From Dream to Reality: Knaus Innovates RV Design With Their Ultra-Modular 2024 Tourer CUV

Tourer CUV 20 photos
Photo: Knaus Tabbert AG
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Last year, we covered a European RV concept from industry-leading Knaus. Well, one year later, the Tourer CUV is a reality. Furthermore, it shook Europe loose of countless awards and nominations, and today, we see what the fuss is all about.
Every country and continent has a few RV and motorhome manufacturers that dominate the industry. Well, over on the other side of the Atlantic, Knaus is one of the names you'll meet quite often. Considering this team has been a staple of the European RV scene since 1960, it kind of makes sense.

Well, they're the minds and hands behind the wonder we see today, and to fully understand what we're up against here, let's take a little trip through imagination and place ourselves at the center of a life lived in a Tourer CUV. All you'll need is around €86K ($93K at current exchange rates) to get things started, which is quite lower than I expected considering all you're about to read; be sure to view the image gallery.

Now, CUV stands for something, "Caravaning Utility Vehicle," and that really tells us quite a bit about what to expect from this beauty. First off, it tells us that it's destined for the on-road life, as that's what caravans achieve. Secondly, the acronym tells us that this puppy is all about utility, and I couldn't agree more. As for "vehicle," well, you can figure that one out yourself. What does this mean for you and me? It means an RV that can do "stuff" and lots of it. After all, Knaus designed the CUV to be as dynamic and modular as possible and even suitable for year-round living.

Tourer CUV
Photo: Knaus Tabbert AG
Upon first sight, the CUV may appear to be your typical Class C RV, but upon closer inspection, you'll realize that the roof looks a bit different because it is. For the CUV, Knaus has decided to incorporate a one-piece pop-top roof, helping expand the interior of this mobile home by quite a few inches.

The idea behind this roof is rather simple. While we're using our Tourer for just that, touring, the redesigned roof is aimed at improved aerodynamics. Yet, once we finally settle down for a few days or more, it's time to pop the roof and really get into camping mode.

In tent camper fashion, electric motors - not air springs - take over at the press of a button and raise the roof of this home while you just sit idly by, enjoying the show. Extend the awning off to one side, open up the rear pass-through garage, and set up the rest of your campsite. Bring along as much gear and toys as permitted by guidelines because this one's in it for the long haul.

Another benefit of this sort of roof, and the fact that the interior can be used whether it's dropped or raised, is being able to adjust to whatever weather life throws your way. Is it sunny and the next minute pouring rain on a biblical level? Just lower the top and continue entertaining guests instead of lying around with the Mrs. Once the rain is gone, pop it back up into place, and ta-da.

Tourer CUV
Photo: Knaus Tabbert AG
Now, that's a neat little trick and one we don't often encounter in a Class C motorhome, but beyond self-lifting roofs and aerodynamics, the Tourer CUV's styling is all about utility while still keeping true to German design and ideals. In short, it's balance, utility, and lifestyle on a VW T6.1 chassis. Once all the exterior goods are in place and the roof popped, let's head inside, move a storage bin or two around to free up some headroom, and settle in for the stay.

Here's where things really become interesting. Each of the two available floorplans includes everything up to two people would ever need, including modular beds and modern and tastefully designed galley blocks, but it's the bathrooms that really blew me away, in particular, the one found in the 500 MQ; a testament to Knaus' know-how and ability to innovate.

If you remember the article we covered on a different Knaus machine, the standard Tourer Van, then you may know what to expect. If you don't, this is going to be a treat. If RV living is your kind of thing, that is.

Tourer CUV
Photo: Knaus Tabbert AG
Picture this: it's morning, and you've gotten out of bed and need to brush your teeth, and you know. But then you decide to take a shower and to do this, you must first, literally, pull out your shower cubicle. To do so, remove part of the bed cushions and lift the shower stall into place. It may sound odd, but once you see it and experience it, it's hella neat!

More of this modular magic can also be found in the 500 LT, where the dinette transforms into a bed at night. Also, in the 500 LT, entry is made via the rear of the right side of the unit, creating a neat hallway in the process. If you have kids and want to bring them along - up to two - optional forward bedding is available, although it's not clear if both units have this option.

Personally, I run through several motorhomes and styles each day, always searching for the coolest and most bang-for-buck machines out there, and Knaus has always been a crew that never disappoints, as you can clearly see.

The only downside here is that this unit is only available in Europe, where Knaus is already selling their vehicles. So, if you're living in North America, you're out of luck. But we can always use the Tourer CUV as the perfect example of a do-it-all motorhome.

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Editor's note: Images in the gallery showcase an array of Tourer CUV interiors and layouts.

About the author: Cristian Curmei
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A bit of a nomad at heart (being born in Europe and raised in several places in the USA), Cristian is enamored with travel trailers, campers and bikes. He also tests and writes about urban means of transportation like scooters, mopeds and e-bikes (when he's not busy hosting our video stories and guides).
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