This brilliant camper might seem familiar to some readers. It's called the Beauer 3XC, and it's among the latest offerings from this niche camper manufacturer in France. It's also insanely practical, mounting to a van or truck with a compact design that expands to create a generous living area once parked.

It's familiar because we featured the 3X expanding camping trailer from Beauer last year. The 3XC evolves the concept by ditching the trailer completely, instead mounting the telescoping camper directly to a vehicle. It's not a drop-in camper like you'd use on a pickup truck – this requires a chassis cab with a flat floor. However, once installed and retracted, the result is a camper with the same general size as a normal van. At the campsite, it opens up to become a modest 129 square-foot motorhome.

Gallery: Beauer 3XC Telescoping Camper

As with the 3X trailer, the Beauer 3XC has electrically-operated telescoping sides that are supported on each end when extended. Inside you'll find a combination living room/dining room that can accommodate five people. It's next to a sizeable kitchen that encompasses the central module, equipped with a microwave, refrigerator, sink, two-burner stove, and an impressive amount of storage space. The third module is the bedroom, which is large enough for a two-person bed. A small area between the bedroom and kitchen functions as a bathroom, including an optional shower with a 20 litre (5 gallon) freshwater capacity.

Beauer offers numerous options, not the least of which being heat and air conditioning for four-season operation. Heating options can be electric or gas, and larger tanks for fresh and waste water can be added. Solar panels, integrated steps, and bike racks are also listed as options, among others.

Beauer sells the 3XC as a complete vehicle with prices starting at €66,900 for a single cab van. That translates to approximately £55,800, though availability outside Europe isn't entirely clear. The company does state it can sell directly to US buyers, though we suspect that applies to trailers that wouldn't have the same import requirements as vehicles. That said, the Ford Transit and Mercedes Sprinter are listed among compatible vehicles. Questions regarding US sales can be sent to the company at