No, this isn’t a ‘Europe-only’ offering like this sweet Peugeot Boxer 4×4 Concept Camper or the Limited Edition California 30 Years Camper. Finally, North America is getting a proper German pop-up camper straight from the production floor — something adventures and weekend warriors have been yearning for.
And the Stuttgart-based automaker knows it, finally taking action. “We have known for a long time that this market need was unmet as evidenced by the high demand for aging existing camper vans still on the road,” says VP Robert Veit from Mercedes-Benz USA Vans. Well aware small campers “hit a very large sweet spot in the market.”
Well, Mercedes-Benz stepped up with the 2020 Weekender. Built in partnership with Seattle-based Peace Vans (a leading classic camper van repair and restoration shop in the US), and Driverge Vehicle Innovations (part of the MASTERSOLUTIONS program), the Weekender is built of Mercedes’ proven Metris cargo van platform.
So, modern features like rearview camera and ECO start/stop are nice additions adopted from the commercial van. Along with 5,000 pounds of towing capacity – enough to pull small toys and another compact travel trailer (if you really wanted to).
Sprinter camper van conversions are another choice in North America, like the California-Based Lexani Motorcars badass EXTV Kalahari 4×4 Sprinter. But these travellers are next-level luxury reserved for deeper pockets.
Again, that’s why this less posh camper from Mercedes-Benz puts a smile on our faces.
Inside the new Metris Weekender
With seating for five passengers, expect it to sleep four comfortably on a 2-inch foam mattress, including a lifting roof that sleeps a couple, and a rear multi-function rear bench also converting into sleeping quarters.
Front passengers find 180-degree swivelling seats for those long drives, converting into a multipurpose lounge when it’s time to chill. The audio and navigation can be upgraded, but Mercedes-Benz hasn’t yet told us to what (More speakers? Bigger touch screen?).
To power up those devices and keep the lights on, Mercedes-Benz blesses this traveller with a second battery solely for this purpose. When the roof is lifted, more USB ports are available. Solar panels and Off-Grid Power keep in extended trips in mind with built in solar charging capacity.
Exterior features small camper van fans can appreciate
Outside, 200 colours of 3M wrap are available to ensure a custom look. And for the hardcore campers, an 8’ awning for shade and rain protection, sliding door screens to keep bugs out, and a tent that swiftly attaches to the rear lift gate for added space and privacy, are a major bonus.
The roof racks will secure surfboards while extra storage keeps skis and snowboards in place.
Oh, and for those who like to cook, there’s a pullout rear kitchen is also in the mix.
Starting Spring 2020, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender is open for orders from any authorized Mercedes-Benz Vans dealer nationwide. For more info and to order a 2020 Weekender, hit up the Mercedes-Benz camper van site here.