MINI unveils its 3 latest camping concepts
July 19, 2013
MINI has chosen the height of the British summer to unveil its new motoring-cum-camping concepts aimed at music festival goers and outdoor types in need of what the company euphemistically describes as "overnight solutions." The three products are the Clubvan Camper, the Cowley and the Countryman ALL4 Camp; a tiny camper van, a compact caravan and a rooftop tent respectively. Let's have a look, then.
MINI Clubvan Camper
Described by the company as "arguably the world's smallest luxury camper van," the Clubvan Camper is a Clubvan adapted to provide sleeping for one at the expense of all seats other than the driver's. When bedding down for the night, the drive occupies a berth that extends front to back on the passenger side of the vehicle.
The space behind the driver's seat has been filled by a kitchenette which extends out of the Clubvan Camper's pair of rear doors, and which includes a propane stove and a chest fridge. A moonroof can be opened for ventilation (or to look at the moon, obviously).
An auxiliary heater, a small flatscreen TV and, notably, a handheld shower designed to be used outside of the vehicle round out the home comforts included.
What at first looks like a generous storage trailer, the MINI Cowley concept is in fact's MINI's suitably compact take on the traditional towing caravan.
Named after the company's Oxfordshire factory, the Cowley packs in little more than two sleeping berths into its interior, though an entertainment system complete with TV, DVD player and audio equipment are on hand if you can't think of anything to do.
Cunningly, MINI has opted to shift the kitchen to a compartment on the outside. This packs in a dual-burner gas stove, a sink with water tank and pump, and a refrigerator. The door opens upwards, providing a modicum of shelter.
The whole thing weighs in at under 300 kg (660 lb), and is just 12 cm (4.7 in) wider than a MINI Clubman. Don't look now, but MINI might just have made the caravan sexy.
MINI Countryman ALL4 Camp
Though pictured above a Countryman ALL4, the Camp is designed to be mounted on more or less any current MINI or MINI Clubman. It's a rooftop sleeping compartment designed to be on hand when sleeping quarters are needed at the drop of a hat, which simply unfolds upwards out of its slim storage box, and folds down again (nice and quickly, MINI says) in the morning.
Though perhaps the least fun of the three concepts, it might just be the most useful.
Alas MINI says that for now, it has no plans to put these concepts on the market. For now, then, let us sit upon the ground and tell sad stories of the dearth of things.
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