A Welsh company has unveiled an amazing, extendable pod that slides out from the back of a VW Transporter. Cardiff-based DoubleBack says its creation represents the first true innovation in the camper market since the advent of the elevating roof over thirty years ago.
The pod slides electrically from the back of the Transporter to a length of around two metres, stabilised by two extendable, self-levelling legs.
And because it's engineered with the original tailgate, which remains fully functional, it sits flush at the rear of the Transporter when not in use.
Folding out in 45 seconds, it extends the vehicle to 25ft in total, and can support up to 600kg, which is about 94st. So if you're thinking about buying one as a mobile party van, you'll get most of the cast of Geordie Shore in there.
The company estimates that it takes up 15-20% of the van's interior space when stowed, but that when extended "you're basically getting an extra room," DoubleBack's Ed Brooks told Autoblog.
Conceived and designed by British engineer Craig McCormack, the pod took four years to develop and complete, but is ready for sale now.
However, it doesn't come cheap: the price of a DoubleBack Transporter is £54,995, which is £25,000 or so more than the standard VW T5 2.0 TDI LWB van it's based on.
But for that, buyers are getting an overhaul that includes the pod, which can be used as a double bed, a pop-up canopy, an integrated kitchen unit and a passenger setup that comprises either two captain's chairs or a bench for three occupants in total.
And, says DoubleBack, it's built using aircraft grade materials and put together by a world class motorsport company, using over 10,000 parts. Order one and it'll take up to five months to build, plus whatever time it takes VW to supply the Transporter.
The DoubleBack isn't the first van ever to get an extendable, sliding rear section - Nissan showcased the idea with the NV200 concept back in 2007. But it is, we believe, the first to make production.
Having launched the product in the UK, DoubleBack is now looking to expand the reach of its unique Transporter overseas, and is asking established manufacturing and distribution companies to get in touch.
Here's a video of it doing its thing: