Purple Line Air OPUS: Review

By: John Willis, Photography by: John Willis


Grab a first class ticket to a million star view in the new Air OPUS with air-activated tent.

Our test destination was the beautiful rolling hills and valleys around Yea in Victoria, where the magnificent Central Highlands descend into forests and pastures to the glorious Goulburn River, which was flowing high and strong for irrigation season.

We ran the camper up, over and through a highly varied selection of terrain from hard corrugations to steep hillside tracks, over a rubbly quarry and up and down a series of mounds. Through it all the Air OPUS tracked comfortably and true with the confidence to go anywhere the 4WD traversed. The centre of balance is quite low, particularly if you fill both of the 80L stainless steel water tanks that are properly shrouded with alloy checkerplate. Even the batteries are mid-mounted under an internal cabinet, keeping the drawbar weight at a very acceptable 100kg (approx.) dependent on your load. There is the facility for a 9kg gas bottle and twin jerry can holders protected by a stone shield up front to further balance the trailer.

EXTERIOR

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The Air OPUS sits on a fully-welded 100x50x3mm RHS chassis and drawbar that has been galvanised and powder-coated for durability. The suspension is a strong, independent trailing-arm style with twin gas shockers and a coil spring either side. There’s even a locating lug for the optional Kojack jack, also made by Purple Line. All of the underside plumbing is neat and secure, although I did think the water tank outlets could do with solid elbows for added strength; a small criticism that company representatives Jason and Steve were all too happy to accept and fit as standard for the future.

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The Air OPUS rides on 235/75 R15 all terrain tyres with a set of attractive alloy wheels further enhancing its rugged, but quite modern demeanor. She’s fitted with 12in electric brakes and a separate handbrake, which are entirely suitable for the 1200kg Tare and 1800kg ATM that allow for a very suitable payload of 600kg. Fill the water tanks, jerry cans and gas bottle and you still have up to 400kg added capacity. Even though it’s not legally required, the Air OPUS has breakaway brakes for maximum safety.

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Out front on the drawbar is an articulating poly-block offroad coupling, a swing-up jockey wheel and an Anderson plug connection with regulator should you opt up for a solar panel for added charge (other than the towing vehicle). I was quite surprised to find that the tub has an aluminium frame with composite panel exterior adding strength, durability and also insulation. Purple Line offers the Air OPUS in orange, blue, grey or black and the finish quality and welding seems excellent. The total length of the trailer is 4800mm which is comparable to many other campers whether forward or rear-fold, however the spare wheel is mounted out back adding a further 500mm to the overall footprint, but not detracting from the recovery angle.

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Back outside, the electrical box also contains easy-to-read volt and amperage meters, a 40A circuit breaker, individual water tank indicators, individual isolator switches for both water tank pumps, and resettable circuit breakers on all switches including lights, 12V power, fridge and compressor. There are plenty of 12 and 240V plugs and USB ports in sensible positions spread around the camper including a dimmable light just inside the stairwell, annexe light and LED strip lights over two of the main arches inside the trailer.

INTERIOR

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As you step inside the camper your immediate attention is drawn to the feeling of space. There’s 5.8x1.9m of living area under the tent, and with headroom reaching 2.3m and clear view skylights, you will never feel cramped or enclosed even if you’re rained in for a period. The roof is so high that the skylight awning zips need tags to reach them! There’s a complete double bed compartment each end of the trailer, each with its own flyscreens, clear window and block-out curtains. These curtains close off the bedrooms from the main tent for a high level of insulation, and keep out the bugs, dust and dirt while you enjoy the alfresco living of the main tub.

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The camper we tested was the first prototype in the country, hence the inflatable annexe hadn’t yet arrived so keep an eye out for this in the future.

The canvas seems very good quality with plenty of windows, ventilation, and of course that ability to bring the outside in or inside out, with plenty of privacy when required.

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There is a large U-shaped lounge, which becomes a convertible dinette with a collapsible table transforming the seat cushions into yet another double bed, increasing the Air OPUS’ accommodation capacity up to six people. The upholstery is thick, luxurious and very comfortable and you can use the dinette easily without feeling like you have your knees around your ears. I would make the prediction that this trailer will become the social centre of the campsite when the sun goes down and the fire gets low.

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THE VERDICT

To say I was impressed with the overall Air OPUS package is an understatement. I was, however, a little concerned about the gutter seal where the two pivoting lids joined on top of the unit. Purple Line assured me that there is absolutely no leakage through the seal, and on further thinking even if it did it would only leak to the outside of the tent. The whole setup is entirely suited to single person assembly and even the tilting lids are relatively lightweight to lift due to suitable gas struts. If conservatively laden, Air OPUS is also capable of carrying a boat rack or up to 500kg load on the top panels.

Need I say more other than yes I’d buy one! I luv’d it Mr Purple Line, you have built it better than I ever imagined it!

Pros…

  • Easy assembly
  • Sensible array of features and options
  • Offroad capability and weights
  • Manufacturing quality
  • Price

Cons…

  • Elbow on water outlets could be stronger

SPECS

Trailer

  • Tare 1200kg
  • ATM 1800kg
  • Suspension Independent trailing arm with twin gas shocks and coil springs each side
  • Brakes 12in electric with breakaway system
  • Coupling Poly-block offroad
  • Chassis Full welded galvanised and powder-coated RHS
  • Drawbar 100x50x3mm A-frame
  • Body Aluminium insulated composite panel on an aluminium frame
  • Wheel/tyre 235/75 R15 All Terrain wheels and tyres
  • Style Alloy mags

Price as shown

$25,990

Check out the full review in issue #113 of Camper Trailer Australia magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration.