Rory WhiteSee other caravan reviews written by Rory White
You won't find many luxury four-berth tourers on single axles that also have fixed beds and corner washrooms, but it's a layout that's popular with couples looking for a little extra space. Coachman will be hoping the VIP's upmarket character can create buyers out of those lured in by the firm's reputation and competitive pricing.
Pitching and setting up
Storage space in the front locker is generous. There's room for two gas bottles plus a good deal more, and the single gas strut holding the lid works well. Satellite and aerial inputs are sited on the offside.
Watching TV is easy in the VIP thanks to mains, aerial and satellite points on the offside sofa base and at the foot of the bed. The central chest has a flip-over table-top extension and there's are plenty of spotlights to bolster the work of the central Heki rooflight. A CD player and radio with MP3 connection is standard.
It's reassuring to have 107 litres' worth of space in your fridge, as is having a separate oven and grill. There's a four-burner hob with extractor fan, too, but no electric hotplate.
There's plenty of room in the deep cupboard beside the fridge, but that's about it. At head level there’s a locker with wire racks for wine and crockery, and to the left-hand side of this are two shelves that are handy on site. Below these the tea-towel rail is a nice touch, but we would still expect more storage area for provisions in a van of this price. The drawer below the sink is handy but the cutlery tray is too small, so it jiggles around. It does, however, mean you can store larger utensils alongside, even if they don’t fit in the tray itself.
We wouldn't describe the washroom as spacious, but neither is it cramped. There's a swivel-bowl, electric-flush toilet, and plenty of shelves for your toiletries.
The VIP’s front dinette converts into a double bed with slats made of soft wood that slide out from the central chest. There’s nothing wrong with this, but it does mean the bed is rather fiddly to make up. We'd have preferred something a little more substantial.
For clothes storage, the Coachman provides a giant wardrobe beside the entrance. It also boasts a few neat ideas, including the elasticated storage pocket on the nearside sofa and the bin built into the main door.
The Coachman is a fine van whose layout fulfils all of its promise. It has a comfortable lounge, great levels of storage and is lighter and more manoeuvrable than many rivals. But the levels of specification aren't that generous, and build quality doesn't always match Coachman's usually-high standards. It is, though, good value for money and would be a rewarding caravan to own.
- Airy, comfortable lounge
- Abundant clothes storage
- Comparatively low weight.
- Ineffective fabric door to bedroom area
- Softwood slats
- Low payload limits carrying capacity.