Bath2Go pop-up outhouse bolts to a camper van to go on the go
Many of today's camper vans are small, nimble machines versatile enough to double as everyday drivers. That generally means that the "bathroom" is little more than a portable toilet tucked away inside a cubby – if that. The German-built Bath2Go is a unique solution for those who want a more complete indoor bathroom without going for a bigger van or cutting into their existing van's floor plan. It's an all-in-one portable bathroom that rides behind the bumper, providing a place to take care of business when it's needed, staying behind in the garage when it's not.
While a cassette toilet tucked below a bench or inside a closet is quite space-efficient, it isn't exactly the most elegant way to do your business (or endure someone else's business). Bath2Go thinks that van owners would be much better off with a dedicated bathroom, not inside the van, but mounted behind it.
The Bath2Go has some foreseeable issues of its own, but it does indeed look like a more private, user-friendly bathroom-on-the-move. Its interior looks much like the wet baths you might find inside larger motorhomes, albeit contained within in a box riding on the back of the van.
The 265-lb (120-kg) Bath2Go Comfort model includes a toilet with 15-L tank, folding sink and shower. A flip-up roof increases headroom to 6.4 feet (1.95 m) when the bathroom's in use and compacts down to keep the vehicle height below 6.6 feet (2 m) on the road, ensuring it can navigate parking decks. The system comes complete with a fresh water tank, waste water tank, 12 V pump and gas hot water heater for a comfortable showering experience. The bathroom also has an LED light and mirror.
Beyond being more private and user-friendly than a basic cassette toilet and exterior shower, the Bath2Go also offers a few advantages over interior motorhome bathrooms. Unlike a permanent interior bathroom, the Bath2Go can be left at home when not needed, keeping passenger and/or cargo space free. It'll purportedly take just three minutes or so to mount the necessary carrier to the vehicle and another five minutes to secure the bathroom unit atop the carrier.
The Bath2Go unit also pulls unsavory bathroom business out of the living cabin and puts it in an airier, more isolated location. That separation seems like it could also prove a big advantage in the event of breakage, preventing leaks and other problems inside the van cabin.
On the flip side, we're not sure that driving hundreds or thousands off miles with a crapper rattling around on the back of your van is all that attractive of a proposition. We imagine many would be inclined to trade indoor bathroom comfort for simplicity, opting for a basic exterior shower and removable cassette toilet, maybe with an accompanying tent for privacy.
The Bath2Go Comfort model costs €7,000 (approx. US$8,300), which includes the Cate carrier that supports it from below (you'll also need to have vehicle-specific mounting hardware installed for securing that Cate carrier). The Cate carrier is available for a variety of vans, including Fiat Ducato, Ford Transit, Mercedes Sprinter and Vito, and VW Transporter models.
A €5,995 ($7,100) Basic model is also in the works. It will use a simpler solar shower system without the hot water heater, pump or fresh/waste water tanks.
Those prices probably won't look too bad if you're shopping between large camper vans with bathrooms and smaller camper vans without, but they sure look expensive compared to a simple shower or portable toilet, or just answering the call behind a tree. So it's not the solution for everyone, but we guess Bath2Go's designers probably aren't prepared to start hand-building bumper-top johns for every camper van out there, anyway.