2009 - Inside-out Camper

P1030727

INSIDEOUTBACK’s Renault Koleos was the first of the new generation of compact SUV campers, which opens out from a central core, allowing you to live around it protected from sun and rain. 

Over 150,000km and ten years it proved that smaller vehicles can do the Big Trips really well - in fact better than the bigger vehicles. Rarely is strenuous off-road ability needed in travelling Oz, which shocks some people, who assume a three ton 4x4 with massive bull bar and high lift suspension is the first requirement. 

Mostly, you just need rugged construction and supple suspension, and ground clearance of 180~200mm. 4WD itself is infrequently used, unless you choose to do a lot of coastal or beach driving. Simpson Desert or Canning Stock Route trips are the current exceptions to this rule - but watch this space, anything is possible!

The Koleos was reviewed by remote travel guru Collyn Rivers in The Wanderer (the Campervan & Motorhome Club of Australia's magazine), and has been featured on various websites. 

The Renault was preferred over its mechanically identical cousin the Nissan X-Trail because of its slippery aerodynamics, but this comes at the cost of interior volume. Because this particular vehicle was set up for a couple, the lower internal volume was not a problem. Other similar vehicles that would be equally successful, include the X-Trail, Hyundai IX35, Forrester Diesel or any other small SUV with good ground clearance and economy. The Skoda Yeti is slightly smaller again, and even more economical, and is a likely candidate for our next design exercise.

ABOVE LEFT: EN ROUTE DOWN THE MIDDLE OF WA. CENTRE: FLAT TYRE EN ROUTE TO COOK ON THE TRANS-AUSTRALIAN RAILWAY, NULLABOR, THE RIGHT HAND SIDE ROOF BOX OPENS TO REVEAL SPARE WHEEL, AIRBAG JACK, & SNATCH-UM STRAP. RIGHT: EN ROUTE TO A FLOODED LAKE EYRE, NEAR MARREE, JULY 2010.

The Koleos has an integrated electrical system which powers the fridge, water pump and domestic lighting - all of which are integrated into the vehicle. This means when the awning is folded out, the waterproof LED lightstrips are all in place, just flick the switch. The auxilliary electrical system centres around a 100AH AGM deep-cycle battery and 128W thin film solar panels. The whole system is flawlessly managed by a Redarc BMS1215 battery management system, designed and made in Adelaide.

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DESIGN COPYRIGHT INSIDEOUTBACK/ENVIROTECTURE

The Koleos will be sold in late 2012. Contact us if you would like to be notified.

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