Camper Trailer of the Year Finalist 2015: Tambo Rubicon
Make no mistake, the Rubicon is all business. There’s more ground clearance than a monster truck on ’roids. Okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating just a tad but you get the point. The only thing that can really get hung up on the tracks is the jockey wheel mount. The mounting bracket hangs a bit low, making it by far the first point of contact but, to be honest, there’s not much alternative given the height of the camper, and you’d be doing well to bottom it out either way.
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
A quality set of alloy rims coupled with the 265/75 R16 full mud-terrain tyres gives the Rubicon plenty of stance, traction and durability on the tracks, and there are also 12in offroad electric brakes to help keep things under control on those steep hills, like on our test run in the High Country.
The chassis looks as tough as guts with plenty of bracing for extra strength and a 100x50x4mm RHS drawbar, which has been proven time and time again in offroad camper trailers all over the world. The Tambo runs full independent suspension, which is actually made by Vanguard specifically for Tambo.
The body is finished off with your everyday edge prime and two thick coats of enamel. Plus, there’s also a good-sized stoneguard on the front that keeps everything well protected.
So we’ve established that the bare bones of the Tambo are rock solid but, to be honest, it’s the little things that prove these camper trailers are built by real enthusiasts for real-world camping – including the under-body stoneguard, which protects the suspension trailing arms from stone damage. The front stoneguard design is very practical, and allows you to access the spare wheel very easily. I wasn’t entirely rapt with the rear under-body water tank having the drain valve in such a vulnerable position but, realistically, it’s an easy fix, and something I’m sure Tambo will get on to pretty quickly.
There is no shortage of storage in the Rubicon but, more importantly, it’s very accessible storage that’s on offer. The front half of the trailer tub is one big storage compartment which is easily accessible by a door on each side. You can also get in there through the top if you tilt the tent up. The tent is on gas struts, which makes it a lot easier to raise the lid. On top of that, there are several storage compartments around the outside of the camper along with a good-sized storage box on the drawbar, too.
HITS & MISSES
- High quality tent
- Very sold construction
- Heaps of clearance
- Jockey wheel mount hangs low
- Water tank drain valve is vulnerable
TAMBO RUBICON SPECS
- Tare 1120kg
- ATM 2000kg
- Suspension Vanguard independent
- Brakes 12in electric offroad
- Coupling Treg offroad
- Chassis One-piece DuraGal 100x50x4mm RHS
- Drawbar One-piece DuraGal 100x50x4mm RHS
- Body Steel
- Wheel/tyre Six stud 16in alloy rims with 265/75 R16 mud-terrain tyres
- Style Side-fold softfloor
- Box size 2300x1800x570mm
- Length (hitch to tail lights) 4800mm
- Tent size 3000x2400mm
- Gas cylinders 2x4.5kg
- Water 85L poly tank with hand pump
- Cooktop Two-burner with grill
- Kitchen Powder-coated with fridge
- Battery 2x100Ah AGM
Price as Shown
Check out the full feature in issue #97 February 2016 of Camper Trailer Australia magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration.