Dethleffs e.Home Electric RV Is the Last Thing You Want During a Solar Eclipse

Dethleffs e.home 10 photos
Photo: Dethleffs
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Motorhomes are the kind of thing that you either like or you don't. If you're part of the latter, it might be because you've never tried one so far, but that's not a guarantee that once you do it you'll join team RV.
One thing these vehicles were missing - apart from proper room - was the choice between different powertrains. Most of them are powered by diesel engines, and some might use gasoline, but there was no real choice for those who park their Teslas on their driveway despite there being plenty of space inside the garage, if you know what we mean.

There was no clean, environmentally-conscious way of traveling while piggybacking your home, and German RV company Dethleffs duly spotted the gap. To fill it, it came up with the e.Home project - an Iveco Daily Electric chassis converted to host all the amenities that one might need during a vacation.

The focus of the e.Home is electricity, and that goes beyond the vehicle's powertrain. Speaking of which, it has remained unmodified from the standard Iveco model, meaning it gets an 80 kW motor and a 228 Ah battery pack of sodium-nickel-chloride cells that offer a maximum range of 174 miles (280 km).

While not exactly road trip-worthy, that would still be impressive for a vehicle this size. However, the figures apply for the bare chassis, so with all the added weight, expect it to drop significantly, probably somewhere around 100 miles (160 km).

Still, no need to despair since the entire e.Home is covered in thin-film solar cells that feed directly into the vehicle's batteries. While the panels cover an impressive area, they're still not going to provide a lot of mileage. They will, however, offset all the electrical appliances on board, and there are quite a few.

The Dethleffs e.Home comes fully equipped with a kitchen, bathroom, dining area, and sleeping quarters, but that's nothing special. The heating system, on the other hand, is. The electric RV gets "latent heat accumulator plates" that can absorb heat during the day and then slowly release it over night. There are also infrared heating elements integrated into the floor and furniture for an even spread and low power consumption.

For now, the Dethleffs e.Home is just a concept, though. Its limited range would be enough to put most prospective customers off, and solving that issue for vehicles this large and heavy is still something the industry appears to be working on, so there's no telling when emissions-free motorhomes will become a thing.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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