Expandable teardrop camper stretches into panoramic multi-room cabin
One of the more rugged camper trailers we've seen muscling its way through Europe is also one of the world's roomiest teardrop trailers. The new Campravan Raptor XC from Turkish builder Hunter Nature Caravan features a long slide-out where one would expect to find a lift-up tailgate galley. The expansion adds an entire room, allowing the small off-roader to accommodate a family with a master bedroom, dining area, indoor kitchen and wet bathroom. In the end, the Raptor XC combines a layout like a larger caravan with the towing footprint of a teardrop.
Turkey seems to be becoming a new hotspot for European-market camper production. Builders from the Eurasian nation don't necessarily produce the prettiest, most refined models, and some of their vehicles are rather derivative of existing products, but with a penchant for strong lines, sharp angles and riveted metal, Turkish companies are working hard to fulfill the demand for more rugged, go-anywhere RVs.
It was with that growing demand in mind that Hunter Nature spun off from a machinery manufacturing interest and started building caravans in 2019. The new brand has focused its attention on filling the void of hardwearing off-road camper products built in or near Europe, relying on the type of construction materials common in Australian and US off-road camper builds: steel chassis, independent suspension and aluminum-sandwich body construction, as examples. After releasing several small all-terrain trailers with more traditional body styles, it added the clever Raptor XC expander this year.
The Raptor XC is built to loyally follow a Land Rover Defender or Toyota Land Cruiser over the river and through the woods to a quiet, remote campsite, whether for a quick, single-night stay during a long expedition or for a full weekend or weeklong camping trip. It features a sandwich of exterior and interior aluminum walls around XPS insulation and rides atop BFGoodrich all-terrain tire-shod alloy wheels cushioned by an independent suspension system.
The Raptor XC's rear slide-out expansion isn't quite as dramatic as something from French brands like Beauer or Tipoon, but it does remind us of the now-defunct Australian Gidget teardrop trailer. It pulls out farther, however, and creates a fully insulated indoor space in which campers can retire for the entire evening or even days at a time, no need to step outside for cooking, dining or bathroom breaks. The extension is manually operated as standard but can be equipped with a remote-controlled motor system. It stretches the trailer body from 15.7 to 22.6 feet (4.8 to 6.9 m).
Hunter Nature's slide-out hosts a master bedroom that serves as a private, dedicated space with double bed, overhead shelves, and an absolute panorama created by dual skylights and long side windows. A doorway separates the bedroom from the main cabin, where an L-shaped dining lounge sits behind the kitchenette. The scissor-lifted dining table drops down at night to create a 35 x 75-in (90 x 190-cm) single bed for a third camper. The kitchen comes stocked with a dual-burner gas stove and sink below a glass lid, 75-L fridge and L-shaped stainless steel counter.
Directly next to the kitchen, Hunter Nature is able to squeeze in a private wet bath complete with solid door, a rarity in a teardrop trailer. It houses a toilet, sink and shower.
The main cabin benefits from the same type of bright, open window array as the bedroom, two full-length skylights joining a curved front kitchen window and long side windows in eliminating the divide between trailer interior and great outdoors. For better or worse, the bathroom is included in the window-heavy design, with its own slice of side window and a dedicated curved front window — blinds appear a mandatory add-on for campers with even a small amount of modesty.
The Raptor XC comes powered by a 120-Ah gel battery wired into a 160-W solar panel. A touchscreen panel provides system information and control of various onboard components. The trailer carries fresh water in a 120-L stainless steel tank and waste water in a 100-L aluminum tank. A Truma Combi heater provides both hot water and cabin heat.
The Raptor XC appears capable of providing a very nice mix of off-road toughness and maneuverability and at-camp space and comfort, but that combo doesn't come without a price. An eBay listing puts the expanding trailer at €39,000 (approx. US$43,900) in Germany, which, when converted to AU$61,800, doesn't look so bad in comparison to high-end Australian small off-road trailers like the Offline Domino or Sherpa BRS, but is well more expensive than other European off-road tear and squaredrops we've seen lately, including the Kuckoo Bruno and Hero Camper.
Watch a Porsche-towed Campravan Raptor XC make camp out of dusty, desolate nothingness in the three-minute intro video below.
Source: Hunter Nature