Will there be electric motorhomes?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Will there be electric motorhomes? We will discuss the challenges of making electric motorhomes and review the prices of such a “luxury”. 

Will there be electric motorhomes?

Yes, electric motorhomes will definitely be part of our future, although for this there must be important adjustments in the regulations and new advances in the storage capacity of batteries.

Electric motorhomes are, like passenger cars and other vehicles with two, four or more wheels, the future in the short and medium term. Electricity is reaching the car at full throttle. 

However, in the field of motorhomes, nothing has been decided yet. We only have reserved studies of some manufacturers and some camper and motorhomes for sale already. Other prototypes include solar energy to recharge the accumulators that allow us to move, but with little practical results.

Why is it challenging to make an electric motorhome?

Motorhomes are a very special product. They have a very limited weight, or rather just for the needs, and it seems that they will not be subject for the moment to that extension that allows them to drive vehicles of up to 4,500 kg (9,920 lbs) with the B license as long as they are pure electric. Expansion is essential for electric motorhomes, since new vehicles will gain weight yes or yes as soon as all the elements are adapted to electrify them.

It is worth mentioning, for example, that within conventional vehicles, cars or SUVs, to reach autonomies of 400 km (250 miles)  or more in a medium category, currently the weight increases by about 450 kg (992 lbs). 

An electric motorhome, due to the specific needs, should even exceed these figures, since its autonomy should be increased in relation to the vehicles that serve as its base. Fiat has presented an electric Ducato with a range of travels with a charge of 120 to 360 km (75 to 223 miles), depending on the batteries you use, which is clearly insufficient for our vehicles.

Power is no problem. The electric Ducatos now come with 122 hp, but replacing these electric motors with more powerful ones surely has already been planned. There are other electrified models from Ford, Man and Fiat’s partners with the Ducato, Citroën Jumper and Peugeot Boxer, but all these electric commercial models are specially designed for short delivery trips in cities, due to the need to offer a level of the load that can transport acceptable.

The industry is doing research in the field of batteries, not only because of their physical components but also because of their density. The studies advance significant reductions in size, with a no less significant increase in density, that is, more capacity to store energy, but with much less size and weight.

How much would an electric motorhome cost?

However, this new technology, which includes the use of innovative materials, will undoubtedly also bring a considerable increase in the price, compared to that of a vehicle powered by a diesel heat engine, which for electric motorhomes can be insurmountable.

Just comment that the electric Ducato Van, with 360 km (223 miles) of autonomy and the aforementioned 122 HP of power, has a price of 58,810 dollars. If we add to this the approximately $35,000 minimum that a transformation requires, without excessive luxury or first-rate materials, even when motorhome manufacturers get the platforms at the best price, we can have a rough idea of ​​how far the prices can go.

For example, the one that we consider to be the only one sold until today, the Iridium EV, has a price of 169,999 dollars, out of the reach of most of those interested in buying a motorhome, in addition to not covering many of our needs. In the field of Camper, the change will be much easier, although the problems of autonomy continue to penalize their sale.

Everything is in the air right now. Electrification is on track and will suit all vehicles. Heavy transport is thinking of hydrogen, or even specific lanes to charge the batteries as we circulate. The cars are already quite clear where they are oriented. Short-haul transportation as well.

However, our beloved motorhomes are still in limbo from which it is risky to say where they are going to leave. There are numerous studies. Hybrid and plug-in hybrids are sure to be launched, but they are not the long-term solution.

Some manufacturers announce new products, but knowing that their integration into the market is very complicated due to these three main aspects that we mention in order: price, weight and autonomy. 

We have time. Until 2040, vehicles with engines that emit CO2 are not allowed to be produced and marketed. Only from 2050 is this park expected to have disappeared. In those moments, it is sure that motorhomes have been moving with other energy sources for many years. Electric, hydrogen …

Iridium E Mobil, announces 250 miles of autonomy

The German firm WOF GmbH, based in Baden-Württemberg, presented a 100% electric motorhome at the CMT tourism fair in Stuttgart back in 2019, but since then they have continued their development and at the next Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf, they will show their latest evolution.

This Iridium motorhome announces an autonomy improvement of 30% compared to the one presented in Stuttgart since it now promises to reach 400 kilometres (250 miles) with each load. 

The company ElektroFahrzeuge Stuttgart (EFA-S), in charge of the electric propulsion system and the batteries of this Iridium, has modified the lithium-ferro phosphate battery (LiFePO4), which goes from 106 kWh to 108 kWh, but above all thanks to changes In its technology, it offers an additional 100 kilometres (62 miles) of autonomy compared to the previous battery, which advertised 300 kilometres (186 miles).

The soul of the Iridium EV, based on the WOF BELA P69 model and built by the Swiss firm Maurer Fahrzeugbau, is a synchronous electric motor with a power of 150 kW or 204 hp and a maximum torque of 730 Nm. At the moment the manufacturer has not offered many more technical details, since the information is reserved for the debut of the model at the Düsseldorf fair.

The electrical system integrates an on-board charger that allows recharging at up to 22 kW of power, as well as rapid CCS recharging that will initially be available with a maximum of 50 kW, although the company intends to reach up to 100 kW in the future.

Will diesel motorhomes be banned?

Yes, diesel motorhomes will be banned from 2030 onwards. RV and caravan manufacturers will have until 2050 to switch from diesel to zero-emission motorhomes. 

The intention of this initiative is that in 2050 no vehicle that emits CO2 will circulate, hence the registration ban from 2040. This is due to the pact sealed in 2015 at the Paris summit against climate change, to prevent the temperature rise on the planet exceeding two degrees Celsius.

The Government has released the news with a reasonable period in advance so that the automotive sector can adapt to this new situation without causing large losses, neither employment nor financial. 

To facilitate this law, short-term measures have been promoted, such as the installation of charging points for electric vehicles at gas stations. The Government will not prohibit the circulation of combustion vehicles on that date, but the municipalities and autonomous communities will be able to do so.

But all these new laws should not worry us since the first electric caravans and motorhomes are already beginning to be developed, the solution for electric car drivers who do not want to give up travelling in a motorhome.

The bottom line

Truth to be told, there is currently no market for electric motorhomes, apart from some camper vans (which are not motorhomes as such), as is the case with the Nissan e-NV200 that the Japanese brand markets are already camperized. 

Despite the obvious appeal of fuel cell vehicles, we are still a long way from being able to acquire and use one of them in the same conditions as a combustion vehicle. Its development is in the hands of automotive companies interested in its commercialization, but at least, as far as the sector is concerned, it offers a real alternative to how our vehicles could be in the not too distant future.

What do you think? Would you try a full-electric motorhome? Let us know what you think!


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