El Cargo

The concept

The El Cargo is a pick-up truck equipped with a special cargo box that can raise and reveal a second hidden floor for extra storage and added security for your goods.

The Background

I’ve had pickup trucks in the past and I plan on buying one again in 2016. I wish it was possible to double the flat bed space. Most of the time you carry stuff that is not so high so it could either remain hidden, locked and protected under a top floor. That’s the basic idea behind the El Cargo. (Of course the name was inspired by the iconic El Camino from Chevy)

How it works

The idea is simple; create a system where you have two floors stacked on each other. The top floor could be raised by a hydraulic, electric or pneumatic system. Instead of pistons it could also use a scissor lift. The lifting mechanism should be determined by the engineers working on each vehicle.

The top platform could be designed as a ribbed surface, a shallow box or a deep box (shown). The box type could be chosen as a option when buying the vehicle. For my part, I would opt for a design where I can store grocery items in the bottom section (first floor) and attach larger stuff like bikes or kayaks on the second floor. Of course there would be hooks around both boxes to secure your items with bungee cords or tie down ropes. There could even be steps built in the cab to climb on the upper platform. In normal operation, the top box sits flush with the bed of the pick-up.

One additional interesting option would be to cool down the hidden compartment. A small air conditioning system could chill the air inside the lower ‘insulated’ cargo section. This a/c could run on batteries for an hour and use the sun to reduce power drainage. This definitely would be an optional kit so you could buy your truck without it and save money if you don’t need it.

What it’s used for

The El Cargo was created to resolve a minor hassle, which is having to pile up stuff in your pickup on top of each other like groceries. Adding a second lift floor would fix that problem. You could also use that second floor to hide items under it or attach stuff over it effectively doubling your floor space.

The Designer

The El Cargo concept was developed in collaboration with Jan Bujnak, an Industrial Designer from the Slovak Republic. Bujnak graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislavia and works as a Freelance designer. Bujnak has also produced the concept images for Biora emotion sensing bike and the Pegasi propane car.