The twin-axle 2011 Swift Conqueror offers a luxurious island bed and a rear washroom, so here's the verdict from Practical Caravan's expert reviewers

Overview

Twin-axle tourers are the pinnacle of touring comfort. Plenty of space gives the option for a luxurious caravan with minimal compromises. The problem is that usually that isn’t the case. A fixed bed usually means a small washroom. If you have end-washroom, the bed tends to have a cut-off and is only accessible from one side. The 2011 Swift Conqueror aims to deliver a no-compromise touring experience: the Holy Grail of an island bed with a rear washroom.

Pitching and setting up

For all the space-age styling, the Conqueror is a very conventional caravan in terms of setting up. The recessed awning rail is fine with regular awnings, the steadies and drains are in easy reach and there is nothing really to worry about.

As with all the new Conqueror models, electrical switchgear is installed in a roof locker inside the caravan, so crawling around on your hands and knees is no longer part of the setting up procedure.

The water system has an 30-litre inboard tank, but there is a separate water system hook-up if you’d like to use an external water container as well. Switching between the two is done from inside the caravan in the offside locker.

Lounge

There’s plenty of natural light in the front lounge thanks to the sunroof, but if it gets a bit fierce, the concertina blind stops any glare. The optional Impala stain-proof upholstery has a lovely tactile feel and adds a real touch of class to the front lounge.

As with a lot of fixed-bed caravans, seat space is adequate rather than particularly generous but the curved, supportive cushions mean it is easy to get comfortable. Directional LED spotlights in the corners of the lounge mean are smart and bright enough to read by. Subtle mood lighting adds a little glamour in the evening. Drop-down access to the underseat storage and roof lockers all around mean there is no shortage of space for stowing stuff. The most obvious television point is adjacent to the main door, but an aerial point behind the front chest means owners have options over where to place it.

Kitchen

The well-equipped centre kitchen in the Swift Conqueror 645 lacks nothing you need for catering in a caravan. As with a lot of modern tourers, food preparation space is at something of a premium, but storage is excellent. There are two cupboards under the sink, a drawer and two roof-level lockers, which are pretty generous on their own. Once you add the cupboard over the top of the huge fridge-freezer, a drawer opposite and a small sideboard area, it’s obvious that you won’t struggle to keep your utensils and groceries tidily hidden from view.

Washroom

The end-washroom in the 645 has a sliding door, which makes access easier. Once inside, the toilet is in the offside corner, with the washbasin in the centre of the back wall and the shower occupying the nearside corner.

Given the size of the van, the available space in the washroom is less than you might expect. That said, the space is well utilised and storage is excellent. There is a cupboard under the sink, another next to the shower and a double locker next to the sink. Shelves above the toilet complete the rosy storage picture.

Beds

The island fixed bed is shorter than a regular caravan fixed bed, but it should only trouble those who are more than six foot tall. A neat trick is that the bed shuffles back a few inches by day to improve access to the washroom by day. At night, the person on left of the bed can still get past, although it is a bit of squeeze.

The front double bed makes up quickly and easily, thanks in part to a new system which makes it impossible for the slats to drop out when you make it up.

Storage

There are no storage issues in this van, unless you count having too many places to stow stuff as a problem.

The kitchen and washroom are very well served but the bed area has very impressive storage options too. There are wardrobes either side of the bed, each with drawers underneath, meaning the storage is flexible as well as large.

The only thing that is a little lacking is externally accessed storage. There is a wet locker at the front but no access to the underbed area from the outside.

Technical specs

Berth4
MiRO1624kg
Payload161kg
MTPLM1825kg
Interior length6.27m
Shipping length7.99m
Width2.31m
Height2.62m
Awning size1065cm

Verdict

A sumptuous no-compromise touring option for those with cars that can tow it. It looks great and works well. The Swift Conqueror 645 would be a great choice for those planning to keep it set up on a seasonal pitch all year.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Very clever bed arrangement
  • Island bed and rear washroom make it a ‘no compromise’ tourer

Cons

  • A big, heavy caravan
  • Lacks windows on awning side
  • Taller caravanners must try the bed length for size
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