Bürstner makes Ford van a flexible mini-camper multitool
More and more camper brands have realized that many customers don't want a big, ugly RV rotting away in their driveways for 3/4 of the year. They'd much rather have a small multipurpose vehicle to use every day of the year, including as a camper. Not long after similar product debuts like the Crosscamp Lite and VanTourer Urban, German motorhome manufacturer Bürstner launches its own take on the multipurpose mini-camper van. Its Ford Transit Custom rolls onto the road as a six-seat business van, two-person adventure gear-hauler, four-person camper van and open cargo van. It's a highly compelling rig for those who want a compact van that's much more than a camper.
Bürstner already has a small range of larger Sevel van-based camper vans, and the Copa represents its expansion into the sub-5-m multipurpose camper van market. The Copa can be personalized right off the order sheet, offering buyers the option of one or two beds and up to six seats, making it easy to spec as anything from a couple's van life escape up to an everyday family workhorse-cum-holiday getaway.
The 497-cm (196-in) Copa starts off with a standard pop-up sleeper roof with 190 x 110-cm (75 x 43-in) bed. The standard equipment package also brings along a driver-side kitchen with dual-burner stove/sink combo. A 41-L compressor cool box can be optionally dropped between the kitchen and the full-height storage cabinets in back.
Those who want the van for two-person adventures can leave the rear cabin empty for carrying bikes and surfboards, riding up front and sleeping in the roof bed. To sleep four, buyers can add the holiday package, which loads in a two-seat convertible bench that folds into a 187 x 97-cm (74 x 38-in) double bed. Whether or not they opt for the convertible bench, buyers can also add one or two individual chairs, for up to six seats all together.
Using the floor rail system, the standalone seats can be set up facing forward or in vis-à-vis configuration with the rear bench. In the latter set-up, the dining table can be secured to the kitchen block and used between the four rear seats. The driver and front passenger seat also swivel around, offering four-person dining when the middle seats are not installed.
Unlike in the aforementioned VanTourer Urban or the Pössl Vanster, the Copa kitchen is hard-mounted and does not remove for outdoor use or to free up extra space inside the van. But the floor rails keep the seating configuration flexible enough to easily transform from six-person soccer-practice shuttling, to family-of-four camping, to cargo van-style tool and material hauling.
Other standard Copa camper equipment includes a 95-Ah leisure battery, 50-L fresh water tank, 35-L waste water tank, LED lighting, and outdoor shower hookup just inside the tailgate. A diesel auxiliary camping heater is available optionally. The base Ford Transit Custom comes powered by a 128-hp 2.0-liter EcoBlue engine and includes standard features like park pilot, hill start assist and active brake assist. A 182-hp engine is available as an optional upgrade.
Bürstner highlighted the Copa at CMT Digital in January and plans to roll the model out in Germany and France this spring for a base price of €39,990 (approx. US$48,275), including VAT. The four-sleeper, six-seater variant starts at €50,260 ($60,675) before other options. A wider European launch will follow in 2022. In the United States, meanwhile ... well, we'll just continue looking on in envy at the army of affordable, super-versatile camper-MPVs that keep rolling off production lines in Europe.