By Steve & Tamami Laser
Over the years we’ve owned three different campervan conversions. Yet these days it’s not easy to find one that will fit into the garage. The new Toyota Proace Lerina Campervan conversion prepping to launch in the UK is an excellent choice. However, the basic van isn’t certified for sale in America so all we can do at the moment is dream about it.
Toyota sells the Proace medium-duty commercial van in Europe in a variety of panel and combi models plus the Proace Verso passenger van. The second-generation Proace continues a collaboration between Toyota Motor Europe and PSA Peugeot Citroën. Proace, the Peugeot Traveller and Citroën Spacetourer are produced at the PSA plant in Valenciennes, France.
Toyota GB has announced that Proace will soon be available in a new campervan conversion dubbed Lerina (named after the Lérins Islands near the French Riviera). Built on the medium-wheelbase Proace Comfort by UK conversion specialist Wellhouse Leisure, sales are planned to begin at select Toyota dealers in England, Wales and Scotland.
Proace Lerina measures 4.95m long and 1.98m high that Toyota GB says is sized right for car parks and to “pass beneath most height barriers.” The pop-top, sourced from German manufacturer SCA, offers stand-up space for passengers when the van is parked.
The good-looking cabin features a side-mounted kitchen plus a rear bench seat that folds out into a double bed. Swiveling front seats (that bring to mind our first camper from the disco era) transform Lerina into a mobile lounge. Meanwhile, the rear seats slide forward for extra cargo space on the go.
Customers can opt for two additional removable seats for six-passenger capacity. Other goodies include a side awning, LED cabin lights and a double bed for the pop-up roof which means four folks should be able to sleep comfortably inside.
The list also includes an electric power hook-up, a solar panel, aux battery, 2.2kW heater with timer, storage space, a wardrobe, kitchen sink, gas hob, 25-liter fridge, fresh-water tank and a portable toilet.
Proace Lerina is powered by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbodiesel that puts out 120bhp when teamed with a 6-speed manual gearbox or 180bhp with an automatic. Finishing touches include 17-inch alloys, satellite navi, cruise control, air conditioning and a TFT multi-info display.
Assembled by Lunar Campers, Toyota says left-hand-drive versions are planned for export to dealers in Europe. Prices in the UK are slated to start at £42,000 (about $58,000). Could they build one for us? At the moment, this machine remains out of reach for us in Southern California.
Due to the stiff tariff on cargo vans imported to America and the fact that Toyota’s U.S. market Sienna is doing just fine here, it’s unlikely the Proace will ever come stateside. However, with Ford, Nissan, Ram and Mercedes-Benz selling midsize commercial vans in America, perhaps Toyota would like to join the party? And if they do, maybe one day we could sleep tight in the campervan conversion of our dreams.
Specifications, features and prices for UK market models are subject to change without notice.
News source and photos courtesy Toyota (GB) PLC
Story © 2018 CarNichiWa.com