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The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top – Is It Right for Your Family?

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top – Is It Right for Your Family?

Back in late 2020, Winnebago introduced a new motorhome that was about the size of a camper van but had the space and features of a larger rig. The RV, called the Ekko, was an instant success. About a year later, the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top was revealed. With the current soaring interest in smaller RVs, we thought we’d take an in-depth look at the Ekko Pop-Top for the benefit of any of our readers who are considering a small (but mighty!) little traveling rig.

What Is the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top?

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top is a Class Class C RV that allows for the accommodation of up to four travelers. 

This pop-top version is very nearly identical to the original Ekko, but with a pop-top roof that creates an additional sleeping area fit for two. Though, at only 52 inches wide, the additional two sleepers would likely be most comfortable if they’re little children (or adults who like each other… a lot! 😉🤭). The little bedroom loft is a very acceptable 79 inches long and has a FROLI® sleep system and both 110V AC and USB charging ports.

We should probably note that if you were a fan of the original Ekko’s luggage rack, exterior kitchen, aluminum short cab running board steps, and the ladder, those are all off the table with the pop-top version. Other than those, the only significant modifications to the interior are the pop-top roof and the collapsing interior ladder used to access it.

The impact of that singular modification is significant, though, because it doubles the sleeping capacity of the rig from two to four people (maximum). This is most beneficial to families who’d like a compact rig that’ll sleep a couple of adults and a couple of kids. It also makes the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top one of the few camper vans or Class B/C RVs that can sleep more than two people in relative comfort.

The Winnebago Ekko has an interior height of 6’8”, giving it a feeling of spaciousness while allowing all but the tallest RVers to stand upright comfortably.

On What Chassis is the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top Built?

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top is built on the popular Ford Transit chassis. (You may have seen our post on the Ford Transit Electric which is built on the same chassis.)

Photo of the Winnebago Ekko on the road in the mountains

The Winnebago Ekko and Ekko Pop-Top are built on the Ford Transit chassis. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

The Ekko Pop-Top gets its power from Ford’s twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost gas engine with an efficient 10-speed automatic Selectshift® transmission. The engine produces 310 hp and 400 foot-pounds of torque, which should be sufficient to keep it moving along briskly.

In addition, it has a towing capacity of 5,000 lbs, with 500 lbs maximum vertical tongue weight, and a 7-pin connector – all enabling you to tow smaller vehicles. (For more on what you need to know about towing, see our post on towing a car behind an RV.)

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top comes standard with a Cummins Onan generator. (See our post on Onan RV generator maintenance for more information on how to keep your Onan generator performing optimally.)

How Many People Can Safely Travel in the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top?

The Ekko safely seats four travelers.

The dinette seat, capable of accommodating two, has upper and lower child seat anchors for safely carrying the wee ones. This was well-thought-out because the passenger-side captain’s chair is situated diagonally from the dinette seat so that the passenger in the front can reach back to assist young children in mid-travel, while everyone stays safely belted in place.

Speaking of the front captain’s chairs, they each have 3-point seatbelts, as do the dinette seats. The driver and passenger sides of the cab also have airbags.

The ground fault interrupter, high mount brake lamps, and fog lamps all add to the safety features offered in the Ekko Pop-Top.

Can the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top Really Sleep 4 People Comfortably?

Yes! So – we joked earlier about the width of the upper loft in the Ekko Pop-Top, but here’s a little perspective for you. A standard queen-size bed is 60” x 80”, and the upper loft bed in the Ekko Pop-Top is 52” x 79”. So, while the length of the upper loft bed is very close to the length of a standard queen bed, it’s a full 8 inches narrower.

However, this is the same pop-top that Winnebago uses on the Solis Class B RV, and it seems to be quite acceptable for kids or fairly fit adults who are fond of one another. So…let’s move on to the first-floor bedroom area.

The Ekko’s rear bedroom uses the WinnSleep® system, Winnebago’s flexible bed kit that allows the conversion of twin beds to a queen-sized bed very easily.

When arranged as twin beds, you’ll have two separate beds, each 32” wide x 76” long, with a nightstand in the middle. When converted to a single larger bed, you’ll have a standard queen sized bed, 60” x 80”.

Photo of the main/first floor bedroom area set up as a queen bed

The first-floor/main bedroom can be set up either as twin beds, each 32” wide x 76” long, with a nightstand in the middle or as a standard queen sized bed. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

By the way – the flex bed kit stores under the beds, where you’ll also find some wardrobe storage with a metal clothes rod.

What Size Holding Tanks Does the Winnebago Ekko Have?

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top has a 50-gallon RV fresh water tank, a 51-gallon RV gray water tank, and a 5-gallon cassette toilet. All surprisingly large for such a small RV.

It also has a 31-gallon fuel tank (without reported fuel economy ratings, we can’t accurately predict the available range… though estimating between 10-15mpg would mean you could get from 300 to 450 miles on a tank).

Is the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top Well Prepared for Winter Camping?

If you like winter RV camping, you’ll like the Ekko with its all-wheel drive and extensive four-season insulation in the walls, floor, and roof. It also has dual-pane acrylic windows and a heated basement/exterior storage and water service center to help prevent the plumbing from freezing.

The holding tanks and water lines of the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top are inside the coach and above the floor level, another nice touch that greatly improves its all-weather capabilities.

Obviously, though, the pop-top bedroom isn’t as well insulated when it’s open/expanded. The canvas walls and zippered window covers are substantial, but it’s all still canvas. The upper loft is likely to be less warm in winter and less cool in summer than the downstairs sleeping area. But the loft should still be usable in all but the hottest or coldest weather.

Photo of the Winnebago Ekko traveling along snow covered roads

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top is very well set-up for winter camping with 4WD, heated basement storage and water service, and substantial four-season insulation in the walls, floor, and ceiling. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

The pop-top has a vent for summer which, along with the ability to use a small fan via either the 120V or USB outlets and the cross-breeze allowed by the screen windows on both sides, should make for a more comfortable sleeping experience. (Note that the Ekko has a 13,500 BTU air conditioner.)

The Ekko Pop-Top is also equipped with an efficient, yet powerful, Truma VarioHeat furnace which, in winter, will deliver warm air throughout the interior. In combination with a sleeping bag or two, the loft sleeping area should be cozy & useful in all but the coldest temperatures.

What’s This About a Disappearing Shower?

It’s true! The Winnebago Ekko has a disappearing shower!

So here’s the deal:

Winnebago tried hard to avoid the typical wet bath experience for its Ekko line-up, but the rig couldn’t really fit a full dry bath. Designers addressed this conundrum by creating a hinged-wall system that allows you to quickly and easily convert the bathroom to a large-ish shower by moving aside the sink, thus opening up more shower space.

When you open the bathroom door you’ll find what appears to be a dry bath without a shower. You’ll see a sink, vanity mirror and toilet, a medicine cabinet, a tissue holder, a hook, and a small window.

Photo of the vanity in the bathroom of the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top

Upon entering the bathroom there’s a vanity, toilet, and a small window, but pivoting the sink to the right is when the magic happens. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

When you pivot the sink to the right, the sink and toilet are suddenly hidden, and a dedicated shower stall is revealed, with a curtain on a track, insulating the shower from the rest of the area. This avoids having a wet bath in the Ekko in an incredibly clever manner.

Photo of a man bringing the shower curtain around to seal off the shower area

After pivoting the sink wall to the right and revealing the shower, the shower curtain is drawn around a track to seal off the area from the rest of the bathroom. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

It’s a small but extremely efficient space.

Incidentally, an Oxygenics showerhead comes standard in the Ekko and Ekko Pop-Top, offering greater water pressure, while still saving water.

Does the Ekko Pop-Top Have a Kitchen?

It does! In the galley/kitchen area, you’ll find laminate countertops with an adjustable extension that allows for an additional cooking prep area (or it can be used as a workstation). You’ll also find a stainless steel sink with a cover, a two-burner propane range cooktop (also with a cover), a 5.3 cu ft refrigerator, and a microwave oven.

How’s the Storage in the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top?

The storage in the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top is fairly substantial. There are multiple storage compartments including one that serves as a pass-through basement with 54.6 cu ft of space.

The large pass-through compartment offers sufficient space for recreational gear such as skis, fishing poles & gear, kayaks & paddleboards (inflatable or not), golf clubs, or even a couple of bicycles. And it’s heated, offering safe storage even for winter camping.

Photo of the large pass-through basement storage area with a bicycle being removed to illustrate the size of the space

The large heated pass-through basement storage area has ample room for lots of recreational gear. (Photo credit: Winnebago)

How About Off-Grid Power in the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top?

The Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top is ready for boondocking with a hard-wired 220-watt Fleximat solar panel (in lieu of the 455 watts of solar on the standard EKKO), its standard 320-amp-hour lithium-ion battery, and a second alternator dedicated to charging the batteries (so you arrive at your next campsite with your battery having been charged on the way).

The rig also has a 30-amp power cord and a 2,000-watt pure sine wave DC-to-AC inverter. (For more on RV inverters, see our post asking and answering the question, “What is an RV inverter?”)

The Ekko Pop-Top is also equipped with a Truma AquaGo Comfort Plus tankless water heater. The “Plus” part of the water heater model name is due to the inclusion of a recirculation pump and additional plumbing that allows the water heater to circulate hot water through the lines, reducing the wait for it to run up at any faucet.

How Much Does the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top Cost?

The price of the Ekko Pop-Top is currently somewhat elusive. The Ekko (non-pop-top) is listed on the company’s website as starting at $171,845, but inquiries about the pop-top option direct buyers to their dealer for pricing information.

Would the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top Work for Your Family?

So, with all of the above information in mind, what do you think? Would the Winnebago Ekko Pop-Top work for your family?

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Rich G

Tuesday 24th of May 2022

Did they replace the cassette toilet with 31gal tank?

TheRVgeeks

Tuesday 24th of May 2022

Woops! Good catch, Rich. Nope... that was an editing mistake. Still a 5-gallon cassette toilet. We've updated the article to reflect that. Thanks!

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