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RV Review: Hyundai Staria Camper 4, a Korean-market camper van

While our domestic vehicle manufacturers continue to drop lines of vehicles and focus ever more on pickups, internationally, things are different with much more creativity in what’s being done. Since this is a website about the RV lifestyle, I thought we’d take our virtual cruise ship across the pond once again and look at the Korean-market Hyundai Staria Camper 4. 

Hyundai has absolutely become a powerhouse vehicle manufacturer far removed from the days when we joked that Hyundai stood for “Honestly You Understand Nothing’s Drivable And Inexpensive.” While there’s no noise about bringing their newer Staria minivan to the U.S. market, that’s kind of a shame because the van itself is nifty, but the camper variant is even more so. 

Two versions of the Staria Camper

There are two versions of the vehicle: one that’s more camper than shuttle, and one that’s just the opposite, being able to seat 11 people. The most camper-esque model is the Staria Lounge Camper 4, based on the midsize van. It’s said to accommodate a family of four’s needs, both as a daily transport and weekend getaway machine. 

You know. Like the old Volkswagen Van but probably with brakes that actually will stop it and silly things like that. Don’t write, anyone who’s pressed the brake pedal on a 21-window van knows it’s more like sending a request to a radio station. You might get to your stop, but don’t expect to any time soon. 

Same’s true of the “go” factor in those. 

The Staria might look like some future generation electric vehicle, but it’s rather traditional. It’s powered by a 175-hp 2.2-liter turbodiesel or 268-hp 3.5-liter Smartstream G6DIII gas engine. Further proof that this isn’t for us Americans is the six-speed manual transmission in the diesel version. Although the V6 gasser does have an eight-speed automatic transmission. You can also get the diesel with the automatic. 

Pop-top variants of the Staria MPV

Both of these Camper vans are pop-top variants of the Staria MPV that Hyundai introduced a year ago with much fanfare—more than typically surrounds the launch of a minivan. 

The Camper 4 sleeps two campers on an upper bed and another two on the folding rear seat. That is a bench for sitting and folds down to a bed for snoring. For seating there are also two seats up in the cockpit because, well, the driver and passenger have to sit somewhere. These seats also swivel around so you can form a lounge of sorts. 

Oddly enough, there is a third-row bench seat which is part of the origami magic that makes into the bed at night. But this third-row seat doesn’t have seat belts. If this ever did make it to the U.S., the NHTSA would be all over making them change that. 

For camping, there’s a kitchen on the road side, I think, along with a small electric fridge. A table folds out the back for outdoor dining or food prep. 

I say “I think” because don’t Koreans follow their Japanese neighbors in driving on the wrong side of the road? So that would make our camp side their road side. Silliness. 

To keep the sink going, there’s about 19 gallons of water storage aboard (70 liters) and 10 gallons (40 liters) of gray water holding capacity. 

Controlling all the functions of the van is a 12.1-inch touch-screen display above the kitchen area—which is the perfect place for kids to mess with it. From here you can open the pop-top roof or the awning, among other things. 

The Staria Camper version with more van than camper

For those who require more van than camper, you can get a model that still has the pop-top roof but with a bigger focus on seating, offering 11 hind ends a place to sit. All those seats can fold flat for sleeping along with a bed in the pop-top so four can sleep. All the rest of your family gets to go out and pitch a tent, or just pitch a fit. Their choice. 

Since this model is more van than camper, there is no provision for meal prep or any other camper-related stuff. 

Staria Camper prices

Hyundai announced the new Staria Lounge Camper lineup last week, setting the base price for the Camper 11 at KRW49.47 million (approx. US$39,600) and the Camper 4 at KRW68.58 million (US$54,875).

*****

I would love to read your comments and suggestions over on our new forums, where you can weigh in and start or join a discussion about all things RV. Here’s a link to my RV Reviews Forum.

Tony comes to RVtravel.com having worked at an RV dealership and been a lifelong 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.

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Ralph Furley
8 months ago

Ahhh. The forbidden fruit 😍

Chris
8 months ago

Really wish to have this one in US soils. Don’t know we do not have any of these models.

Bill H.
8 months ago

I am considering giving up the Class A RV lifestyle, and going to a modified Class B lifestyle, where I would spend my nights in a pet friendly Red Roof Inn, Motel 6, or motel/hotel a similar nature, where I can park right in front of my room. I’ve noticed that these type of hotels/motels have rates that are equal to, or lower, than some RV campgrounds. I would still be able to fix my meals in the RV, but I would have a full bath, comfortable beds, refrigerator, and big screen TV to enjoy my evenings. During the day I could do my sightseeing in the Class B, fix my daytime meals, and use my own toilet if necessary, and if my wife wants to stay in the RV, the generator would allow the air conditioner to cool/heat as required.

Warren G
8 months ago

Pretty slick camper van. Although probably not for me, I can see it appealing to quite a few people, especially at the price. And I agree with Glenn A. that the quality is likely pretty good, based on their other vehicles.

Les Hall
8 months ago
Reply to  Warren G

My first thought, “pretty slick”.

Glenn A
8 months ago

I think those would have a significant impact on the van life market if they showed up on this side of the Pacific.

I’m sure quality exceeds most “conversions”.

manfred manville
8 months ago

This review is very apropos, because most of the stock Getty Images that RV Travel uses are of European RV’s, usually on the wrong side of the road.

Tommy Molnar
8 months ago

I guess if there are few other options, this might fit the bill. I’m not sure what the RV’ing lifestyle in Korea is like, but I’m also pretty sure Prevost hasn’t made much of a splash over there.

Steve
8 months ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

Maybe not, but there are nearly as many Ford pickups as here. The F-150 seems to be the “national vehicle” of American military personnel stationed there. And, 70 years after the end of the Korean War, there are still 10s of thousands of them in South Korea.

Steve
8 months ago

No , Tony, the Koreans drive on the right side of the road, not the “wrong side” like the Japanese and Brits. Remember the Korean War? Evertthing in Korea changed from “Japanese” to “American” after that. And that’s a reason that Hyundai, Kia, etc., can easily import so many of their models to the US!

Tommy Molnar
8 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Both comments are interesting, Steve. Thanks.

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