• Aug 25, 2008
Click above for gallery of the Car Camel

You need something to carry a car, but you don't want just any old pickup truck or SUV because anybody could do that. And since you do have that vintage Dodge Caravan lying around... why not grab the chainsaw and make something really special?

Allow us to officially introduce the Car Camel. Apparently plying the highways of Ontario, Canada, it's a shortened minivan with a car hauler stuck to its backside. It ain't pretty, and it probably ain't too fast, but we have to admit that it is pretty neat... if you're into that kind of thing. Have a look at the gallery of images below, but if any of you get the idea to make a Car Koala... please, don't. Thanks for the tip, Zak!

UPDATE:
Jackpot! Autoblog reader Paul H found the owner's personal blog on which he explains how, and more importantly why, he built the Car Camel. Also check out more pics of the Car Camel, including it actually carrying a car, in the gallery below.


[Source: Photobucket]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 21 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't think I would want to use it to haul cars, the frame seems a bit flimsy for that much weight.

      It would be really good for dirtbikes. Easier to backup than a trailer, there seems to be enough room behind the seats to lock up extra gear and probably gets better gas mileage that a full size truck.
      • 6 Years Ago
      the guy did some CAD diagrams... lol... u have to love it... but he lives to far north to be a red neck...
        • 6 Years Ago
        Oh how wrong you are. Rednecks are everywhere, and not just transplants. Go to CA anywhere but the Gay Area or LA and you will find rednecks aplenty. Same goes for any other state or Country, they (we) are everywhere. I happen to be a good ole boy redneck from down South transplanted out West, but will God willing be making the move back to the Promised Land very soon.
        • 6 Years Ago
        He's hardly in the far north! Just in the Greater Toronto Area - now if we were talking north of Barrie then you may have something there.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't want to sound negative, but hasn't this idea already been done? Some company (I cannot think of off hand) had been making things such as Ford Superduties FWD, which allowed for an exceptionally low loading floor.









      Still, It's a great car, and I really like his intrepretation.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wow, I'm incredibly jealous of this tow rig. I wish I could have one of these to move my autocross car around rather than driving it hours to events.
      -N
      Carols Ray
      • 6 Years Ago
      Its awesome looking!!! better than the other short dodge caravan!!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      I remember seeing this done with a late '60s Eldorado... that would be a much more rational car-hauler. I can't imagine this thing could get out of it's own way with anything bigger than a Smart on board.
      • 6 Years Ago
      THAT is living the high life.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Being an engineer, unless those tubular rails are solid (meaning not tubular) then it might be okay; but the lateral bracing looks very weak to me. I would be very skeptical of the proper load/tow weight. Good effort; but lacking real integrity.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Solid beams don't add that much as far as strength or rigidity and they would add (probably literally) a ton of weight.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Eeek, they are NOT solid: "...the frame was to be used as an air reservoir..."

        BUT: "Because the minivan is a unibody type of construction we had to build a fairly substantial subframe inside to attach the deck to. What we did was probably overkill but I figured better safe than bent."
      • 6 Years Ago
      This guy was at Targa Newfoundland last year, I was gonna grab a Pic but it looked so well done that I figured it might have been a small fleet vehicle.

      He was carrying an original Mini to compete in the Targa!
        • 6 Years Ago
        Ah, early Mini, Smart, same thing. (The mini's probably lighter. ;)
      • 6 Years Ago
      You gotta make due with what you've got sometimes! Good effort... I wonder what the tow/haul rating would be - and +1 to 'why not the LS2LS7?' - hopefully he/she beefed up the unit construction.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I wouldn't want to get hit from behind driving that thing, but it's a good effort.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Thanks for the link to the blog. He makes a good argument for the project:

      "The idea of lifting the car more than a meter in the air so that it could be carried over the top of the differential and suspension of the flat bed seemed to be ridiculous. I figured that a much better solution would be to use a front wheel drive vehicle and carry the load on a deck between the rear wheels."

      It's actually a pretty bright idea. Coolest thing about it is that he can drop the rear and make it so you don't need a loading ramp. The only problem would be that I would assume that the extra weight of another car on the rear wheels could make the FWD grip (steering and acceleration) a little spooky.
        • 6 Years Ago
        FWD front wheelie? That would be an epic tragedy.

        Ha!
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