Sprite – a name known to non-caravanners as well as seasoned aficionados – is 75 years young in 2023! Under Swift since 1994/5, the brand has become a prominent name for the modern caravanner.
The model names Alpine and Major have been used since the 1950s and are etched into many caravan owners’ memories.
The Sprite Alpine was the best-selling caravan in the UK in 1970-1971, and at the time, it seemed everybody had bought one at some point in their caravanning career. Pre-owned Sprites still sell well and many are made as dealer specials – in fact, the Sprite Super Quattro EB from 2020 even made it into our best used caravan guide.
Sprite’s founder, Sam Alper OBE, had wanted to make affordable vans with quality build, and to this day, the Sprite name stands for value far beyond these shores (many were exported and built under licence elsewhere).
The 2019 range came with such spec as DAB radio, Status TV aerial (check out our best caravan TV guide if you need a television for your tourer), a flyscreen on the door and a host of other goodies. With 10 caravan layouts available by then (including twin-axles) the choice is wide.
Model history of the Sprite Alpine
The Alpine name was originally introduced for 1958, and by the 1970s a number of two- and four-berth floorplans were available.
In the 2010s, the end-washroom two-berth Alpine 2 is perfect for couples, while for those after a side fixed bed, the four-berth Alpine 4 fits the bill.
For 2019, the Sprite range had the new Swift Command panel fitted, enabling the user to control various functions of the van from their mobile device. Other upgrades were also introduced, such as the new Thetford three-burner hob.
An AKS hitch stabiliser and alloys made their appearance, as did a microwave, and bike mounting brackets.
That same year, the worktops were changed to grey and the front chest redesigned with soft-close drawers. All in all, these were subtle but significant changes.
We found this smart Alpine 4 on at £17,995 (£400 more than the original price new!).
Finding an Alpine 4 from the 2019 model year wasn’t easy, and prices are holding firm. Other examples were around the same price, at £17,995 (dealer), and slightly less for a private sale. Here’s a guide for other models:
- Alpine 2 :£16,995-£17,495
- Major 4 SB/EB: £18,195-£19,195
- Major 6: £19,995-£20,495
- Major 6 TD: £20,195-£20,495
- Quattro EW: £21,495-£21,995
- Quattro FB: £21,495-£21,895
- Quattro DD: £20,995-£21,095
- Quattro EB: £20,995-£22,195
What to check for in a used Sprite Alpine 4
When you’re thinking of buying a used caravan, you should always carry out the appropriate checks. Things to look out for in a used Sprite Alpine 4 include:
- Scuffed alloy wheels
- Possible electrical problems
- Kitchen extension flap coming loose
- Any external damage to panels/mouldings
- Signs of sagging upholstery
- Loose hinges on front corner roof lockers
- Panel cracking at the rear
Alternative models to the Sprite Alpine 4 (2019)
Consider an Elddis Xplore 554 from 2017, with transverse bed and full-width rear washroom, and you’re likely to be paying £14,995 to £15,495. Or take a look at the Venus, another
well-equipped lightweight tourer; try the 570 from 2018, priced at £15,595 to £16,495.
Verdict on the Sprite Alpine 4 (2019)
The stylish Sprite range offers excellent value, decent build, and a variety of layouts. The storage space and spec levels are further strong points.
The Alpine 4 is a less popular model than the Alpine 2 (some folk aren’t too keen on a corner washroom), so finding one will not be as easy, but the front lounge is comfortable, if short, and the kitchen has a good worktop. Look out for dealer specials with extra kit!
Sprite Alpine 4 specifications
- Berths: 4
- MTPLM: 1284kg
- MiRO: 1094kg
- Payload: 190kg
- Internal length: 4.75m
- Width: 2.26m
Or you could try:
- Sterling Europa 545 (2011): this is a well-designed tourer with a comfortable interior.
- Buccaneer Schooner (2016): this single-axle six-berth is ideal for growing families.
- Elddis Avanté 576 (2015): it requires a large tow car, but is a superb caravan.
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