Bryony Symes
Staff Writer

See other caravan reviews written by Bryony Symes

An entry-level fixed bed with a usefully low MTPLM, read our Bailey Pursuit 430-4 review to find out if this couples-focused caravan ticks all the boxes

Overview

Polished chrome fixtures and fittings, and a sensitively designed look, have joined Bailey’s AluTech construction in a caravan that has everything you’d expect of this manufacturer’s attention to detail. What’s more, it is very reasonably priced at £13,440. 

The layout is ideal for couples, but shorter breaks with overnight guests can be accommodated, thanks to the make-up double in the lounge. Overall, though basic, it has all the kit you need for comfortable caravan holidays. And to see other Bailey caravans for sale, click here.

Pitching and setting up

At just 1229kg, this caravan is certainly light enough to be towed by a variety of cars, and the size isn’t at all daunting even for novice towers. However, it also means that in high winds the van tends to bounce around a little – but it’s nothing that taking it steady can’t fix.

The tourer we tested was fitted with the optional Premium Pack (£405). This includes an Al-Ko AKS 3004 stabiliser, a floor-mounted steel spare wheel and retainer, plus an exterior-door flyscreen, a microwave oven and a radio/CD/MP3 player.

This van also looks the part, with alloy wheels, a handy awning light and the optional opening sunroof.

Lounge

The Bailey Pursuit 430-4's comfortable lounge seating has enough space to easily seat four, with a flip-up occasional table mounted on the front wall for those occasions when you don’t want to drag the freestanding table from behind the wardrobe. The optional sunroof, available for £360, makes the lounge feel bright and welcoming, and all windows have insulating blinds as well as flyscreens.

The radio/CD/MP3 player that comes with the Premium Pack includes an iPod connection point and speakers in the front corners of the van.

Moreover, the 430-4 benefits from having five mains sockets – plenty for the essentials, including a TV, which gets dedicated points for 230V, 12V and the Status 550 directional aerial.

The ‘Spice’ furnishing theme can be swapped for the more popular ‘Amaro’, as used in the old Pegasus, as a £199 option.

Kitchen

Caravan chefs may not be pleased with the amount of work surface in this tourer. The sink and three-burner gas hob break up the space, leaving a narrow curved strip to put your utensils.

There is some compensation, though, in the shape of sink and hob covers, a large flip-up worktop extension on sprung hinges and some dresser space across the gangway.

A combined oven and grill, and a 103-litre fridge with a removable freezer compartment round out the standard equipment here. The 800W stainless-steel microwave that is part of the options pack is set at eye level, which is not ideal.

Washroom

Surprisingly for this size of caravan, the Bailey Pursuit 430-4's end washroom is very spacious and has plenty of cupboards and hooks to cope with four people’s toiletries.

A corner cupboard above the electric-flush toilet is a good use of space, and a welcome addition to the under-sink cupboard. The room would benefit from having a towel rail, as well as the toilet roll holder.

The shower is a good size, too, with a bifold door – a clever, space-saving trick. The long mirror is also a useful addition.

Beds

The fixed double bed has a very comfortable mattress and, even with the corner cut off, it is spacious enough for couples. Anyone much over 6ft may find it short, though – it measures 1.91m x 1.37m.

Shelves by the head of the bed are ideal for anything you want to keep within reach at night. Ample overhead storage lockers simplify keeping the van tidy.

Some will find it slightly awkward having to send guests through the rear bedroom to use the washroom at night, but this is a small price to pay to get a larger washroom.

The front lounge can be converted into a double bed (2.04m x 1.27m), with slats pulled out from beneath the coffee table and the seat cushions rearranged on top of the beech sprung bed boxes. Or, the two sofas can serve as single beds for children – the nearside one is 1.44m x 0.73m, while the offside single bed measures 1.55m x 0.73m. These bed boxes also provide extra storage, although the battery and heating systems take some space away from this.

Storage

The fixed bed provides a huge under-bed storage area, which also has external access through a hatch on the nearside of the caravan. This makes it easy to stow wet or muddy kit without the risk of trailing dirt through the caravan when you pack up at the end of your stay.

The bed base rises on gas struts, which takes the grunt out of lifting it. However, it clunks a little when replaced and you’ll want to watch your fingers as you return the bed to its position.

Some storage space has been sacrificed for the sake of the side gas locker; however, the savings made on noseweight by this change are invaluable.

Despite the loss of a cupboard, the Pursuit 430-4 has plenty of other options so that everything can be stored away safely. Nevertheless, the location of the dining table – towards the rear of the caravan – could prove troublesome, because it’s very heavy. Some people will find it difficult to carry the unit from its stowage space to the lounge at mealtimes.

Technical specs

Berth4
MiRO1036kg
Payload193kg
MTPLM1229kg
Interior length5.23m
Shipping length6.47m
Width2.23m
Awning size955cm

Verdict

So, what do we make of the Bailey Pursuit 430-4? It may work for some small families, but we think it is a caravan best-suited to couples.

The fixed bed and generous washroom are its strongest selling points. In addition, the lounge is no slouch in the living space stakes, especially considering the Bailey’s price and weight. The kitchen is where the compromises bite hardest. 

Conclusion

Pros

  • The lounge and washroom are spacious
  • There's plenty of storage
  • There is external access to the storage area under the fixed double bed

Cons

  • Some may find the fixed bed too short
  • Kitchen worktop space is lacking
  • The freestanding table is quite heavy and is stored towards the rear of the van
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