This week’s packed Practical Caravan TV show jumps straight in with a van review, as our Group Editor Alastair Clements checks out something new from Lunar caravans. The mid-market Lexon range has been revised for 2016, signalled by red graphics outside and an updated interior, where the Skyview rooflight and recessed LEDs ensure it’s a bright space, and the new, eye-catching, red and grey upholstery might be of the love-it-or-hate-it kind. Here we review the four-berth Lunar Lexon 570, which has a well-equipped offside kitchen opposite a large wardrobe and sideboard, plus a full-width end washroom, but the fixed twin single beds are one of this caravan’s real selling points. Both are 6’ 1” long, and each has a shelf, a reading light and a large window, so the occupants of both beds are very well looked after. It’s priced from £19,999 and you can see if it’s the van for you in our latest TV show.
You’ve five opportunities to catch this episode:
- 8pm on Monday 18 April 2016;
- 5pm on Wednesday 20 April;
- 7pm on Friday 22, Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 April.
So that’s when you need to tune into Practical Caravan TV on Showcase, which you’ll find on Sky 212 and Freeview 254 (for the latter you’ll need a smart TV), plus it’s being streamed live online.
The second review of this show sees the Coachman Laser 650 fall under the spotlight, which has a central washroom and a rear in-line island bed. Mildly revised for 2016, this twin-axle caravan costs over £26,500 and has an MTPLM of 1810kg, but if you have a big enough tow car, you get a lot for your money, including external mains and gas barbecue points, and hydraulic jacks. Thickly-bolstered sofas in the front parallel lounge create a lovely, domestic feel. Moving into the kitchen, there’s a huge, 140-litre tower fridge/freezer, great storage and ample worktop space. The aforementioned central washroom has a big, circular shower cubicle, a heated towel rail, a sink and vanity unit, a toilet and a linen basket, while the rear master bedroom has tonnes of storage and a 6’ 1”-long island bed. Take a look inside in our latest TV show.
From a large caravan we’re moving onto a surprisingly large tow car, as Practical Caravan’s Tow Car Editor David Motton reviews the brand-new Škoda Superb. Rear seat space is particularly impressive, which will be welcome on long drives when touring. It’s also impressive as a tow car, proving to be strong and stable, despite the wet and windy test conditions. In fact, this tow car very much lives up to its name. Be sure to see it for yourself by tuning in to Practical Caravan TV on Sky 212 or Freeview 254, or by watching live online.
After a quick break, we’ve another two caravan reviews, one from each end of the Swift line-up, starting with the snazzy Swift Conqueror 580. Featuring a transverse island bed layout, this is a smart and well-specced tourer. By using different materials, Swift has managed to create a neat distinction between the lounge and kitchen, but it really is about the master suite in this van. That retractable island bed is, however, only 6’-long when extended, so taller caravanners need to ensure it’s sufficiently large, but the excellent vanity unit and plentiful storage do not disappoint. Find out more in our TV show.
Next we’re hitting the road to visit Bath Chew Valley Caravan Park one of our Top 100 Sites Guide 2016 finalists. Open all year round and strictly adults only, this attractively landscaped, 45-pitch campsite has luxury individual washrooms, a dedicated dog walking area and hardstanding pitches, while the helpful site owners will happily tow your van onto your pitch for you. It’s well placed if you want to visit Bath, Bristol, Wells or Cheddar Gorge, so next time you head to Somerset, maybe consider staying here.
Finally, as promised, our Group Editor is looking round a more wallet-friendly offering from the Swift Group, the Sprite Freedom FB. Designed to appeal to families on a budget, this twin-axle six-berth costs £15,820. From the moment you step aboard, it is clear this is a no-frills caravan – but then you’re not paying for kit, you’re paying for space. You get a massive front lounge which easily seats six, and a very generously-sized kitchen with a dinette opposite. The kitchen does without a microwave, there’s only a three-burner gas hob and there’s no oven, just a grill, but there’s a lot of worktop and storage space. And at night time the dinette can be converted into bunks and there’s a make-up double (or two singles) in the lounge, plus a good-sized fixed double beyond the kitchen.
So that’s it for another week. Be sure to watch Practical Caravan TV on Sky 212, Freeview 254 or live online, and we hope you enjoy the show!
It is clear this is a no-frills caravan – but then you’re not paying for kit, you’re paying for space