Bailey's two-berth 2011 Unicorn Seville impresses Practical Caravan's expert reviewers with its styling and use of the Alu-tech caravan construction method

Overview

The 2011 Unicorn range is Bailey's third range of caravans to use the firm's unique Alu-Tech construction system. This sees the caravan built of five main structural components – two sides, a rear panel, floor and a one-piece roof and front panel. The whole structure is held together with adhesive and bolted joints.

The system has been around since late 2009 and while the looks divide opinion, the ten-year body warranty does not. The bold exterior graphics and white gas locker door soften the clean exterior appearance of other models.

In typical Bailey fashion, the 2011 Unicorn Seville has a heap of Al-Ko safety and security kit as standard. The Secure wheel lock, ATC system and side-lift jack are all included. Along with a stabiliser and button-free handbrake. The Tracker system completes the set of security kit and the combination of all this ensures the Unicorn will be one of the cheapest vans in its class to insure.

Pitching and setting up

The main 12V controls are grouped inside the door and within easy reach. The Alde heating controller is directly above it. Poor viewing angles of the Alde screen may make it tricky for shorter customers to use comfortably.

Lounge

The full-length bench seats are supremely comfortably, and come with shaped armrests at either end. The centre chest is standard.

Lighting is very good, with under-locker LED strips, four LED spotlights and 12V lights mounted in the locker corners. Roof-mounted lights complete the generous package. A large Heki rooflight over the lounge and large windows on all sides ensure that there is plenty of natural light too.

The deep-pile carpets are split into three sections, with parts for the lounge, kitchen and washroom.

An AVTEX television and TV aerial points at either end of the lounge ensure it is a comfortable and welcoming place. We think that a satellite connector should be included in this class of van, however.

Kitchen

Equipment levels in the kitchen are expectedly excellent. Separate oven and grill, four burner gas hob and a Daewoo digital control microwave (mounted below roof level) are great, while the large Dometic fridge is plenty big enough for a couple.

Storage in the kitchen area is not a problem. The provision of Alde heating means there is no convector fire front to accommodate and this means lots of cupboard space. It’s flexible storage too, with a combination of drawers and cupboards.

The smaller, shallower lockers over the kitchen worktop don’t accommodate a huge amount of crockery, but a drinks cabinet in the centre provides a nice touch of old-school glamour, even if the acrylic liner is very contemporary.

Lighting for the kitchen is pretty good. Four LED downlighters at roof level, two under the lockers and a roof-mounted light mean there is little to complain about. Extra daylight provided by a Mini-Heki in lieu of an Omnivent is welcome too.

Washroom

The move to a single shower cubicle rather than the impressive but greedy double unit means the Seville is practical and packed with storage.

Lighting is good, without resorting to floodlighting the space. LED downlighters add subtle but effective lighting. A separate light in the shower is nice to see and daylight through the Mini-Heki stops the dark wood from making it feel closed in.

Two wardrobes, drawers and shelves all combine to ensure that even the most pampered caravanner will find room for everything they need.

Just two gripes. We’d much prefer an opaque window. Yes it is high up, but privacy is priceless. And rivals fit a small, door-operated light inside the wardrobes. New owners may want to do the same, to make sorting though the contents easier.

Beds

Like the sister Pegasus range, the bed make-up is fabulously straight forward. Simply pull out the seat bases from either side, drop the cushions flat and you have a bed for the night. The seat cushions are very supportive but the large number of small cushions making up the bed may provoke fussier sleepers to buy a mattress topper.

Night-time lighting options are easily to hand, and there is plenty of space to stow a cuppa or a reading book, whichever side of the bed you end up in.

Storage

There really isn’t much to complain about. Storage throughout the Seville is plentiful and the biggest issue for many caravanners will be packing light enough, because all those inviting lockers, nooks and crannies are just waiting for you to store things in them.

Technical specs

Berth2
MiRO1304kg
Payload129kg
MTPLM1460kg
Interior length4.9m
Shipping length6.48m
Width2.28m
Height2.63m
Awning size968cm

Verdict

The Unicorn range is the first Alu-Tech van you could fall in love with. In two-berth Seville form, it combines traditional interior styling with cutting edge construction. Impressive.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Peerless equipment
  • Warm, traditional interior has broad appeal
  • Great value
  • Sensible weights

Cons

  • Some clumsy external detailing
  • Clear washroom window
  • No satellite TV point
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