Small and light – these are the trends of the Caravan Salon

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Dusseldorf In front of a motorhome, the snakes of the curious at the Caravan Salon in Dusseldorf are particularly long this year. Many camping fans want to see Hymers Vision Venture from the inside out. With BASF The Swabians have developed a concept car based on an all-wheel-drive Mercedes Sprinter, which should set standards for the future.

So you can take off at the rear of a wooden terrace, on the side of a barbecue grill is inserted. The bathroom has a rainforest shower. The floor is in modern concrete look rather than carpet or PVC, the walls are made of natural materials such as wood, felt or coated with wafer-thin slate. "We deliberately used modern materials. Bamboo panel instead of rustic oak, "says Martin Brandt, head of Erwin Hymer Group from Bad Waldsee.

The four-wheel drive car is painted dark green instead of white, as usual. BASF's special coating Chromacool reflects the sunlight and prevents the car from heating up considerably.

To the roof leads a solid wooden staircase with LED-lit steps, which offer additional storage space with drawers. The inflatable illuminated sleeping roof made of air-filled honeycomb pumps up in a minute – with either heated or cooled air. There is also a wooden roof terrace, on the car roof are solar cells. "That's almost a Tiny House," says Martin Brandt. "Even conceivable for students who can not find a room."

Without modern design, comfort and sophisticated features, caravanning will no longer be a thing of the past. Gone are the days when mainly seniors with caravans in oak veneer tingelten through the landscape. "The old cliché that caravans and motorhomes are just for the elderly and retirees, has long been refuted. Especially young people are enthusiastic about caravanning, "confirms Daniel Onggowinarso, Managing Director of the Caravaning Industry Association (CIVD).

interior

The interior takes distance from the well-known carpet and PVC facilities.

(Photo: Hymer)

According to a recent survey conducted by GfK, just under a quarter of Germans imagine being able to take a vacation with their motorhome or caravan over the next five years, most of them are under 45 years old. Especially with the millennials and young families, individual outdoor holidays are the trend. Caravaning is today considered cool and above all as "instagrammable".

This is also because digitization is taking caravaning to a new level. This starts with the configuration of the desired model including the equipment on the screen. And now almost all devices in the recreational vehicle can be controlled digitally via a central operating element. The fill levels of water tanks, battery and gas cylinder are also available via smartphone.

The Tabbert Cellini from the Lower Bavarian manufacturer Knaus Tabbert even the most diverse functions in the caravan can be operated by voice control. Commands like "I'm cold" or "Turn on light in the kitchen" are enough. Even complete light scenarios in the bedroom, kitchen or living room can be activated with keywords such as "good night" or "good morning".

The many new additional features, as well as assistance systems for easier parking, however, increase the weight. The problem: Since the EU driving license reform 1999 only vehicles up to 3.5 tons with normal passenger car driving license may be controlled. Therefore, the manufacturers must take care not to exceed this weight limit. All manufacturers are researching lightweight construction with alternative materials.

Modern wood design

On the roof of the motorhome are solar panels.

(Photo: Erwin Hymer Group)

Small and light – is a trend in motorhomes. So-called campervans at reasonable entry-level prices are becoming increasingly popular. Compact camper vans and boxcars have even surpassed the semi-integrated motorhomes (38 percent), accounting for 40 percent of total registrations. Campervans are aimed primarily at city dwellers who are looking for a multifunctional motorhome suitable for everyday use.

Hymer has a mini motorhome at the Caravan Salon Toyota Verso basis presented. The Crosscamper fits in any garage, can be used as a normal car and weekend for surfing or mountain biking. At the top you can fold up a sleeping roof with two beds. "We want to attract new customers who have never thought of camping before," says Brandt, head of the Erwin Hymer Group.

In Germany, the demand for motorhomes and caravans reaches a new high. In the first half of the year, 68,500 vehicles rolled off the line in this country, an increase of 1.2 percent. Almost half of them went abroad, even though exports fell slightly by 4.3 percent. "The manufacturers serve the domestic market first and foremost", explains the association CIVD. "Currently, the production capacity of most manufacturers in Germany is busy."

The German caravanning industry therefore expects 2019 to be the best year in its history. With new vehicles, used vehicles and accessories, a record turnover of 11.6 billion euros is targeted.

More: Family Hymer sold her motor home builder to Thor. There are differences in quality and speed of work. The bosses want to learn from each other.

(t) Caravan Salon (t) Camping (t) Motorhomes (t) Caravan (t) Mobility (t) Tourism (t) Travel (t) Holiday (s) Hymer (t) Vision Venture (t) BASF (t) Toyota (t) Knaus Tabbert (t) Martin Brandt

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