Let’s Take a Closer Look at the ‘Breaking Bad’ RV

It may not have been the most glamorous rig, but the “Breaking Bad” RV was undoubtedly one of the most famous. Walt and Jesse’s motorhome-turned-meth-lab endured gunshots, malfunctioning batteries, dead bodies, and ultimately, a junkyard crusher.

It became a symbol of one of the 21st century’s most acclaimed shows along the way. Let’s take a closer look! 

What Model Was the ‘Breaking Bad’ RV? 

Walt and Jesse of “Breaking Bad” used a 1986 Fleetwood Bounder, purchased (on the show) for about $7,000 in late 2008. One character nicknames it “The Krystal Ship,” a reference to “The Crystal Ship” by The Doors, and the rig’s function as a crystal meth lab.

About ‘Breaking Bad’

Critically-acclaimed crime drama “Breaking Bad” aired on AMC from 2008 to 2013. The show tells the story of mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher Walter White, played by Bryan Cranston. A diagnosis of terminal lung cancer spurs him to take dramatic action to protect his family’s financial future. 

By chance, he encounters former student and low-level meth cook Jesse Pinkman, played by Aaron Paul. The two team up to cook meth. Walter aims to earn enough money to leave his family a healthy nest egg after he passes.

The scheme spirals out of control, pitting them against Mexican gangsters, fast-food drug fronts, and neo-Nazi prison gangs.

“Breaking Bad” won 16 Emmys in its five seasons, including back-to-back Outstanding Drama Series awards in 2013 and 2014. The show was nominated nearly 60 times and gained significant popularity. The finale attracted more than 10 million viewers

Did They Really Destroy the RV in ‘Breaking Bad?’

The famous RV meets its demise in episode six of season three. Walt and Jesse narrowly escape being discovered by Walt’s DEA agent brother-in-law Hank. They reduce the rig to scrap in a junkyard, eliminating a massive piece of incriminating evidence. 

Or at least that’s what the show would have you think! All signs point to the actual “Breaking Bad” RV surviving, while a separate version got destroyed on camera. 

Where Is the ‘Breaking Bad’ RV Now? 

As of 2013, Sony Pictures owns the RV. The company reportedly planned to use it for studio tours.

In 2014, “Breaking Bad” star Aaron Paul reunited with his former cookhouse on the Sony lot. A 2018 contest offered fans a chance to cook breakfast in the RV, which suggests it was still sitting on the lot. 

About the Fleetwood Bounder RV Line

Fleetwood started in 1950 by offering improved blinds for travel trailers. Company founder John C. Crean began building his own trailers. An impressed blinds customer offered Crean a deal if he’d assemble more trailers. Shortly after that, Crean’s focus switched from blinds to travel trailers.

Fleetwood has produced the Bounder for about 35 years, making the 1986 model used in the show one of the oldest. Since its introduction in the mid-1980s, the Bounder has become the best-selling RV model of all time

The company’s decades of experience in the RV industry has earned customers’ trust over the years. If you bought a 2021 Fleetwood Bounder, it wouldn’t be as old as the one on the show until 2043. That’s some serious staying power!

Specs and Features of the 1986 Fleetwood Bounder

The 1986 Bounder ranged from 26.6 to 34 feet. Walt and Jesse likely used a 31- or 34-foot model.

Various models sleep between three and five people. It has a freshwater tank ranging from about 70 to 100 gallons. The gray and black tanks combine for a bit over 100 gallons of holding space. 

All models come equipped with wall-to-wall carpeting, a 10-cubic-foot refrigerator, a gas range and oven, and a microwave. They also contain either a 4- or 6.5-kilowatt generator.

A Look Inside the ‘Breaking Bad’ RV

Five years after the show ended, Paul returned to the “Breaking Bad” RV for a charity contest. Winners would cook (breakfast) inside the famous RV. 

In the promotional video, Paul takes viewers inside the RV. There, he finds Cranston, who’s apparently moved in. It’s a great look inside the rig and offers some laughs for fans of the show. See for yourself!

While RVers may not have been happy to have their rigs associated with meth, the “Breaking Bad” RV became a pop culture icon. The humble, now 35-year-old Fleetwood offered some nice perks in its time. Today, however, the 1986 Bounder may be best left on your TV screen. 

Still, these dependable motorhomes have gotten a modern upgrade. Older models will undoubtedly turn heads at the campground — even without the bullet holes in the door.

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