A motorhome is often seen as a low cost alternative to taking a holiday in Europe or on a long-haul trip, but in reality motorhome holidays can be extremely expensive. With the cost of regular fuel on the rise, this effect is being compounded considerably, and motorhome owners are looking to make savings in tough times.
One of the most popular ways of doing this is by seeking alternative fuels, negating the need for expensive petrol stops. The first fuel to break into the mass market is autogas, otherwise known as LPG (liquid petroleum gas), and plenty of petrol cars have converted their existing petrol engines to run on LPG. For motorhomes, though, this technology is difficult to incorporate and not compatible with diesel engines. LPG vehicles are, also, not allowed to use the Eurotunnel; one of the most popular motorhome routes.
Solar power is another realistic option for the motorhome owner, but it’s unlikely to ever generate enough power to replace a petrol engine. Plenty of motorhome owners use solar power for auxiliary tasks such as heating water and powering lighting, which can take the strain off petrol generators or the motorhome battery. However, solar panels are something of a motorhome insurance risk. As they’re mounted on the roof of the vehicle, they’re easily accessible to thieves and have been known to be stolen.
A final alternative is the fuel cell, essentially a large, rechargeable battery which, in the same way as solar panels, takes the strain off of any generators. Fuel cell technology is developing fast and we’re seeing large numbers of electric-powered vehicles on the streets at the moment. Though we are yet to see a fuel cell that could consistently drive a motorhome, there have been fully electric motorhomes released to market and it’s surely only a matter of time before fuel cell technology really takes over.