Westfalia releases details of all-new James Cook campervan
German campervan manufacturer, Westfalia, has released the first details of its all-new James Cook camper that will be built on the latest Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, featuring an innovative rear slide-out system to extend the length when pitched up to accommodate two full-length rear beds.
It is expected the new campervan will be launched in January 2019.
James Cook has been a name used by Westfalia for a range of its Mercedes-based campervans going back three decades.
This latest incarnation is aimed at the more affluent end of the campervan market, with prices predicted to start upwards of £60,000 (Westfalia says it is aiming for pricing to start at €70,000 but this may rise to €75,000). This puts it up against the VW California XXL (if this actually goes into series production) and the likes of the Crafter-based Knaus BoxDrive, HymerCar Grand Canyon S and La Strada’s Regent range.
However, the new Westfalia will only be available on the rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive 5.93m Sprinter. There will be no front-wheel drive version, which means the new nine-speed auto box will not be an option, only the seven-speed box will be available as an automatic option. Merc’s six-speed manual gearbox will be standard.
The new James Cook, which is still at the early design stage, will be available with three roof options – the standard Mercedes roof, which will be available for the two-berth model only, there will also be the option to have Westfalia’s own rising-roof, which is already being fitted to its Columbus models and which will make the new James Cook a four-berth, and finally, there will be an all-new fixed high roof option, which will offer a 2+2 layout.
The two main berths in all the options will be twin rear singles that attain their full 2m length using Westfalia’s slide-out system. This means the entire rear will be replaced with a GRP body, the top half of which will slide out and the bottom half will have a large access door to the under-bed storage. The layout forward of the rear beds will see a larger than usual washroom with flip-up basin above the WC and a full height shower.
The side kitchen will mimic that seen in Westfalia’s Sven Hedin campervan although with some enhancements, such as a front-loading fridge/freezer rather than just a fridge. The front lounge again sees a similar type of seating as in the Sven Hedin with the option to have a relaxation setting on the forward-facing bench seat that allows the back support to be tilted.
Westfalia says it will also include a new silent electric heating system that can run off 230V hook-up (it draws 1,850W) and which integrates with the standard-fit diesel heating system. Westfalia says anticipation is already high for the new James Cook, especially as no other converter will offer a campervan based on the new Sprinter with three roof options and a rear slide-out. However, it also said it is “taking its time” with the development to ensure it gets it right first time.