21 December 2022,
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Düsseldorf - Caravan Salon 2022
Over 235.000 visitors
During the 10 days of the Caravan Salon Düsseldorf 2022 the trade fair attracted more than 235,000 caravanning fans from 72 countries with 736 exhibitors from 34 countries in 16 exhibition halls. These impressive figures confirm that caravanning is still absolutely in vogue.
Words editorial staff
Messe Düsseldorf and the Caravaning Industrie Verband e.V. (CIVD) were delighted with these great results: “Despite a difficult economic environment we have succeeded in reaching out to visitors with extremely high interest in this form of holiday and concrete intentions to buy. Very striking was the excellent atmosphere during the entire duration of the fair, the connected passion for mobile leisure was noticeable at all times. Only Caravan Salon reflects the entire caravanning world with its great variety”, summarized Erhard Wienkamp, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf. He was also pleased with the fact that, again, more newcomers as well as many young families attended the caravanning fair. For these target groups the advice offered at the “StarterWelt” proved very helpful; and the Special “Abenteuer Selbstausbau/Adventure DIY” organized for the first time was also successful.
CIVD President, Herrmann Pfaff, was also very satisfied with the results of the 61st Caravan Salon:
“After two years with pandemic-related restrictions we were finally able to meet again under relatively normal conditions in Düsseldorf in 2022. As expected, this opportunity was used by many people to gather information on the innovations and trends in the caravanning sector. And Caravan Salon again more than lived up to its reputation as the leading trade fair. The 61st edition was not only the biggest ever but also set standards in terms of the quality and variety of exhibited products and novelties. There has never been a larger selection of motorhomes, caravans and accessories on display. In addition, the fair has developed into an important dialogue platform where our industry maintains close exchange with decision makers in the political sphere and tourism because the economic and touristic potential of caravanning as a form of holiday is far from being exploited and needs to be promoted more. The Caravan Salon has always been not only a stage for new products but also an emotional meeting place both for caravanning fans and for newcomers. This aspect has become even more important in the current times because motorhomes and caravans embody freedom, individuality and dreams connecting people. This is why it does not come as a surprise that our way of travelling gained in popularity even long before the pandemic and many vacationers could not imagine life without it today. An end to the caravanning trend is not in sight. In short: the 61st Caravan Salon not only thrilled its visitors but was also a complete success for organizers and exhibitors and is making our industry more than optimistic for the future.
Holger Schulz, Hobby Managing Director
“The Caravan Salon has once again been a very successful fair for Hobby. We were very happy with the response from journalists and the large number of visitors at our stand”
“The focus of our presentation was the new Hobby Maxia van based on the VW Crafter, with which Hobby is entering the premium van segment. Our Beachy, displayed on beach sand, already proved a highlight at last year’s trade fair. We are all the more pleased that we were able to provide another highlight with the presentation of our lightweight study Beachy Air together with the VW ID Buzz – both exhibited at a public fair for the first time. Düsseldorf as a fair location provides an ideal platform for our seasonal kick-off and we thank Messe Düsseldorf for the good service and great hospitality.”
Dr. Holger Siebert, Managing Director of Eura Mobil GmbH and Trigano Deutschland KG:
“This year’s Caravan Salon was characterized by great interest in the products, poor supply availability and high uncertainty about the future. People love mobile leisure and want to purchase vehicles despite significantly increased prices. Buying interest was significantly higher than expected. The fact that sales generally declined at this fair is due to the lack of base vehicles for motorhomes, especially from market leader Fiat. The global shortage in electronic components for vehicles results in prolonged production standstills – first at chassis and later at motorhome manufacturers. Across all our eight brands we found that customers buy on the spot when delivery times are short and prices secure. If, however, the product takes a year for delivery and dealers cannot give any delivery or price guarantees customers hold back. With some of our brands many motorhomes were sold on a Ford chassis because of the greater availability, whereas with our premium brand Eura Mobil the focus was on high-end motorhomes on a Mercedes-Benz base vehicle”.
Gerd Adamietzki, Chief Sales Officer at Knaus Tabbert.
“We are more than satisfied with this Caravan Salon. Our forecasts were exceeded significantly. Our dealers are enthusiastic and have given us plenty of positive feedback. Especially our multi-brand strategy with new base vehicles by Volkswagen, Ford, MAN and Mercedes-Benz was very well received by visitors and customers making for extremely positive sales figures. Overall, Caravan Salon again has been a resounding success for Knaus Tabbert because here in Düsseldorf the conditions are optimal,”
Christian Bauer, Chairman of the Board of Management of Hymer GmbH & Co. KG.
“For Hymer GmbH & Co. KG we can look back on a busy trade fair week and a good atmosphere at Caravan Salon 2022. The interest in our form of holiday continues unabated; especially high is the demand for comprehensively equipped motorhomes. Also in line with the trend are 4-wheel drive and self-sufficiency. This became evident in many personal conversations, confirms the ongoing positive trend in the sector while showing at the same time that our premium strategy precisely meets the needs of demanding motorhome users. The fair is a good platform for close exchange with dealers, partners and customers as well as interested people. This is why we are happy to have taken part again after three years. We exhibited with a completely new stand concept that conveys our positioning and the Hymer claim as well as important, future-relevant topics, such as the use of sustainable materials. Our trade fair highlight also fits in with this: the Venture S, a real crowd-puller. We are taking these impulses with us and are looking forward to autumn 2022, when we hope to see many interested parties again at our trade partners”
Bernd Wuschack, Managing Director Sales, Marketing and Customer Service of the Carthago Group
“Against the background of our supply and price situation, we had mixed expectations of success this year. We were all the more satisfied with the actual result of Caravan Salon. The attention that our form of holiday is still outstanding, was reflected in the good visitor numbers and the positive conversations at our stands. Despite the changes we had to make to the overall concept this year, the trade fair was characterized by high quality and a pleasant atmosphere for us. It should also be mentioned at this point that the cooperation and collaboration with Messe Düsseldorf works excellently. The crowning glory for our trade partners and us was the joint fair evening at the stand with our guest of honour Ralf Schumacher.”
Marco Lange, Managing Partner at la strada Fahrzeugbau GmbH
“In view of the overall economic situation in Germany we travelled to Caravan Salon with muted expectations; so the strong interest of buyers came as a positive surprise to us. We have posted respectable sales results and are very satisfied with Caravan Salon 2022”
Caravan Salon is extraordinarily well positioned in Halls 13 and 14 when it comes to accessories, technical equipment and interior parts. At no other event for caravanning worldwide experts and end consumers will find a larger, more comprehensive and international product range.
Jürgen Vöhringer, Managing Partner at Vöhringer GmbH & Co. KG
“Contrary to expectations this year’s fair was very well attended. The record number of exhibitors is definitely also very much due to industrial upstream suppliers. Suppliers are always a guarantee for innovation. Positive to note is that the expert conversations have clearly increased in quality over the past few years. The atmosphere in the halls is very positive despite such adverse conditions as supply chain disruptions, war in Europe and inflation. The industry recognizes the challenges and faces them with a positive attitude. Also commendable is the cohesion in this sector. We are very pleased to note that the number of visitors from Oceania, Asia and North America increased extremely this year. The organization of Caravan Salon was outstanding.”
Hall 3 was the heart for the Equipment & Outdoor and Travel & Nature sections this year. Hiking destinations from all over the world were presented here experienced great interest of outdoor fans. In particularly high demand were destinations close to cities such as those presented at the big joint stand of Tourismus NRW under the patronage of the Ministry of Economics.
Ute Dicks, Managing Director of Deutscher Wanderverband
“The fair has shown that people are looking for high-quality hiking tourism products such as the ‘Qualitätswege Wanderbares Deutschland’ (Quality Trail hikeable Germany) and in a natural landscape that is as intact as possible. They also attach great importance to sustainability in their leisure time. Likewise, their concerns about the changes induced by climate circumstances are evident. It is especially the hiking tourists that are committed to keeping their impact low. Hiking trails with access to local public transport, regional products offered at the accommodation and regenerative energy are becoming more and more important. Caravanning shows that sustainability also ranks increasingly higher in other tourism segments – whose basis is an intact natural landscape. This is why I am delighted that we explored the prerequisites and opportunities for sustainable nature tourism together with the Caravaning Industrie Verband during the fair. We must and will continue to work together to preserve our nature”.
Montserrat Sierra, Director of the Catalan Tourist Board
“Our participation in Caravan Salon this year was a complete success! Demand for Catalunya as a camping and outdoor destination was huge and our latest product, the Grand Tour of Catalunya, met with very strong interest. For us the combination of a stand and presentations at the Travel & Nature CONNECTED stage was perfect to inform the fair visitors about our various offers”
Ole Schnack, Managing Director of Landvergnügen GmbH
“Caravan Salon is a place where we can personally meet our customers and the “Landvergnügen” community. Here we can exchange in conversations during the hustle and bustle of the fair, solve problems together or share joyful experiences. I am particularly pleased to often see “old” customers explaining to new interested people how “Landvergnügen” works. Caravan Salon is especially well suited to this because here we can meet people from all regions in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium”.
Jarle Sänger of ‘Wandermagazin’
“Finally being able to exchange ideas face to face again – mostly without worries – how wonderful is that? There are still a striking number of hiking and outdoor fans, who love to be active outdoors and who are adventurous. At ‘Wandermagazin’ we were very busy and hope that in 2023 more tourism stakeholders from Germany and Europe will take part once again.”
All the latest news and trends came together at the German event: from the proliferation of different mechanical base vehicles to the mania for “urban vehicles”
Words Paolo Galvani
For a year in which novelties had to be counted, things didn’t go so badly at the Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf. Paradoxically, the need not to upset the market equilibrium while waiting for the shortage of base vehicles to be overcome and production to recover on orders not yet fulfilled, has led some companies to be more daring; instead of renewing the existing ranges, as always happens, and to introduce some slightly less traditional layouts, those who bet on novelties did it in style. Generally speaking, a trend that has involved almost all manufacturers, with a few exceptions in the highest range of the market, is the expansion of the range of mechanical base vehicles used: the end of an era in which the Fiat Ducato represented 80 percent of the market. Today, in the ranges of the main manufacturers you can find models based not only on the (discounted) Citroën and Peugeot alternatives, but also (or perhaps above all, at least in the entry and middle range of the market) on the Ford Transit. The American base is then joined by the German Mercedes-Benz (which was already well represented, but is now growing), MAN and Volkswagen, in the latter case even on its Transporter T6.1 popular in the camper van segment. When we talk about multi-purpose vehicles, or “urban vehicles” as manufacturers like to call them today, we enter the realm of the Ford Transit Custom which has conquered almost all specialists in this segment. Here there is also some presence of Citroën Spacetourer and Mercedes-Benz V-Class, which obviously join the consolidated Volkswagen.
Hymer Venture S
The real star of the show was the Hymer Venture S. Born three years ago as a Vision S prototype, it has now become a serial production vehicle, albeit in limited quantities. It was a huge challenge to bring it to production, given the innovations it brings with it. First is the large elevating roof with pneumatic side walls (which use the same basic technology as the Bürstner Lyseo Gallery TD): their structure guarantees greater thermal and acoustic insulation, while the material used allows the right amount of light to shine through the muffled, almost fairytale environment. The bedroom thus becomes a welcoming and satisfying environment. To make it habitable, all you need to do is press a button and wait a few seconds. The second innovation concerns the rear part of the vehicle where the living area has been positioned. Here there are real glass windows on three sides and the rear wall is divided into two parts: one part with the window opens upwards like a tailgate, while the lower portion flips 90 degrees to create a panoramic sunbathing “balcony” that allows you to really be in touch with nature. Internally, a fixed staircase gives access to the upper bedroom, while the bathroom can be expanded simply by pulling the side wall. Built on Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 4×4 mechanics, the Hymer Venture S is not for everyone: the price list starts at around €225,000.
The news that things were happening in this market segment had already been sensed in recent months with the first announcements were released. But, at the Caravan Salon, the explosion of “urban vehicles” was sensational: from an almost niche product whose roots go back to the Volkswagen California and the Mercedes-Benz Marco Polo, today they are on the lists of many manufacturers. The debut of the Panama brand in 2021 has certainly not passed quietly, with the Trigano group having created a special factory in Spain and also winning a copious supply of Ford Transit Custom which should avoid any problem of availability. Panama has designed its proposal between short and medium wheelbasex, in eight different versions. Pössl, active for some time with its Vanster / Campster (Citroën) and Vanstar / Campstar (Mercedes-Benz) has created the dedicated brand VanLine, while the new multipurpose type of vehicle has appeared in the lists of many manufacturers, including generalists: Adria, Bürstner, Dethleffs, Font Vendôme, Karmann Mobil and Laika, for example, which are added to the “historic” manufacturers more linked to the automotive world, such as Ford, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen.
Bürstner Lyseo Gallery TD
This is another prototype that has made the move to series production. This curious, semi-integrated vehicle turns into an overcab model when parked and completely rethinks the interior spaces: eliminating the bulk of the rear bedroom, its 699 centimeters in length gives an unexpected space to the kitchen and the transverse rear bathroom. Perhaps it is only the amount of space at the table that suffers a little: the dinette is forced to coexist alongside the large fixed staircase leading to the upstairs bedroom. Here the environment is decidedly unusual for an attic space: the environment is very high and the innovative pneumatic walls are enriched by two corner windows. In addition, there is a shelf that acts as a bedside table for storing smartphones, glasses or books when you go to bed. As in the case of its “close relative”, the Hymer Venture S, a few tens of seconds are all that is required to make this real additional room fully usable.
The electric that is not there yet
Although Europe continues to state that it wants to ban internal combustion engines from the market by 2035, causing concerns and anxieties in consumers who are intensely aware of this issue, the caravanning industry is not yet ready to change platforms. The needs of the motorhome user are too different from cars or light commercial vehicles, and in addition to seeking an autonomy that is impossible to achieve today, consumers also ask how and where it will be possible to recharge such vehicles when reaching the destination and they turn into a home.
The responses from the caravan industry at the Caravan Salon were few. The only electric vehicle commercially available is the VanLine e-Vanster, based on Citroën SpaceTourer, which has very minimal camper elements: only a folding roof with double bed and a folding induction cooker. To better equip it, you need an optional box purchased separately. Its “cousin”, the Campster, already ready for use, still runs on diesel. For the rest, a semi-integrated prototype equipped with an electric motor and range extender already presented last year was revised by Knaus. The e-Power Drive has a 35.5 kWh battery that should guarantee 90 km of autonomy, then the engine would come into action, the nature of which has not yet been defined.
Finally, Bürstner tried to make people believe it had a virtually ready-made, zero-emission camper van, showing off the Lineo C 590 Electric based on a Ford e-Transit. The basic characteristics of the “American” van (with 317 km of range with 68 kWh battery and fast charging) were revealed, but no figures measured by Bürstner for after its conversion to a camper, including its weight. The interior is identical to that of the diesel-powered Lineo C 590 model, but when we asked where the space for the grey water tank would be found, the reply was that there is not a solution for this yet … We should probably wait to talk about it again in around 2024/2025.
Hobby Beachy Air
Small, light and low-profile, ideal for being towed even by small vehicles: the Hobby Beachy Air proposal, for now only a prototype, weighs only 500 kg and has a maximum permissible weight of 750 kg. The lifting roof with rigid side walls makes it possible to stand in the rear, but easier for towing when closed. Inside, the design philosophy is that of minimalism, as with all standard Beachy models: no bathroom, but the possibility of having a Porta Potti. The small kitchen module can be used indoors or moved outside to prepare food outdoors.
Knaus Tourer Cuv
The Knaus Tabbert group does not lack the courage to be daring. Not only did it present two compact, semi-integrated motorhomes based on the Volkswagen Transporter T6.1 (offered as the Knaus Tourer Van and Weinsberg X-Cursion Van), but it also took another step forward and tried to make them even more “strange”: by reducing the height and adopting a folding roof covering the entire length of the vehicle, the result is the Knaus Tourer CUV. It share with the standard models a curious shower compartment created when required by lifting a portion of the rear double bed and raising a top portion of a shower cubicle. The product still needs to be fine-tuned in detail, but ideas are certainly not lacking.
Think about how a caravan is built and rethink it in a completely different way: this is what Knaus has done with its new Azur, which combines functionality, comfort and innovative technology. Its frame is made up of 22 Fiber Frame components bonded by a robot. The high-strength self-supporting frame ensures not only better stability and longevity, but also flexibility in the design of the interior space. Its surface is anti-UV and “self-repairing”: small scratches disappear by themselves because the material reforms due to the thermal effect, under the sun. Deeper damage can be eliminated by simple grinding and polishing.