Tuesday, December 7, 2021

MENU

RV review: 2022 Opus Camper OP15 overlanding trailer

In response to the article I wrote about the forthcoming Lance Camper Enduro overlander, I got an email from RV Travel reader Ralph C asking if I’d seen the Opus® Camper line of campers. I hadn’t, but it fits into the same category as some of the others I mentioned in that Lance article. 

These overlanding trailers are becoming more popular on the Internet and, while I have no idea how well they’re selling in the real world, I know that the articles about them are very, very popular here. 

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the Opus Camper OP15 adventure/overlanding trailer. 

Opus Camper

I was initially surprised to learn that Opus Camper trailers are actually made here in the good ol’ US of A, although in California, which is sort of its own weird country. Yep, the company is actually a part of Purple Line LLC, which makes some parts for RVs. 

The trailer lines they make are specifically targeted at those who are serious about going places where there are no roads, so you get the kind of design elements that reflect this. For example, the independent trailing arm suspension sports coil springs and dual shocks, the kind which we’ve seen in things like the Black Series, for example. 

The company’s references are to “Tough Luxury” – which means they’re well made but they ain’t cheap. The information I got was that the base price for the OP15 is $53,000. I’ve written that I’m surprised by RV pricing of late. But for those seeking adventure, this might not be such a big price hurdle. 

Consider the really heavy-duty frame on this or the oversized tires. Then there are also the two spare tires and the solar and battery system. Oh, and did I mention that there are 63 gallons of fresh water aboard? And enough cargo carrying capacity to handle that payload with the ability to load almost a ton aboard. 

Cool features in the Opus Camper OP15

There was a lot of thought that went into this design, but let’s start with the bed, which is actually a queen-sized bed. That bed is deployed by dropping the two spare tires in the back of the trailer, which are on a gas assist, and then a floor/door. Open the barn doors, lift the hatchback and deploy the bed. 

Inside the trailer you’ll find seating and a bunk. So there’s sleeping for four folks here. At the table is a Lagun table mechanism which I really like since it allows for pretty limitless motion of the table. 

Headroom is substantial in here with a pop top design that raises the roof easily. That also gives you better access to the restroom. The company reports it has a proper gray and black tank rather than a cartridge toilet. I’m not sure if that’s a plus or a minus, but a true adventurer might find themselves replacing this with a composting toilet. That would be a great option with the urine stream plumbed into the gray tank. 

Speaking of off-grid and all, this trailer is pretty well-suited to life far away from shore power with three 100-amp-hour AGM batteries and 300 watts of solar. There is an inverter, as well, but specs weren’t available at press time. 

Get cookin’ in the Opus OP15

The interior of this trailer is nifty, but I especially thought the kitchen was well designed. That kitchen is outside and starts with a 12-volt Dometic cooler-style refrigerator. This unit has two wells and each can operate as a refrigerator or a freezer. You could start your journey with both at freezing temperatures and then, as you consume your food, you could switch one to refrigerator temp and then the other.  

Next down the camp side is a drop-down prep table. There’s a drawer to the left of that and a lockable pantry above. 

Lastly, there’s a long sliding drawer that holds a four-burner cook top and a stainless steel sink. A very clever dish drying rack folds up above the sink and there’s a silverware drawer under the stove top. It’s amazing how much is out here in the various drawers and such. Plus, a 12-volt LED light can illuminate the area. 

Tongue is cheeky

While the tongue of most travel trailers is nothing to write home about, this one is different. 

You see the substantial nature of the chassis, of course, but I also like that there’s a hand brake on the tongue. I wish all travel trailers had this. 

There’s also a flip-up wheel whose crank handle is held on magnetically. You can flip the wheel up and pull the handle off and it doesn’t interfere with the ground clearance of this trailer. You can also raise and lower the wheel with a power drill if you’d like. 

Underneath the trailer, the water tanks are protected by diamond plate so you don’t rupture them when finding that ideal backwoods trail. 

Some of the specs I’ve seen in more mainstream RVs are features that I like a lot. These include the Lexan dual-pane windows with integrated shades and screens, and the Truma Combi water and space heating system. 

In summary

There have been quite a few entries into this field of late, including the all-new Ember RV 191, the Black Series, the AntiShanty Overlanding trailer and the Off Grid Trailers Switchback series. We just looked at the Lance Camper Enduro and, way back, we examined the RKS Purpose, which I really liked because the gray tank flushed the toilet – a brilliant use of water resources. 

I now see why Lance has entered this market. The more I look, and hear from you, the greater number of these overlanding trailers there seems to be. 

Considering that Ember just made a big splash with their overlanding rigs and Lance is dipping its foot into the market, it could be that this category is larger than I expected. 

I wish traditional trailers had some of the features of the Opus OP15

I wish, also, that some manufacturers of traditional trailers would look at some of these features, including the flip-up tongue jack and the hand brake on the tongue. Further, if this company can put 62 gallons of fresh water on a trailer of this size, I think we can certainly do better with even mid-sized trailers. Especially if the RV industry keeps betting on boondocking to save their cushy business model. 

It’s interesting how popular the articles about these overlanding trailers are, so I’ll keep working to find them for you. I do think this one has a lot going for it, especially an extremely well-thought-out kitchen. 

But what’s your opinion of the black tank? Would you rather see a cartridge toilet, an option for a composting toilet, or is this the way to go? I’m flushed with anticipation to read your responses. 

Tony comes to RVTravel having worked at an RV dealership and been a life long RV enthusiast. He also has written the syndicated Curbside column about cars. You can find his writing here and at StressLessCamping where he also has a podcast about the RV life with his wife. 

These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.

Got an RV we need to look at? Contact us today and let us know in the form below – thank you!

##RVDT1727

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Fresh water capacity
Solar/battery package
Outdoor kitchen design
Brake on tongue
Black tank instead of cartridge toilet

SUMMARY

The Opus OP15 is one of a number of adventure-focused trailers that sports a great suspension and chassis design along with a very innovative and useful outdoor kitchen.

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

3 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Tommy Molnar
28 days ago

This trailer has some good stuff. I like the suspension system. They’ve built this to do serious back country camping. But I’m not a fan of outdoor kitchens. That’s serious fair weather stuff. And if the wind blows too hard you can’t keep the stove lit. I have this problem with my propane bbq, even at home! I’m also not a fan of ‘roll-out’ beds. If I’m in bear country (or any other bigger-than-me animals) I don’t think I would feel all warm and fuzzy hanging outside of my trailer like that.
As far as the black tank is concerned, if you are seriously way out there, you don’t even need a toilet. I’m sure all us former tent campers know that.

Gigi
28 days ago

I wonder how it will do in bear country with the kitchen outside and the pop up top that a bear could easly break into.

Kiki
28 days ago

I just sold a trailer because it had a 10 gallon black tank. Bought it last year based on lack of supply and review here. Didn’t lose much on the sale but it was worthless for dry camping. Heard one sales guy at the dealership call it an Instagram trailer! Anyway, what are they thinking with all the fancy off grid components and that tank. You’re right, it needs a cartridge toilet. And then don’t do too many dishes or take too many showers.