Love ’em or hate ’em, 8ft-wide caravans are here to stay – and one company that does the concept very well is Adria. Some people worry about the extra girth when it comes to towing, but in our experience that additional six inches makes a surprising difference to the living space, but less to its towability. In simple terms, we’re sold on the concept; but we’re still giving this near-two-tonne Adria Adora Tiber a very rigorous trial.
The new Tiber offers a happy medium between less-is-more Continental styling and more-is-more British caravan design.
It comes with everything the demanding caravanner could desire, but delivers it with a certain sleek minimalist style.
The fabrics are in a simple grey that’s practical and smart; the smooth wood-grain finish (with which metallic inserts) delivers a light and airy feel; and the hardwearing vinyl floor features a restrained linear pattern on grey, with the option to cover it with loose-fit carpets if you prefer.
The exterior is similarly understated, with grey sidewalls, simple blue graphics and tinted windows all around. These are particularly noticeable on the front panel, which arcs back dramatically in a generous expanse of window and (very large) sunroof.
At each side of the windows is a metallic grab handle, above which is a curvaceous ‘sidewall spoiler’ – a sort of aerodynamic blade. It looks good, and is perhaps the only element of the new Tiber where style rather outweighs practicality.
The back wall has slimline, contemporary lights, which are set into a windowless, damage-resistance ABS panel. The Adria branding here looks classy.
The Tiber’s entrance has a stable-door design, which is always handy for those touring with small children or pets. It has one of the smartest and most substantial uncoupling mechanisms on the market.
The long A-frame has plenty of space for a bike rack and can be stood on for cleaning that huge expanse of front window.
Awning users might not like the fact that the fridge vents are on the door side, but we wouldn’t consider it a major concern.
The Tiber has the Al-Ko Delta chassis design, with a single axle featuring shock absorbers for stable and safe towing. But the Tiber doesn’t come with Al-Ko ATS anti-snaking technology.
Large Adria caravans in the higher weight categories tend to feel very ‘planted’ on the road, but you must ensure you observe the 85% rule for novices, and 100% weight guidance for experienced tow car drivers.
In simple terms, you’ll need a large SUV or something like a BMW 5-series to pull the Tiber (and the latter can only pull the model with its 1800kg weightplating).
Our test caravan had an Al-Ko stabiliser. As we expected, the sizeable Tiber felt stable at high speed and surprisingly nimble in town or when manoeuvring (especially when our sat nav sent us into a tight and twisty historic town centre).
Pitch and set-up
The Tiber is a big old beast, so that final few metres of moving it into the perfect pitch position might require the assistance of the whole family.
However, once the handbrake is on, everything is straightforward. The steady handle is clipped neatly in the gas locker and the heavy-duty corner steadies wind down with ease. All of the ancillaries are on the off-side (away from the awning), so are easy to access.
A full awning on the Tiber is going to be huge and will likely require a bit of muscle to get it into the rail. For that reason, we’d probably opt for a good-sized porch awning instead. The Adria’s size and layout would make it an ideal option for seasonal and longer-term pitching, too.
The lounge is where you really see and feel the benefit of the Tiber’s additional width. Legroom between the sofas is impressive (around a metre), meaning four adults can relax here in the greatest comfort.
The Tiber provides a C-shaped seating arrangement, forgoing a ‘space-stealing’ central console to deliver a sizeable folding table – although the middle cushion has to be eased forward to set it up. The sofas are wide and comfortable, with good bolstering, and the entire area is bathed in daylight.
The dining table is stored a metre away in a slender cupboard next to the door. No gymnastics are required to extract it from under a bed.
The lighting options are manifold, but we particularly liked the subtle mood lighting emanating from behind the locker trims, giving an ambient glow for relaxed evenings in the caravan with a book or a movie. The option is a trio of ceiling-mounted spots, which pivot for versatility.
Window blinds with integral fly screens are standard fit, while subtly patterned, devoré fabric curtains complete the look.
The broad front windowsill offers a place for daytime storage or the addition of some domestic touches – ornaments, pictures or flowers – to soften the minimalist interior.
The vast sunroof lets light flood in, but only opens to 8-10cm, so its airflow and cooling properties are limited. However, for that you can rely on the five windows, so it should never be a problem.
The Tiber comes with six smart scatter cushions in aubergine, blue and green, and there are two armrest bolster cushions that match the sofas’ grey material
Just inside the door, there’s a handy shelf with a power socket and TV point. Above is a three-section TV mount. The van and Alde heating controls are above the door.
Given the size of this caravan, the kitchen is a compact unit, but it has everything the keen cook could want in terms of facilities, if not space. For major culinary productions, you’d be advised to use the folding table – there’s ample floorspace.
The large sink with swivel mixer tap and the Dometic three-burner hob are a one-piece design, which makes cleaning the hob an absolute doddle, as any spills will wipe straight into the sink.
The burners, which are different sizes, are well separated, so you could use all three at once. Mind you, they are all gas.
A Thetford Midi Prima MkIII duplex cooker sits below the work surface. The sizeable oven has just one shelf, but three height settings. Above is the grill, which is fitted with a small heat deflector to protect the control knobs.
A microwave is housed in one of the large overhead lockers, leaving one other locker for storing crockery.
Two drawers and a small cupboard are to be found under the sink. The top one has a cutlery tray, the second is ideal for pans, while the base cupboard is half-filled with drainage and gas pipes, so might just hold a dustpan and brush.
Opposite, you’ll find a large cutting board to go over the sink, creating more worktop space, although unfortunately, there is no folding extension here.
A slender, slide-out shelf unit is ideal for tins or packets of pasta and rice. The 142-litre, slimline fridge is opposite, and contains a 15-litre freezer compartment.
The facilities are part of the en-suite section that separates the end bedroom from the kitchen and lounge. The entire rear area can be closed off using the toilet door, which serves two purposes. The compact washroom contains a good-sized basin and swivel toilet, along with plenty of storage and a towel rail located directly above the Alde radiator.
On the opposite side of the corridor is the shower cubicle. It’s a good size, but the wheel arch does encroach, limiting foot space a little. In fact, the wheel arch boxing could act as a seat for anyone with mobility issues. The shower mechanicals look very stylish and there’s a further towel ring above another Alde radiator.
This van is ideally suited for two couples, and if one of them happens to play in the NBA, that’s not a problem: the front make-up bed is absolutely vast in both directions (partly thanks to there being no central console). Just bear in mind you might need a super-king duvet.
There’s room to top’n’tail smaller kids in the enormous space, while older ones might prefer to use the two settees as single beds.
The main fixed bed is a longitudinal island bed coming off the back wall. There is excellent space around it, so the occupant’s height isn’t going to be limited by any bulkhead wall. The mattress is comfortably firm, and there is some neat cubbyhole and shelf storage for watches, spectacles and phones. A simple, grey, padded headboard adds a touch of style.
At night the toilet is easily accessible for all, and can be separated off from either end by hinged and sliding doors.
The Tiber’s front gas locker is one of the biggest around. Inside is a very accessible spare wheel (easier than having to scramble around under the caravan), space for two gas bottles, and ample room for a child’s bicycle or a barbecue (for which there is an external gas point).
On the nearside, there’s also a sizeable waterproof locker, ideal for muddy boots, wetsuits or deflated dinghies.
Inside, the under sofa storage is average only. On the left, the exterior wet locker protrudes into the space, while on the right, half the room is taken up by the Alde heater. The best space is under the front part of the C-shaped sofa. Each side also has two large overhead lockers.
At the rear of the caravan, the underbed storage is huge, although, of course, you won’t want to be adding too much weight this far back in the interior.
Each rear bed occupant gets a sizeable wardrobe, with 35cm of hanging space, and good depth for garments up to around 100cm long. There are two further lockers located above the bed.
Kit and value
The Tiber has premium Alde wet heating, with a number of radiators. At this price point, and because it’s a single-axle, we’d have expected Al-Ko ATC anti-snaking tech as standard. The alloys with high-walled, commercial-spec tyres are impressive.
Extras include a directional TV aerial mounted on the roof, smart TV brackets and a stylish LED awning light.
The Tiber is extremely roomy, and the smart touches feel like those in a posh hotel. Confident towers won’t have problems with its size, bit if you do, it’s a candidate for seasonal pitching.
The winner of the best 4 berth caravan at the Practical Caravan Awards 2022, the Tiber was also shortlisted for the best caravan under £30000 and the best family caravan. As well as this, the TIber made it onto our list for the best caravans for 2022.
Depending on the van’s weight and the driver’s towing experience, for an 85% tow car weight at….
Safety and security
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Legroom between the sofas is impressive, at around a metre, meaning that four adults can relax there in the greatest comfort.
|Interior Length||6.19 m|
|Shipping Length||8.24 m|
|Awning Size||1077 cm|