Honda goes kei camping with N-Truck and N-Camp concepts
At this year's Japan Camping Car Show in Tokyo, Honda has unveiled a two-piece concept that takes the kei car camping. Based on Honda's popular N-Box that was released in 2012 and following on from other N-Box-based concepts on display at the 2015 Tokyo Auto Salon, the N-Truck looks like a micro semi-articulated truck and couples with the N-Camp, a pint-sized caravan/trailer.
Kei cars are a class of vehicle that must conform to body and engine size restrictions to receive toll and tax breaks in certain major Japanese cities. Honda's N-Box is one of the most popular and this reworking of the platform threatens to take it outside its metropolitan comfort zone and appeal to those keen to hit the open road.
The camping and recreation market in Japan is in quite good health at the moment, with sales remaining steady despite the financial problems in Japan`s economy. Such market success is due to Japan`s aging population deciding go sightseeing and travel around the country after reaching retirement. Honda is hoping to extend this demand and interest to a younger generation with a concept that is aimed more towards the weekend-adventurer rather than the long-term explorer.
Honda has thought outside the (N-)box, turning it into a cab style micro pick-truck to which it has added a tall, windowed trailer. To keep the two-piece unit as short as possible, the front of the N-Camp trailer overhangs the rear of the N-Truck pick-up, giving it the silhouette of a semi-articulated truck. However, is is towed in the same way as a caravan trailer by way of a normal ball and hitch.
The interior of the N-Camp is arranged in a lounge style with large windows and comfortable chairs in which to sit back and admire the view. For sleeping, a series of flat boards are put in place that allow two people to sleep above the lounge area and also still admire the view. To give the upper deck more headroom, an end hinged raising roof is also added.
While Honda wasn't sharing much in the way of technical details, the spokesperson at the show was keen to let us know that the company has some serious ambitions of offering an off the shelf RV/trailer sometime in the future. Only time will tell if the end product looks anything like the N-Truck and N-Camp.
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I have seen photos of a Smart pickup that would be ideal as the tow vehicle for this cool little camper trailer.