Garageable Trailer - Not Fiberglass - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-02-2007, 06:00 PM   #1
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I saw a link for this trailer on this website. This is the email response from the maker.

Alto Teardrop with Telescoping Roof

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First of all I would like to thank you for the interest you have shown towards our products, more specifically towards our latest creation, the Alto. Due to the constant increase of gas prices and the social responsibility of each person to save on non-renewable fossil fuels we wanted to create an ultra light travel trailer with the lowest possible drag ratio. A trailer that met these two criterions could then be towed by a vehicle with a smaller engine. Furthermore, in keeping with our respectful approach to environmental issues, we wanted to choose construction materials that would not only be very light, but also recyclable as much as possible.

The Alto is therefore mostly built of aluminium and honeycomb material. The shape of the latter is mainly made out of recyclable plastic. The honeycomb shape adds rigidity to the structure while remaining extremely light. It also provides insulation because it creates a pocket of air between the exterior and interior walls. The aluminium is used to make the walls, cabinets, the entire chassis and frame, the propane tank and the wheels. We have opted for a "sandwich" construction, where we put our honeycomb material in between two sheets of aluminium.

Lightness was not enough to make the Alto as easy to tow as we wanted our travel trailer to be. Even with its unloaded weight of 1,360 lbs, it had to glide through the air like a plane’s wing to offer as little resistance as possible. Regardless, we still wanted it to offer a highly comfortable interior space. We therefore equipped the Alto with a mobile roof which gives a roomy 82" (2,08m) interior height when the top is opened. The tests that were done in a virtual wind tunnel revealed that when the roof is closed the Alto produces 75% less aerodynamic drag than a conventional 16’ travel trailer. Moreover, with its height of 83"(2,10m) it can be stored easily, as it can fit through a standard 7’ garage door. The roof is opened simply with the touch of a button thanks to two electric cylinders.

The development of the Alto began early in 2006 and the first units should be delivered in the spring of 2008. The road tests will continue throughout the summer and you will be able to access all the latest news by visiting our website. The Alto that was presented at the Montréal RV Show at the Olympic Stadium on March 8th was a prototype. It is currently the only one of its kind. In the months to come we will refine our production methods, make final decisions on the materials and set up our assembly line. The Alto will be built in a new plant across the street from the one where we have been building our Safari Condo’s for almost 10 years now. During the course of the year we will also add other floor plans and choose the standard color. We are taking advantage of the Spring RV shows to get responses from the public so that we can better meet their needs and expectations. Between now and next spring a network of dealers should be setting up. We hope that by then you will be able to see the Alto in your region. The list of dealers will also be available on our website. For a few more months the only place where you will be able to see the Alto is at our plant in Beauce, Québec.

[b]The price of a standard Alto is currently listed at 19,995$ CN. We now have a price list which includes the prices of all the options. I have attached it to my e-mail for you to consult. Please remember that because the Alto is a completely new product it is possible that some changes may be made to the prices in the coming months. There will also be additional options that should be added to this list once the Alto is in full production, this would included an outside shower outlet (please consult the Safari Condo motorhome website to see our rear shower to see what this would look like). On our website you will also find the list of all the available options as well as the weight that they add to the total weight of the standard travel trailer. Finally, right now we only have a basic brochure done for the shows, which is only in French. The info in this brochure is the same as on the website. We will make a full English brochure once we have all our interior plans and we are ready for full production.

Thank you again for your e-mail. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact me again. It will always be my pleasure to answer you.

Best regards,
Dominique Nadeau
Safari Condo
Bureau des Ventes Corporatif / Corporate Sales Office
(866) 836-6664
dominiquepn@bellnet.ca
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Old 06-02-2007, 06:25 PM   #2
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Interior shots

Nice interior!

A 17 foot tear drop.. and it fits in a garage.. could be a viable option for many.

The unanswered question.. $$$$$$?
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Old 06-02-2007, 06:32 PM   #3
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The unanswered question.. $$$$$$?
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The price of a standard Alto is currently listed at [b]19,995$ CN.
What's the current exchange rate? I read .94 to 1 in today's paper
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Old 06-02-2007, 08:11 PM   #4
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Thats the standard.. base price.

Usable price? I must have missed it, but I saw nothing on the website, only the options available, but no pricing.
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Old 06-02-2007, 08:12 PM   #5
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What an interesting set-up. That would help with the storage problem that many people have.

I couldn't tell if any of those windows opened or not. If they do you would have nice airflow.

I do like the tow vehicle.

Kathy
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Old 06-02-2007, 11:08 PM   #6
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My thoughts are that this is certainly not a light weight unit.

I would also like to see something along the line of a 13 ft. unit.

And, just wondering how they keep the rain out when the unit is open? Do they use gaskets or how does that work?
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Old 06-02-2007, 11:47 PM   #7
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And, just wondering how they keep the rain out when the unit is open? Do they use gaskets or how does that work?
Quote:
The roof is opened simply with the touch of a button thanks to two electric cylinders.
I'd like to see that process.
Viewing the panels across the back statically, I can only imagine, "some assembly required".
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Old 06-03-2007, 02:20 AM   #8
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It looks like plexiglass or lexan something of that sort on the "windows." You can see glare on the interior shots that Gina posted.

I'll stick with my Casita.
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Old 06-03-2007, 07:37 AM   #9
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My #1 thought is - can this put set up in the rain WITHOUT me getting wet? If the answer is no, then I don't want it, no matter how cute it is.
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Old 06-03-2007, 08:07 AM   #10
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My #1 thought is - can this put set up in the rain WITHOUT me getting wet? If the answer is no, then I don't want it, no matter how cute it is.
Certainly seems that way. If you look at the various interior shots on the website, coupled with the statement that it pops up with the push of a button, then presumably you can find some way to activate the 'button' remotely, from the comfort of your tow-vehicle... I doubt it comes with the virgin maidens who will transport you from the TV to the inside of the trailer while sheltering you beneath an enormous silk umbrella.
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Old 06-03-2007, 08:23 AM   #11
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its cute.. but not my cup of tea..... the bathroom 'closet' is way to public
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Old 06-03-2007, 09:30 AM   #12
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I don't even think it's cute. The one shot that shows the curtains (I think it was the front bed shot) all I could think was what a bunch of WORK everyday! If ya gotta build it everytime you camp and some during the camping trip...I'd rather stay home....and save the gas money. If getting a trailer inside a garage is a must....I'd consider the http://www.hilotrailer.com/ long before this thing. Different strokes for different folks.
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Old 06-03-2007, 01:10 PM   #13
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It is an interesting design, which looks like a development of something seen earlier in which the extension sections were fabric and screening, like a Compact. This hinged-teardrop configuration has attracted some discussion in the Teardrops & Tiny Travel Trailers forum, where the intent is to make a more usable space out the teardrop shape.

I appreciate the garageable feature - although many people wouldn't have a spare garage bay to put it in even if it does fit the door - but otherwise the whole folding thing does not seem worth the complication to me.

Another "not worth it" feature is the teardrop shape itself. They compare this to an airplane wing - too bad a wing is not designed for low drag (for its size) at all, but to produce lift (inducing drag in the process). I doubt that this is actually a low-drag design, for its frontal area, but it sure compromises space!

I do give them points for impressively obsessive use of aluminum. An Airstream probably has a lower aluminum content than this design - even the propane tank is the shiny metal (at several times the price of steel, as discussed earlier in this forum). Speaking of Airstream, I suspect that they have a similar target market, and associated pricing. $20,000 or $30,000, it probably won't matter to the intended buyer.
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Old 06-03-2007, 01:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
And, just wondering how they keep the rain out when the unit is open? Do they use gaskets or how does that work?
My concern with the [b]folding scheme is that the upper section telescopes to inside the outer section, so the joints are automatic water-collectors. A Hi-Lo or similar design puts the upper section outside of the lower, which wouldn't look as nice but will shed rainwater even with no seal at all.
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