Space, it’s the biggest priority whether you’re in a caravan, a van or a motorhome; we’re all looking for ways it can be optimized, expanded and put to its best use, yet somehow there’s never enough of it. So what about a camping trailer that almost doubles its original size to create a modern, fully functional indoor/outdoor living area, and can be towed behind any car just like a normal caravan? This is exactly what New Zealand-based company W2 have been designing over the past six years, and it’s finally almost ready to go into production.
The Romotow is a totally unique design, inspired by the functionality of the Swiss Army Knife, blended with the kind of contemporary design flair you will only get from a crack team of architects. It’s lightweight enough to be towed, then once parked its floor area can be increased by 70% up to a whopping 290 sq. ft by pivoting the exterior shell on a point to create a T-shaped layout with a sheltered exterior deck.
But something this innovative and complex can’t just be created overnight; the Romotow has been six years in the making, and it’s got another two to wait before production is expected. But using technology like automated rotation at the press of a button, gyro-assisted self-leveling pads and struts, and a balancing system to prevent the trailer from falling over, it’s no wonder the development phase has taken this long. It’s even got pneumatic shock absorbers, power-assisted braking, and a rear camera installed.
The exterior is designed to be aerodynamic and lightweight to reduce the fuel consumption of the towing vehicle. By creating a unique curved body out of composite materials supported by a lightweight carbon fiber chassis, the overall weight of the trailer is reduced to a quarter of what it would weigh made of steel. Its sleek curves evoke both retro and contemporary vibes at the same time, although its spindly legs are somewhat reminiscent of a vintage television set, and it’s impossible to ignore its similarities with a USB flash drive.
The architectural elements of the design are immediately obvious in the large circular windows which dominate the front and rear of the capsule, and the even larger curved bay window which engulfs one side. The glossy white paneling offsets the warm tones of the synthetic teak decking, which carries on throughout the interior.
Within this 30ft long and 8.5ft wide space, you’ll find more in common with a luxury cabin than a caravan, as it contains a double bedroom, a bathroom, a kitchen and a lounge/diner which converts into an extra double bed. But if you’re planning on hosting a party, the outside deck can also be transformed into additional sleeping space for four more, using clip-in fabric screens.
There is little information currently about the exact contents of the Romotow, but it will feature a contemporary design with “stylish fixtures” across the kitchen and bathroom. In the kitchen of the prototype model you’ll find a sink with tap, microwave, diesel cooker, storage and a cozy rounded seating area, and in the bedroom a double bed with bedside lighting and a leather headboard, next to a small central bathroom containing a toilet.
We do know that the Romotow will also feature a state-of-the-art sound system, a foldaway electric outdoor barbecue and a roll-out sun awning, perfect for entertaining. The U-shaped section of the roof will house 1kW solar panels to charge a 400Ah battery, and diesel heating will be included. Optionally you’ll be able to add in a windbreak, sliding doors and stylish easy-clean furniture, but W2 is keeping the rest of their ideas under wraps for now.
But now for the catch; the price to pay for such innovation and modernity and the ultimate say in glamping is an eye-watering $350,000, although you do get a choice of three different designs in different lengths- when it eventually goes into production in 2020.
W2 has called the Romotow “the next frontier in mobile living” and the “first dramatic reinvention [of the caravan] since the 1960’s”, and while they haven’t exactly reinvented the wheel, it’s pretty safe to say there’s nothing quite like this out on the market right now.
Source and images: Romotow