Gallery: Rugged campervans (and campervan-like 4x4s) of Germany's Abenteuer & Allrad show
The Volkswagen badge may have dominated among the grilles of camper vans and truck campers at Abenteuer & Allrad 2018, but not every camper there was a "people's car." From expanding Sprinters, to pop-top Land Cruisers, there were plenty of camper vans - and 4x4s with neatly integrated, color-matched camper cabins - that wore badges from the likes of Mercedes-Benz, Toyota and Fiat. And this group included some of the most impressive small motorhomes of the show.
MAN TGE 3.180 "Max Hunt"
The fully fortified "Max Hunt" camper van is a custom build that's been out doing some serious #vanlife world touring. At Abenteuer & Allrad, it was being displayed by ICS Offroad, one of the specialists that helped make it a reality. It jumped out to us because it's the first MAN TGE camper van that we've seen in the wild and follows the two MAN-built concept camper vans from earlier this year. The TGE, which launched last year, is basically just a re-badged VW Crafter, but the MAN badge really adds a hint of toughness, seeing how that same badge appears on some of the largest, most powerful expedition motorhomes in the world (more than a couple of which were parked outside the show).
But the Max Hunt doesn't even need the extra hint of toughness because ... well, just look at it. It's an ultra-rugged 4x4 camper van with an off-road bumper, winch, snorkel, rock rails and plenty of auxiliary lighting. The van was all closed up at the show, so we don't know much about the interior, but we know it sleeps at least two inside the hardshell roof-top tent up high.
LeTech Lennson 3C
If you're wondering what we mean by campervan-like 4x4s, the LeTech Lennson 3C demonstrates nicely. This compact 4x4 camper rides on a modified G-Class chassis and carries a camper box that's color-matched to the cab, with an inside pass-through from cockpit to camper. So it provides a camping experience similar to a camper van, but from atop a more rugged, off-road-proven vehicle base.
The original Lennson 3C started life as a 2007 G 320 CDI before LeTech (Lennartz Technik) installed a set of its portal axles (the same ones used on the G500 4×4² and G63 6x6) and reached out to Orangework for a composite monocoque camper to drop on back. The package is also offered on newer G500 models.
According to the Orangework spec sheet for the original 2007 G 320 build, the Lennson 3C includes a kitchen with dual-burner, fridge and sink, a convertible seating group/bed, air heating, a hot water boiler, and a full electrical system with 280 watts of solar and a 160-Ah lithium-ion battery pack. There's even a small bathroom with toilet wedged inside.
LeTech has extended the wheelbase to 3,428 mm (135 in), and the 5,700-mm (224-in) Lennson 3C measures over a meter (3 feet) longer than a stock G-Class. But with its portal-raised ride height, lightweight composite construction and upgraded suspension, it's a light, compact integrated motorhome based on one of the most capable off-road 4x4s out there - sure to be a hoot.
Orangework showed a sandier-colored G500 Lennson 3C at its booth, with some slightly different specs (e.g. 320-Ah li-ion battery). We didn't get a chance to ask "how much?", but a 2017 review from Germany's Explorer Magazine puts price at a cool €365,000 (approx. US$424K).
Hünerkopf slide-out Mercedes Sprinter SLO
Hünerkopf specializes in fitting commercial and custom motorhomes with slide-out expansion modules and luxurious interiors. At Abenteuer & Allrad, it put the spotlight on its own small expanding motorhome, a Mercedes Sprinter van with a driver-side cabin pop-out that increases interior space, creating a sort of love seat alcove inside.
Hünerkopf makes use of the added space by creating an interior that's as interesting to behold as the lopsided exterior - a slim, midships washroom sits between the slide-out lounge and the rear bed, relying on a slide-away sink drawer and swivel faucet across the way in the living area cabinet for hand cleaning. Knotty wood furniture and trim abound, giving the cabin a warm, natural look throughout.
The Sprinter SLO on display wore a big, red window sticker of €129,350 (approx. US$150,000).
Those are a few of our favorites, but there are plenty of others that missed quite narrowly. See all the unique camper vans and 4x4 campers of Abenteuer & Allrad in the photo gallery.