This Citröen Type H Wildcamp Is the Camper Van of My Dreams

Cream colored van with equipment on top


Oh wait, don't look too closely, it's not a real type H. But it's a really nice camper!

When I last wrote about a Ford Transit camper van, commenters complained, “I'm not buying the Treehugger greenwashing, however hard you try. How is it relevant to this site? A diesel camper? What about the Nissan EV campervan?”

Why Camper Vans are Greener

detail of headlight

So before I continue drooling over this Citröen Type H Wildcamp camper van of my dreams, I will point out that (a) the Nissan has very limited range; (b) I have come to think that this makes a whole lot more sense than owning a tiny house and the car needed to get it to whatever godforsaken place the tiny house owners have found to hide it. It probably takes a whole lot less energy to run than a conventional house and car and as one commenter noted, “NO MORE CONSUMERISM! You can only put so much stuff in a car or van"; (c) It seems like a whole lot of fun and you get to see the world in your own moving home.

Exterior Design

Side view of white camper van

© Citroen

So, back to the Citröen, which has this fabulous retro look of a classic Type H Van, built between 1947 and 1981. According to Wikipedia,

The distinctive corrugated body work used throughout the period of production was inspired by German Junkers (Aircraft) starting from the First World War until the 1930s, the three engined Junkers Ju 52 being the last to use this construction. Henry Ford also adopted this construction for the Ford Tri-Motor passenger aircraft. The ribs added strength without adding weight, and required only simple, low cost press tools.
Diagram of van conversion kit
Caselani Automobili

Alas, in this camper van it is all fake, added on top of a modern Citroen, adding weight and air resistance, so this is not exactly TreeHugger correct.

Interior Design

Kitchen interior showing stove, countertop, and seat

Inside, it is one of the more clever conversions I have seen. It is not a big van; it does not have an ugly top like the Ford Transit did, but it does have a full bathroom with shower, enclosed by sliding screens. You are standing on the shower floor while you are at the kitchen sink, but at least the space is all serving multiple functions.

Possl plan of unit

The Interior is actually a Pössl Roadcamp R – City Speedster with Central Washroom, designed to go in short, easy-to-drive vans. It is a very modern, clever interior in a fake old van; C.C. Weiss of New Atlas, which showed this earlier, says, “This new concept camper van looks vintage but rides modern, complete with everything you need to live away from civilization.”

View of pull-out dining table in front of camper seats

I admit this makes no sense, wrecking the aerodynamics with a 20,000 Euro conversion kit. Perhaps I should find an old Model H, do an electric conversion, and do some home-cooked version of the interior in sustainably harvested bamboo plywood. But the more I look at these camper vans, the more I think that their designers really have small space living figured out down to the last nut and bolt, and at least these camper vans have legal places to park. There is a lot a TreeHugger can learn from these.

Interior with bed set up

But it is not greenwashing; it is an alternative way of living in smaller spaces, using fewer resources than you would with a house and a car. And you get to see something instead of your TV. I could not figure out where you can buy it or how much it costs, but Weiss of New Atlas concludes:

While Citroën refers to the WildCamp as a concept, interested and determined buyers will be able to recreate the package. As listed in Citroën's announcement, the Jumpy L2H2 with Pössl Roadcamp R camper van kit starts at €41,597 (approx. US$47,450), and the Caselani Type H body kit tacks on another €27,132 ($30,950). Not the cheapest "old van" camper conversion, but it certainly does provide a unique mix of retro style and modern camper van design.

More at Citroen, in German.