Designed specifically for the newer, more powerful electric bicycles, these trailers are like upgraded bikepacking, offering one-person accommodation and the basic creature comforts for overnight or sometimes longer stays in the great outdoors. They're compact and lightweight, and sometimes integrate unexpected features that turn them into surprisingly cozy habitats for the unpretentious traveler.
The Expedition Trailer is one such surprising basecamp. Designed and built by Swiss designer Gerhard Weber through his Gentleman Style and World company, it boasts an angular, teardrop-like shape that rides on beefy fat-bike tires and features Weber heavy-duty coupling with carbon drawbar. The body can be built from foam core plywood or, according to budget, aramid fiber or even carbon fiber for the most weight reduction.
The Expedition Trailer is offered standard with wheel prep mount for brakes, rear lighting (but no battery), and front support. Boat paint is used for the exterior, and 10mm insulation renders the interior cozy even in more extreme temperatures.
Unless specified otherwise, the Expedition Trailer is 224 cm long, 115 cm tall, and 90-120 cm wide (88 by 45 by 35 to 47 inches), so it still fits cycle paths in the EU. If only theoretically, you could take it for a spin in the city, though it was designed for travel expeditions, as its name says.
Options range from a fold-down galley in the rear to floating shelves in the front or back, a ventilation fan, and a battery for lights and appliances. Even with a carbon fiber body, you still have to keep in mind that all these will add weight to the trailer.
Speaking of weight, you're looking at an extra 55 kg (121.2 lbs) to tow with your e-bike, and that doesn't include whatever cargo you plan on putting inside. Weber tells one media outlet that he did build a 36-kg (80-lb) unit, but it sounds like that was a rare exception. He also says he's working on an offroad version of the trailer and considering adding optionals like a small water tank, a heater, and a mini-fridge.
The cabin could be described as cozy if you're feeling generous and are into bikepacking yourself or cramped if you're a fan of larger RVs. There's a one-person bench inside that extends into a single bed at night, and just enough space left for a table, some shelves, and storage. With the extra options, it becomes quite a self-sufficient mobile home for the rider looking to stay out of the city for a couple of days.
With the extra options, pricing also goes up. The biggest downside right now about this new type of mini-trailer is that they're priced quite prohibitively, with figures that would get you a second-hand, bigger RV or even a used daily driver you'd sleep more comfortably in. That makes them exclusively, albeit not intentionally, reserved for diehard cyclists and bikepackers with a lot of money to burn.
High pricing and the slow production rate make the Expedition Trailer a premium product, which, in turn, makes the decision to limit production to custom units feel like the right choice. Then there's always the DIY route.