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Old 05-22-2015, 03:41 PM   #1
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European "caravans"

So can anyone explain why European caravans are not available in the US? I have been searching for a travel trailer with front couches and lots of windows, which pretty much all European caravan manufactures seem to have, but I cannot find something similar here in the US.

I am looking for something similar to the 554 listed in the url.

Swift Challenger Sport Caravan Layouts and Tech :: Swift Group

I don't understand why I cannot anything similar here in the US.

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Old 05-22-2015, 03:52 PM   #2
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Notice no slide-outs....There are few American RV manufactures that do take some styling que's from the overseas caravans. Notice the RV doors are on the opposite side.

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Old 05-22-2015, 03:56 PM   #3
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Off hand I would think there are a host of hoops to jump through over things like electrical, plumbing and maybe running gear. Probably not enough units would be wanted to go through the hassle of dealing with making them conform to US standards. No idea why the US does not do those layouts. Perhaps you can find a custom builder.
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Old 05-22-2015, 04:03 PM   #4
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They are a little pricey when you do the Pound to dollar conversion. Then they would have to be converted to US/CDN standards, expensive investment for a company, plus the shipping cost would be added to that. I don't see a lot of profit in that.
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Old 05-22-2015, 04:11 PM   #5
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Manufacturers make what they THINK the buyers want.. Folks in the US have different standards than say England.

Get the photos and floor plans.. Go to the body builders and ask.. CAN YOU MAKE IT..
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Old 05-22-2015, 04:43 PM   #6
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Good luck with your situation.
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Old 05-24-2015, 02:02 PM   #7
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Thank for the replies everyone. Any recommendations for someone that could possibly build something like this?
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Old 05-24-2015, 08:46 PM   #8
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I don't know why those floor plans have gone out of style, but I haven't seen one in years. I do have two suggestions though. One is to look at a vintage unit either redone or in very good shape. The other is to look at a CreekSide 20FQ. It may be a bit too long for you at 20' but it is the floor plan you are looking at only in reverse. We love ours.
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Old 05-25-2015, 03:19 PM   #9
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European campers have more than just code changes required to be popular with US buyers. These guys compared US to European Airstream trailers:

The entire way the company expects the trailers to be used in Europe is very different from how they expect they are used in the US. For example, European trailers will probably have cartridge toilets, far less onboard water storage (including grey water holding), suspension height set for driving on paved roads only, and very importantly: narrower width due to European road sizes. While I expect many in North America would see these as negatives, they're not necessarily negatives, they just imply a different style of use.

I doubt many in the US or Canada would be very satisfied with a European RV without major retrofitting. Thus there's little to no market overlap.
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Old 05-26-2015, 09:48 AM   #10
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I guess I should have worded my post better - Why can't I find a camper with a layout with a front lounge area similar to the euro caravans with the large windows and skylight? I did not intend to get into the "converting to U.S. use" rabbit hole regarding water holding, width, even though the one's I have been looking at are 8' wide, suspension, etc.

It is just myself and my wife, so when we are in the camper, it is usually raining out, or at night. To me, the parallel couch/lounge area is much more inviting where I could see us reading/relaxing, one on each side, where most "American" campers would have a dinette or a single couch, both of which do not provide much of a lounging area. I have been toying with the idea of remodeling an older camper, but that would be a lot of work.

At about 17sec. in this video, you can see what I am talking about.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:48 PM   #11
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I think the Oliver trailers are similar to the euro style.
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Old 05-26-2015, 11:33 PM   #12
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Hmmm, I should take pics of our trailer. It does have the dinette at the front, but it is built as two parallel couches (you could always throw away the table and then it is permanent couches, LOL!) same position as the video. One is twice as long as the other giving you the lounge space. Windows came pre-installed for all seat walls. If you bought a bunkhouse model, you'd have the beds you'd probably want, too (I've seen them with front dinettes/sofas).

It doesn't have the front window or skylight, but you can add both aftermarket (any dealer would be happy to put them in.

Or am I missing something entirely? Uncomfy dinettes sofas are an easy fix if you're handy, or cheap enough to get carpenter to do the work on.

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