Renualt, I have been informed, previously came out with a van called the Hippie Caviar Hotel last year, based on its Kangoo van. The Hippie Caviar Hotel is a concept inspired, in part, by the late Renault Estafette. This year, Renault has a more scaled-down camper van concept called the Hippie Caviar Motel, which will be shown in Hanover next month. I would not be caught dead in either one.
The idea, in Renault’s words, is to “address the growing yearning for travel and opportunities to contemplate nature in idyllic settings while enjoying the comfort and amenities of a 5-star hotel.” This is a camper van for fancy people who also pretend to be starving artists, or something. It’s also probably not going into production, so it’s only worth a little scorn. Still, look at this garbage:
Disgusting. The van is all-electric, though, and Renault says it has several clever features inside, images of which they have not shared — perhaps because Renault would like to save those for a different news cycle, or perhaps because none of it is as clever as Renault thinks.
It is designed as a base camp that can hop effortlessly from one spot to the next: Hippie Caviar Motel has a 285-km range and it only takes 30 minutes to extend it by 170 km. Its engine develops 90kW (120hp) powered by a battery pack of 45 kWh able to recharge up to 80 kW DC.
Several smart storage spaces can carry sports kits inside and outside the vehicle.
The roof rack can hold skis and still has plenty of space for a huge panoramic roof to enjoy the stars after folding down the bench into a comfortable bed.
The idea behind the name, I suppose, is to invoke a time when bohemian people were driving around in a bunch of vans. Except those vans were Volkswagens, not Renaults. Renault is also late to this in the sense that hippie culture has been mainstream for half a century now. I’m not even sure if young people these days know what hippies are.
“Caviar,” meanwhile, is a cliche shorthand for rich people, though no rich person who actually eats caviar would like this van, because the first rule of eating caviar is you don’t talk about caviar.
“Motel” is the least offensive part of this name, though still an insult to all the fine motels of the world — many (most?) of which are preferable to sleeping in a van for the night.
This all, however, is likely a passing monstrosity, as concepts tend to be. Renault hasn’t uttered a word about production plans. Maybe Renault made this just to try to feel young again.