Bruder EXP-7 is a Goldilocks camper for Aussie off-road dominance
Bruder makes some of the most rugged-but-luxurious off-road camper trailers in the world, and despite what might seem to outsiders as prohibitively expensive pricing, the company shows no signs at all of slowing down. In late 2021, it topped its lineup with an all-new flagship called the EXP-8, and now it's squeezed the all-new EXP-7 just below the 8 and above its original staple, the EXP-6.
The EXP-7 actually offers slightly more size and sleeping capacity than the EXP-8, but the new model's real attraction is in marrying some of the best features of both the 8 and 6 into a comfortable go-anywhere, anytime indoor/outdoor base camp. It may just be Bruder's most attractive all-around trailer yet.
At 23 feet (7 m), the new EXP-7 is about half a foot (15 cm) longer than the EXP-8 in total length and a full foot (30 cm) longer than the EXP-6. But the EXP-8 isn't merely a flagship because of its size – it also packs Bruder's most focused four-season performance package, meant to travel pole to pole with stops at the hottest desert sands between. Specifically, Bruder's "true four-season 21st century global exploration platform" was engineered for temperatures ranging between -22 °F (-30 °C) and 140 °F (60 °C) and tested at altitudes above 10,000 feet (3,048 m).
By contrast, the all-new EXP-7 is designed for more down-to-earth climatic conditions, much like the Bruder trailers that preceded the EXP-8. That's not to say it isn't capable of handling some extreme weather, but it's not as purpose-built for the task as the 8.
The EXP-7 still combines Bruder's ultra-rugged airtight square-tube chassis and 60-mm marine-grade closed-cell composite body, both specially engineered to work together in reducing vibrations and handling whatever the trail can throw at them. The company's patented air suspension system puts two mono-tube remote-canister shocks at each of the four wheels, boosting travel and leveling capabilities.
Where the EXP-7 really separates from the EXP-8 is in carrying signature EXP-6 features upmarket. Like the 6, the EXP-7 is available in both fixed roof (GT) and pop-top (PT) styles. The electrically actuated pop-top is designed to lower the towing and storage height of the trailer, while the hard-roof GT is recommended for those looking for the highest level of insulation and hard-wall protection. The PT travels at a height of 7.7 feet (2.4 m) with the top closed and suspension at its lowest, while the GT stands a hair under 8.5 feet (2.6 m) at its lowest.
Since the EXP-7 isn't as focused on extreme weather as the EXP-8, it takes cooking back outside, offering an indoor/outdoor cooking setup much like the one on the EXP-6. The central pantry hatch includes outdoor-access food storage, along with access to the kitchen counter top, portable dual-burner induction cooktop and sink. Whether indoors or outdoors, the chef has arm's reach access to cold storage thanks to a slide-out 57-L outdoor fridge/freezer next to the pantry and a 136-L door fridge/freezer inside.
The EXP-7 carries over the EXP-8's left- and right-side entry doors, in contrast to the EXP-6 and its tailgate hatch. This could prove particularly useful when back into a tight camping spot that makes it difficult to open a rear hatch and/or impedes access to one of the sides.
Inside, the new EXP-7 PT sleeps up to six people, and the GT sleeps up to four. Both feature a proper 60 x 80-in (153 x 203-cm) queen-size bed, along with sofa lounges amidships. The EXP-7 series also includes a bathroom with hot/cold shower, sink, vanity and composting toilet. A hot/cold outdoor shower is also standard, and the 200-L fresh tank provides plenty of onboard water capacity.
The EXP-7's 'tweener electrical system has half the battery capacity of the power-hungry extreme-weather EXP-8, speccing in with a still-large 10.8-kWh lithium battery bank. That battery works with a 3,000-W inverter, 1,245-W roof-mounted solar array, AC and DC chargers, full touchscreen power management system, and loads of AC, 12-V and USB outlets.
Other EXP-7 specs of interest include triple-filtered dust-reduction pressurization, a 12V HD smart TV inside, and a diesel hydronic heating and hot water system.
Bruder introduced the EXP-7 this month, and the EXP-7 PT starts at a cool US$160,250, or AU$258,500 after GST. The GT starts at US$165,500, or AU$267,850 with GST. Available add-ons include an exterior tent for the outdoor shower, a 4,500-lb (2,040-kg) rear winch, a sound system, a Starlink internet prep package, a front-loading washing machine, and extra fresh water and battery capacity.