New Crosscamp Flex MPV becomes latest ultra-versatile electric RV
Crosscamp launched three years ago as a dedicated city-friendly small camper van brand specializing in multipurpose vans built atop the Toyota Proace Verso and, later, the Opel Zafira Life. More and more, "city-friendly vehicle" is evolving to mean more than just "small, maneuverable and garage-friendly," also suggesting the likelihood of an efficient, low/zero-emissions powertrain. Crosscamp has answered that call with its first electric camper, an Opel Zafira-e Life that combines the classic, versatile Flex camper-MPV floor plan with Opel's all-electric 200-mile/charge powertrain.
Crosscamp has developed a prototype version of the Zafira-e Life-based Flex pop-up camper van for debut at this week's Düsseldorf Caravan Salon. We'll call it the e-Flex for short ... because it sounds much stronger than Flex-e.
Crosscamp's first and flagship camper van product, the Flex is designed as a versatile MPV that can readily bridge the gap between camping holidays and everyday city driving. It seats five as standard and can be optionally equipped with seven seats, providing plenty of room for the family. While the camper equipment is non-removable, it's compact enough as to not hinder use as a daily driver – perfect for city dwellers who have limited to no parking space for an extra vehicle.
The Zafira-e package looks indistinguishable from the ICE variant and includes a mini two-story layout with downstairs living area and pop-up upstairs bedroom. The Flex's lower area has a driver-side kitchen block, foldable two-seat bench/bed, swivel cab seats and a removable dining table that attaches to the interior wall of the kitchen. The van sleeps a total of four people on its two beds.
The e-Flex won't quite offer an all-electric camping experience, as it will retain the gas stove of the original Flex, but it will power its refrigerator box, lighting and mobile device charging via a 95-Ah auxiliary battery. The powertrain battery is the Zafira-e Life's 75-kWh lithium-ion unit sized for an estimated range of 200 miles (322 km, WLTP) – a little short of the 226-mile (363-km) Mercedes EQV that's been the popular midsize electric camper van base throughout 2022, but comparable to the VW Flowcamper Volt.
The e-Flex show van will be built atop the shorter 195-in (495-cm) Zafira-e Life M variant, which still offers the possibility of adding seats for seven. The van charges to 80 percent in roughly 48 minutes when using a 100-kW charger. The drive to and from camp promises to be a little less taxing on the driver thanks to Opel's onboard driver-assistance suite, which includes front collision alert, emergency braking, semi-adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist.
More than just a show car, the e-Flex is a preview of a production product that Crosscamp plans to launch in 2023. It also plans to offer its simpler Lite camper van package in an all-electric Zafira-e Life version. It will continue to offer diesel camper vans, as well.
We're heading out to the Düsseldorf Caravan Salon on Thursday and will take a closer look at the Crosscamp e-Flex when we arrive at the show.