If you would have guessed a few years ago which major German automaker would be first out of the gate to develop a ground-up electric passenger van, the obvious answer would have been Volkswagen. But Mercedes-Benz snuck in earlier this year with the Concept EQV and promised to ready it before year-end. The production EQV debuted this week makes good on that promise, offering zero emissions driving for up to 250 miles (405 km) per charge. It'll be available in two different wheelbase lengths with up to eight seats.
It's become all too common for a startup to materialize out of nowhere with claims of having the next groundbreaking electric car. In fact, it's happened twice this month alone. Much less common is for that startup to accompany those claims with a production-ready vehicle. But here comes Drako Motors, a Silicon Valley-based startup you've probably never heard of, with an all-out hyper-GT it says is ready for production. Four doors, four seats and four motors, the 1,200-hp GTE debuts as the world's most powerful sedan, a grand tourer built to exceed 200 mph (322 km/h) and vector sharply around twisting pavement with four passengers and all their bags.
Germany's Frankia doesn't just name its new camper van "Yucon" to send visions of epic trips amidst colossal mountains and glacial turquoise dancing through your head. Naming the Sprinter van after Canada's sparsely populated northwestern territory also emphasizes the sheer feeling of size and space inside. With the Yucon, Frankia packs a roomy living area derived from its larger motorhomes within the compact driving footprint of a camper van. Clever space-saving features slide and swivel throughout this "microliner."
As capable as it is, the all-new Patriot X1-N camping trailer is not capable of transporting itself to camp. It still needs a tow partner, and Patriot figures not just any old truck or 4x4 will do. So it secures the camper's Cruisemaster hitch to the all-new Land Cruiser-based Desert Ops Supertourer. As delightfully retro as the limited edition X1-N Desert Ops, the new Supertourer offers just the right blend of torque, cushion, utility and aggressive, dingo-spooking jewelry to pull the heavy-duty trailer (or whatever you're towing) anywhere it wants to go.
Already the go-to for light, packable origami-inspired kayaks, Oru is now launching its lightest, most portable model to date. Sized down for the everyday commute, the new grab-and-go Inlet kayak rides to the water on your shoulder and sets up in under five minutes. It's the perfect watercraft for anyone who has limited space in a small apartment, tiny home or teardrop trailer but still wants to get out on the water regularly.
Straying from the hard-sided pop-out expansion modules we've seen on the likes of the Westfalia James Cook, RP Rebel Slide and Pinnacle Finetza, a new Toyota camper van from Australia's Bus 4x4 relies on a simpler solution: a drop-down expansion tent. The tent hangs off the tailgate, providing a breezier camping experience and pulling the bed farther back to open up the living area. A powerful 4x4 system borrowed from the Land Cruiser Prado completes a camper van that can travel to remote, rugged lands and live large once there.
A leading name in custom camper vans, Outside Van developed one of its latest customs with a different purpose in mind. The Next Gen van is an experimental prototype designed to optimize and centralize weight, using new strategies and experimental components. It doesn't skimp on features, though, keeping the lights and A/C on with a beefy 720Ah lithium battery pack wired to roof-mounted solar. If the van's design works out, it paves the way for a new generation of lighter, better-handling and more fuel-efficient camper vans.
At last year's Dusseldorf Caravan Salon, Citroën revealed the Jumper Biker Solution, a camper van built to haul motorcycles and sleep four people at night. A camper like that being displayed by an auto brand yelled "concept van," but camper vans are an important part of Citroën's business and the company immediately announced plans to sell the Biker Solution. Now it's expanding the Biker Solution line with a second model, an even roomier, more versatile hauling/camper van built to accommodate an ATV or go-kart on the road to an action-packed getaway.