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An Australian company called Ultimate Campers is proving that when it comes to designing camping trailers, size really doesn’t matter. To the casual observer, the company’s new Ultimate Nexus appears to be a camper of diminutive stature but in reality, the trailer transforms into a surprisingly large living space with a few unexpected amenities hidden within.
If you put a ruler to the Ultimate Nexus, you’ll find that it’s just 13.7 feet in length, 6.5 feet wide, and just shy of 6 feet tall. However, the design team at Ultimate managed to squeeze quite a bit of functionality into that tiny space, giving overlanders and car campers an attractive option for their outdoor adventures. For instance, the Nexus’ pop-up tent opens to reveal a roomy, well-ventilated sleeping space that includes a king-size bed — something you wouldn’t expect to find in a trailer this small.
The interior of the Nexus is accessed via a small, folding staircase located at the back of the trailer. Inside, campers find a U-shaped leather lounge area, as well as a cooking galley which comes complete with a two-burner stove, a small fridge, and a fold-out dinner table. Hot and cold water is drawn from the built-in 110-liter water tank and is fed not only to the kitchen sink but the trailer’s forward shower system, as well. Warmth is provided via a gas heating system, while a 160-watt solar panel, coupled with two 100Ah lithium batteries, generates electrical power even when living off the grid.
Ultimate Campers built the Nexus from the ground up specifically for off-road adventures. The camper not only features large 20-inch tires to roll over rough terrain but it also boasts 22 inches of ground clearance. Ultimate even equipped the trailer with heavy duty 4×4 shock absorbers, an independent trailing arm suspension, and long-travel coil springs to provide stability when driving on rough roads or in places where roads don’t exist at all.
While the Nexus might be small in size, its price tag is anything but. The camper starts at roughly $58,400, although additional options such as exterior canvas awnings, a porta-potty, wireless reverse cameras, or a laser projector add additional expenses to the total cost. Those with the cash to spare can enquire with Ultimate using this online form.
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"Ultimate Off-Road Campers builds pop-up trailers that are tough on the outside, cozy on the inside.
The Nexus trailer rides compact and streamlined, and pops open at camp to reveal luxuries like leather furniture, a premium sound system and an indoor laser projector for showing movies hundreds of miles from the nearest theater.
Ultimate explains that it used all of its two decades of experience in designing, tweaking and selling camping trailers when developing the 14.1-foot-long (4.3 m) Nexus, its new flagship. It relied on its tried-and-true off-road-capable construction, light, aerodynamic design and cozy interior layout, while adding a longer list of standard and available features to raise the bar.
The Nexus chassis is of Duragal steel construction, and the independent trailing arm suspension relies on long-travel coil springs and off-road shocks. The trailer has 22 in (570 mm) of ground clearance, and large 20-in alloy wheels shod in Cooper S/T Maxx 285/55/20 tires.
Up above, a curvy composite body keeps airflow smooth and fuel economy up. It also provides a watertight, dust-tight shell over top the fold-out cabin and equipment inside, ensuring that no matter what you drag it through, it's ready to cook, sleep, eat and lounge upon arrival.
Unlike many other pop-up campers, which pop straight up and/or expand out at the ends, the Nexus flips out to the side. Ultimate says its trailers take about five minutes to set up, which involves opening the canvas tent and readying the inside.
The interior is really where the Nexus shines above and beyond what you might expect from a rugged, off-road pop-up. At one end, the galley houses a dual-burner gas stove, sink with glass lid, 110L compressor fridge/freezer, L-shaped carbon fiber countertop and plenty of storage. The other end is where the king-size bed calls home, and in between, a wraparound leather couch provides a place to sit. The removable table can be used inside or outside, with the included tripod base.
The Nexus is wired up with a 240V electrical system that relies on dual 100Ah lithium batteries for storage. It includes a 30A Redarc battery management system, 160W Redarc solar panel and 1500W inverter, powering equipment like the LED lighting, Fusion premium sound system, and myriad outlets.
The Nexus' most interesting electrical device is the optional Sony laser projector, which sets up inside, casting images on a screen that affixes to the galley window. It can show externally stored content wirelessly or via HDMI, providing a bit of modern entertainment far, far away from the modern world. This option launched with the Nexus but is also available on other Ultimate trailers.
Other standard Nexus features include a 110L water tank with gauge, built-in hot water system, outdoor shower, front and rear awnings, dual 8.4-lb (3.8-kg) gas tanks, jerry can storage, a nose cone storage area and a gas heater. Integrated rails on top make it easy to mount up a roof rack to haul gear. Options include an insert to turn the couch into a second bed, an external galley, awning walls and a spare room.
Ultimate launched the 1,875-lb (850-kg) Nexus in late April, and the new model starts at AU$73,500 (approx. US$55,650). That's a lot of coin for a trailer, but it is the flagship, and the other models in Ultimate's lineup have the same chassis/body construction and sizing, only with lesser levels of equipment. The entry level XTRK prices in at AU$46,000 (US$35,000), with king-size bed, interior galley, basic electrical system and other equipment."
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