The Ecco: Flipping Amazing RV of the Future

Life in the traditional camper van has always been a cramped affair.

The Ecco is set to revolutionise the humble camper van with space-age design that includes collapsible walls and a flip-top upper deck. (Credit: swns.com)

But design experts in Switzerland want to bring that experience to an end with a cutting edge concept—a futuristic Swiss camper van that doubles in size by flipping open “like a Swiss Army knife.”

Since space is the main theme, in design and concept, passengers enter the 15-foot-long electric vehicle from the rear through a huge stairway that folds into the ceiling. The space is then transformed with a flip-out top deck, expandable walls, and fold-down seats for extra room.

Called the Ecco, it is a very green vehicle, topped with a solar-paneled roof that charges its battery and produces zero emissions. An eight-hour charge supposedly lasts a full day, providing enough juice to reach highway-driving speeds. According to published reports the Ecco is able to reach a top speed of 90 mph.

The eco-friendly camper van can sleep a family of five and boasts a kitchen, bathroom, and lounge area.

Flipping futuristic: The Ecco doubles in size when it is unfurled and motorists can even darken the windows for privacy when the vehicle is stationary. (Credit: swns.com)

Both the driver and passenger have a circular window built into the large doors which open vertically towards the sky, while a large windscreen gives travelers a panoramic view of the road.

Swiss designer company NAU said the Ecco was inspired by the Volkswagen camper van and the Airstream. The result is vastly improved interior volume, wonderful sight-lines for all passengers, and less wind resistance to boot. It hopes the futuristic vehicle will prove as iconic as the VW camper van.

While a bit wider than its Volkswagen predecessor, the Ecco’s form is more aerodynamic, and the vehicle rides closer to the ground.

“We want to bring the freedom of the road back to generations of the future,” a NAU spokesperson said.

The Swiss company NAU promises to put the Ecco on sale in 2014, but hasn’t suggested a price.

Is this three-wheeled, teardrop-shaped concept RV legit? Will the Ecco ever exist in real-life?

What do you think?

Details

NAU

Functions: 1-2, Van opens; 3, electric power hook-up; 4, air intake; 5, windscreen; 6, solar power panel; 6-7 Softtop opening roof; 8, fold out stairs. (Credit: arch.nau.coop)

NAU is about making spaces—spaces that tell a story.

NAU is a multidisciplinary collective of designers. They are architects, art directors, interactive designers, visual effect artists, and film makers.

Address: Riedtlistrasse 27, 8006 Zurich, Switzerland

Phone: +41 44 271 0680

Website: arch.nau.coop

Related

Worth Pondering…

All things are possible until they are proved impossible—and even the impossible may only be so, as of now.

—Pearl S. Buck

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