeps people from buying a truck camper. This cuts down on production numbers making these units very expensive.

Why are Truck Campers More Expensive Than Travel Trailers?

To start we will make one clarification. Not all travel trailers are cheaper than truck campers. There are some luxury and very big trailers that cost a lot of money. Truck campers will never compete with those no matter how many features are inside.

But the three reasons given in the last section will apply to this one as well. Truck campers are just not as popular as travel trailers and there are good reasons for that also.

The lack of popularity means that truck camper makers are not making enough campers to cut their costs. They are paying more for their construction materials and appliances, etc., because they cannot order enough at one time to cut their costs.

Many travel trailers may be produced on an assembly with automated equipment. This makes construction go faster as well as cheaper than other construction methods.

Another reason why truck campers are more expensive than travel trailers is purpose. More people are looking at living in their trailers full-time or frequent part-time use.

It is hard to live permanently in a truck camper thus more people opt to buy a travel trailer cutting the demand for truck campers. Low demand means low production and higher costs.

Why Are Lance RVs So Expensive?


The first reason that answers this question can be said in one word- experience. Lance RVs have been around for almost 60 years. They have experience in all aspects of building trailers and truck campers. Other reasons follow:

1. The company uses the best quality materials- Lance uses the best construction materials available. They have won awards for their construction practices thus better quality materials mean higher prices.

2. Well thought out designs and floor plans- the more time given to these two areas of construction, the more money that is spent. The more money that is spent on design and engineering means a higher price tag.

3. Innovation- Lance is known for being very innovative when it comes to adding features like Wi-Fi and USB ports. All of these innovations cost money which is then added to the purchase price

4. Top customer service and warranty- Not only is the company known for its excellent customer service but it is also known for its top warranty coverages. These features are never free.

5. High-end components- these items stand up to a lot of rough treatment and are made to last.

#6. Resale value remains high- because of the high quality of items and top construction skills, Lance RVs and truck campers hold their value for a long time.

This type of quality also cuts production demands as their trailers and campers last longer and people do not need to buy new every few years.

How Much is a Good Truck Camper?

Like all RVs and travel trailers, etc., your cost will depend on several factors. These factors include if you are buying new or used, the brand who makes the camper as well as the model and size of the truck camper. Not to mention the features that are included.

If you want to save some money and buy used, then you can get a good truck camper ranging between $700 and $65,000. Expect to pay on the higher end of that range for a very good camper.

When it comes to new, the prices depend on those factors already mentioned. For example, a mid-size Lance camper new can cost between $26,000 to $38,000 approx for a 16-foot model. It also sleeps up to 5 people.

An Eagle Cap 1200 model from another company and reaching 21 feet in length can cost between $53,000 and $66,000. Then a 10-foot Alaskan camper can cost only $35,000 but it needs a 3/4 ton truck to haul it.

A Nucamp Cirrus model can cost between $33,000 and $44,000 approx and has a length of only 17 feet 4 inches approx. Finally, a Palamino Rogue camper reaches only 12 and a half feet in length and costs between $14,000 and $18,000.

Your purchase price will depend on the features you want, the length, if you want slides, and the brand/model.

How Much is The Average Truck Camper?


The good news is that you may be paying on the lower end of the above examples if you want just an average truck camper with no frills. The more features you add the higher your costs will be.

Average truck campers have far fewer features than the luxury models but what they have in common with those luxury models is the same amount of space. Average truck campers will be the same size as most luxury models because there is only so much room in any truck bed.

Your costs will only be for the lack of features, how many people it can sleep, and so on. Many of the average truck campers will be in the $12,000 to $25,000 range with some exceptions.

The price you can expect to pay will also depend on the brand that built it. If you buy a Forest River Palomino, for $12,000, the quality of construction may not come near a truck camper made by another company for the same price.

Unfortunately, construction quality is lacking at all levels of truck campers just like it is with RVs and travel trailers. It is a gamble and you may not get the best camper made and will need to use that warranty to get the camper up to your expectations.

Are Truck Campers Worth It?

Yes, they are and when you look at the positives that come with truck campers, you will see that the benefits help reduce the cost anxiety. One of the reasons these truck campers are worth it is that you can go just about anywhere with them.

As long as you have the right truck doing the hauling, and top tires handling the rough roads, your camping experience may lack living space but be far more enjoyable.

Plus, if it is just the two of you, this compact space may be all that you need. There will be less area to clean and you can edit your items so you only take the important ones along on your vacation.

You can save money and space by leaving a lot of unnecessary items at home. It is a good way to downsize and live a better quality of life. But in the end, you have to make the decision if buying a truck camper is worth it to you or not.

It is not something for everyone and it takes special people to live together in such tight quarters. But before you decide, read the pros and cons section coming up to help you make an informed decision.

Do Truck Campers Hold Their Value?


This is a depends situation. It is said that in the first 15 years, the truck camper can depreciate by as much as 79%. But by then, you have got your money's worth out of it and this fact should not scare you.

It is said that truck campers hold their value quite well after that 15-year mark. However, there may be some exceptions to this situation. It is said that Lance campers hold their value quite well. That is due to how they are made.

Other factors that come into play will be how you treated the truck camper and whether it is in good condition or not. Another factor will be the type of truck camper you buy.

If it is full of slides and features, then you should get a higher resale value than an average camper without all the amenities. Then the market will dictate the price you get.

Truck Camper Pros And Cons

Take a look at the pros and cons before you make up your mind. L>ike anything else there are a lot of positives and negatives about owning a truck camper:

1. Pros:

  • Smaller length and easier to maneuver
  • Easier to drive and you can pull into just about any parking lot and space available
  • Less area to heat and cool
  • No engine to maintain or repair
  • No hitch issues to worry about
  • Easier to clean and store
  • No license plates to buy in many states
  • You can still tow a trailer

2. Cons:

  • You will need the right truck to haul the camper. This can be expensive
  • You are paying more per square foot compared to other RVs
  • The camper is always with you when you drive somewhere
  • Little cargo and storage space
  • Can be very small

Some Additional Words

Buying and using a truck camper may not be for everyone but for those people who it is for the experience is often very good. Besides the above pros, you will also have less maintenance to do and you may not have to worry about leveling jacks and similar jacks.

The truck camper also allows you to go just about anywhere and park where you need to be. They do not take up a lot of space and when you are on the road, you can sleep anywhere without worrying about setting everything up before you go to bed.

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