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oct 11

Is This the RV of the Future?

The Ecco camper van (Courtesy )
How the Ecco expands (Courtesy)

The Swiss have come up with a new recreational vehicle, or camper van, in apparent homage to the legend of Captains Kirk and Picard.

About as long as 1960s Volkswagen van, the Ecco can double in living space by flipping open "like a Swiss Army knife." There's a flip-out deck, expandable walls, and fold-down seats. It can sleep a family of five.

The Ecco is powered by electricity, which means you need to be near a power source to plug it in at night. An eight-hour charge supposedly lasts a full day, providing enough juice to reach highway-driving speeds.

In the auto world, just about everyone lies to you. Is this concept car legit, do you think? The three-wheeled, teardrop-shaped vehicle seems to have little clearance off the ground. No off-roading in it, for sure. And if a tire blows out, what do you do?

The Swiss company NAU promises to put the Ecco on sale in 2014, but hasn't suggested a price. We have to doubt this will ever exist in real-life. But then again, neither did the Enterprise. We still dig both.

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Note:This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.

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