If you’re planning to tour as a family, a five berth can ensure you have enough room and comfort for an enjoyable trip. However, knowing how to pick out the best family caravan is not always an easy proposition, with a wide range of tourers on the market. To give you a helping hand, we’re taking a look at two entry-level five berths – the Xplore 585 and the Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK.
Both will provide you with a budget-friendly base for touring but how do these two vans compare? Let’s find out…
The basic spec
- Berths: 5
- MTPLM: 1400kg
- MiRO: 1225kg
- Payload: 153kg
- Shipping length: 7.36m
- Interior length: 5.78m
- Berths: 5
- MTPLM: 1100kg
- MiRO: 947kg
- Payload: 153kg
- Shipping length: 5.93m
- Interior length: 4.02m
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Pitch and set up
The Xplore has a characterful exterior, thanks to the adorning graphics. It comes on an Al-Ko chassis, while the sides and roof are built with essentially the same SoLiD system used by other brands under the Erwin Hymer UK umbrella – you can find out more about these in our guide to the best caravan brands.
The CaraOne also comes on an Al-Ko chassis, and boasts AKS hitch stabiliser and alloy wheels. While it may not be the most stylish of caravans, we like that there are no longer ‘fish-scale’ aluminium sides, and the placing of grab handles at a good height contributes to a sturdy-feeling tourer.
The Xplore has a shipping length of 7.36m, compared to the Weinsberg tourer’s 5.93m shipping length. This extra length will become apparent inside, as it’s a caravan layout that includes a rear lounge.
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Lounge
Neither of these caravans have a sunroof.
However, we still think the 585 has a cheerful interior, thanks to the light Ashton cabinetry and Maluku upholstery. It’s also nicely lit, thanks to a front window and two roof lights, along with five LEDs and two spots. The settees should be able to seat six too.
Families will want a spacious interior, and the rear lounge will be ideal for children who want to have their own space – it comes with another TV socket (you’ll find one in the front lounge), while three spotlights provide evening light.
One thing we found with this was that due to the orient of the L-shaped settee, it’s sitting in line with the washroom door’s curve – as a result, it can feel like you’re queuing for the toilet.
You’ll find a more compact lounge on offer in the CaraOne – you also need to watch out for the overhead lockers, which, while a good size, could impact on the headroom on offer for taller people.
A midi-Heki lets light in, but we would have preferred a larger front window.
By the evening, you can rely on two spotlights and a ceiling light, while a mains plug sits on the offside, above the window.
Compared to the Xplore’s vibrant lounge, the CaraOne has more basic upholstery on offer, and there’s no TV aerial fitted either – you could get a smart TV as an option though.
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Kitchen
There’s a good amount of worktop on offer in the 585, thanks to an extension. It’s another nicely lit part of the caravan, but you do only get a three-burner gas hob, along with a combined oven and grill.
We did think the 133-litre two-way opening fridge was a good addition though, while you’ll find two mains sockets near the extension. A microwave is an optional £228 extra.
We found the Weinsberg’s kitchen to be decent, considering the size of it. While workspace is at a premium and there’s no extension on offer, you do get a Dometic fridge, three-burner gas hob and a combined oven/grill. There’s also decent storage provided in the lockers.
There’s no microwave fitted, but the tourer does come with a Bluuwater filter.
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Washroom
You have to step up and into the shower cubicle in the 585, where you’ll find the wheel arch juts in – there’s only a single drainage hole, but we liked the inclusion of a mirror outside the washroom door.
While you don’t get a towel ring or hooks, you do get a salad bowl-style basin, a toilet roll holder and a mug to store your toothbrushes.
In comparison, the CaraOne has a more compact washroom, with no separate shower cubicle – instead, the shower head comes out of the tap. However, we still thought it was a good space, with LED lighting, nice storage options and decent ventilation, thanks to a large window.
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Beds
The front settees are only 4ft 3in long in the 585, so would only be suitable as singles for smaller children. However, it’s not hard to make them into a double, thanks to some slide-out slats.
The rear beds are also simple to make up – a single mattress for the pull-out bunk will be the only extra cushioning that you need. The double below, which is made up with a platform, could be tight for taller teens.
The CaraOne comes with either twin or triple bunks at the rear – these would be well-suited for children. The triple bunk option (which was the model we tested and makes it a five berth) would mean there isn’t much headroom for the middle bunk, but there is a small rear window there.
In the front lounge, there is a double bed which is made up via a table – we’d say the settees are too short to be used as singles, but the double is a nice size.
Xplore 585 vs Weinsberg CaraOne 400 LK: Storage
If you want to be able to access the space beneath the nearside settee in the 585, you would either need to pay £81 as an optional extra for an external locker door. To access ether underseat area internally, you have to lift the slats – with the latter, the base cushions are heavy.
It’s also a little tricky to access the rear underseat areas, due to the bed platform, but you do get some space here.
Despite this, there are four overhead lockers and the wardrobe is a decent size for storing a family’s clothes, even though the foldaway table resides there when it’s not in use.
The kitchen also boasts good storage, including two overhead lockers and a sideboard, as well as a big pan locker.
In contrast, you may feel storage for five is a bit limited in the CaraOne – the wardrobe, for instance, would probably only do for a weekend trip for all five of you. There’s a large overhead locker at the front and the underseat storage is okay, but the side windows only have a shelf above them too.
Both of these budget-friendly vans are decent, well-built options. The Xplore’s bright interior is great, and it also comes with a rear lounge, which can provide you with some valuable extra space when you’re touring as a family.
However, this does mean you have to make the rear beds up each evening. In comparison, the Weinsberg option has no rear lounge but has fixed bunks instead – what would you prefer? Another consideration could be whether you want a separate shower cubicle in your washroom or not – the best caravan parks provide good facilities, so if you’re staying at one of these, it’s less likely to be an issue.
Overall though, these are two good tourers to consider, and will provide you with a great setting for making some amazing memories.
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