Campa USA introduced its stainless steel, all-terrain trailer (ATT) in June and is beginning to make inroads in its two target markets: campers and avid outdoorsmen who need to navigate in hard-to-reach areas that are typically inaccessible by standard trailers, and state and federal governments for use in disaster and emergency response.
“Accessing remote areas has always been an issue for campers with towing units,” said Chris Cole, president and founder of the North Ridgeville, Ohio-based company. “But we provide a solution that allows our customers to literally go where others can’t.”
The rugged ATT can be equipped with features such as a water purification system, 12-volt electrical unit, generator, kitchen and cooking areas, sleeping quarters for up to eight people, solar panels and a hot water shower system. Other options include a compressor, two 22-gallon water tanks, refrigerator, two 10-pound propane tanks, large storage bins, fluid pump, hand sink and racks for bikes, kayaks and inflatables.
The patented unit is 11 feet long, 8 feet wide and 54 inches high. Depending on options, it has a dry weight of 1,600 pounds with a 5,500-pound capacity. Retail prices range between $15,000 and $17,000.
The company offers a limited lifetime warranty on the containers and chassis, and free servicing for life. “Because it is made of stainless steel people can hand it down to their children,” Cole said. “From a versatility, utility and longevity perspective, I think we have the best all-terrain camping trailer in the world. We’re hoping we can introduce America to the wilderness in America.”
The concept behind the Campa trailer was developed over the past 15 years in South Africa, where Cole was born and raised, and in Australia. He grew up on a game farm and has spent much of his life in the outdoors and under extreme conditions. “I like getting out where no one can go and being totally self-contained and independent when I am there. That’s my passion,” he said.
Cole has towed the Campa ATT over 60,000 miles in the U.S. and exposed the unit to rigors such as the Jeep Jamboree-Rubicon Trail in northern California in August.
“Successfully navigating the Rubicon Trail demonstrates the Campa’s ability to traverse extreme terrain as may be found after natural disasters,” said Cole.
Cole contends that taking a Campa trailer on this type of trail expands the horizons of the outdoor recreation experience.
“When you have the ability to be independent and self-contained in an area like this, as well as the ability to travel at speeds over 70 mph on a freeway with a unit in tow, you’re living an adventure,” he said. “The trail itself just becomes one part of that overall experience.”
The all-terrain systems fill a niche within the camping industry and are also being used for other applications. Campa’s Disaster Reconnaissance Systems (DRS), which are similar to the ATT’s, have generated interest on the state and federal levels for disaster and emergency response, he said.
One of Campa USA’s trailers is to be part of an 11-day, 7,500-mile expedition in mid-November, which will include the Baja 1000 and some of the harshest off-road environments in the world.
Lokey Truck Center of Tampa, Fla., organized the round-trip trek from Florida and will attempt it with a modified 2006 Chevy Silverado, which will run entirely on vegetable oil. The team will tow a Campa USA trailer that will serve as their sleeping accommodations.
The trip will be filmed and aired in late 2006 and early 2007 on the remaining episodes of Speed Network’s Truck Universe.
Campa trailers are available through the company or at dealerships in Tampa and Austin, Texas.