This looks fun, really fun. The Volkswagen California XXL Concept sees Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles take the concept of the California – the most popular camper van ever – and apply it to the next size up in camper vans, the new Crafter.

The California XXL is based on the Crafter TDI 4Motion with the medium wheelbase of 3,640 mm and overall length of 5,986 mm. But VW has extended the superstructure above the tornado line to the rear to make room for a big bed that can comfortably fit two adults. From the height of the tornado line upwards, the XXL has an overall length of 6,238 mm.

Overall height is 2,900 mm, making it some 102 mm higher than a Crafter panel van with the “Super High Roof”. The extra headroom gives the interior a comfortable standing height of up to 2,200 mm and an alcove at the front. This latter is located right above the cab and has been specially designed for two children.

The multi-variable interior includes a pull-out wet room with shower and toilet and the rear bed, which can be folded away in sections in “a matter of seconds” in order to either increase the size of the kitchen or to create a cosy seating corner. Viewed from above, the motorhome can be divided into six areas, which, depending on usage, merge into each other.

The six areas are the living and dining area; kitchen with sink, gas hob and fridges; wet room with shower, sink and WC; spacious sleeping area at the rear; alcoves for two children; and an integrated cab.

The kitchen, the wet room and the living and dining area take centre stage in this mobile home, which striped cork floor resembles a ship’s deck. The large sliding door provides direct access to the living/dining area. A handy feature is the specially designed drawer for dirty shoes near to the door. The kitchen and wet room are to the left of the door and thus right in the middle of the California XXL.

The roof section is fitted with wall units and dual ambient interior lighting. The large panoramic roof provides natural light, but its light strips keep the interior bright during bad weather or in the evening. There are nine 220V sockets and six USB charging ports in this home.

The kitchen is much larger than is typical of a camper van of the Crafter’s size. Thanks to an extendible work surface that pulls out to the left and a second board that swivels to the right and that folds up to serve as a partition to the sleeping area at night, the kitchen worktop can be extended from 1,100 mm to 2,050 mm.

There’s a twin-hob gas cooker (electrically retractable into the surface), a sink, a double fridge (50 litres each, one with a 4L freezer), drawers for dishes and cutlery, a waste bin and a magnetic spice rack.

One of the biggest challenges when designing a slim camper van is the integration of a sufficiently large and functional wet room. VW’s retractable shower and toilet unit looks like a cabinet front when it isn’t in use, with just a little heart engraved in the surface of the door, reminiscent of the wooden privies of yesteryear.

To use, pull-out the compartment like a pantry door. The floor of the wet room is connected to the pull-out compartment and extends along with the integrated shower tray. When extended, the floor area of the wet room doubles from 600 x 600 mm to 1,200 x 600 mm. There’s a full-size fixed toilet and a wall-mounted, fold-away sink with a tap, which can also be pulled out for use as a shower head thanks to a hose extension.

Located just below the ceiling of the wet room is a big rain shower head. Hot water is provided by a gas-fired boiler. An electrically controlled skylight window in the roof over the wet room can be completely opened.

The living area has a big table, four seats and an integrated espresso machine. All of the windows are fitted with double plissé blinds. The elongated superstructure contains a bed that is a full two metres long and 1.7 metres wide. The California XXL’s electrical system can be used to heat the bed in winter or to cool it in the summer. The panoramic roof affords a view of the stars at night.

Families with small children can use the alcove fitted with a cot. Looking out at the front, a panoramic window in the roof affords fantastic views of the scenery or camp site. Children can climb up to this bunk bed via a stepladder that can be folded away.

Two camping chairs can be stowed away in the tailgate. Behind that, there’s a large storage space that’s also accessible from the inside. Also housed in the rear section is the on-board technical equipment, including the underfloor heating, hot water boiler, fresh water tank (140 litres) and a waste water tank (90 litres). The 37-litre gas tank, meanwhile, is located on the outside, underneath the vehicle.