With gas prices remaining near-historic lows, the economy on the rebound for many households, and interest rates near rock bottom, millions of Americans this year will be hitting the road this year in new RVs.

As reported by USA Today, the newest trend is toward lightweight trailers that can be towed behind many cars or small SUVs, opening up RV travel to a new generation, experts say. This year, the RV industry expects to ship 383,000 trailers and 55,000 motorhomes, the eighth consecutive year of growth.

“This is so cute!” exclaimed Pat Mouw, 63, as she checked out a 2017 Airstream Basecamp trailer at the 27th Annual Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show, one of the nation’s largest.

The 16-foot-long Basecamp weighs just over a ton, making it easy to pull with even a small SUV. Experts say many American families are moving away from owning a powerful towing-specific vehicle, and instead want to haul their gear with the car or SUV they normally drive. Small motorhomes also remain popular, many of them built on the Mercedes van platform.

Many manufacturers now offer similarly sized trailers, using lightweight materials, small propane-powered coolers and stoves, and flat-screen televisions, to keep the weight down. Many of the offerings are barely bigger than a queen-sized bed with wheels, but many shoppers say the idea of sleeping off the ground appeals to them. And while the RV lifestyle may not be for everyone, millions of Americans enjoy the chance to hit the open road, visiting national parks and small towns across the country.

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