Rory White

See other caravan reviews written by Rory White

It seems that six-berth, fixed-bed tourers are growing in popularity, thanks to the combination of convenience and space that they can offer families. Bailey has always been among those quick to respond to such trends and its current offering brings the marque's experience and comprehensive dealer network to the fixed-bed fray.

Pitching and setting up

A good-sized front locker with support struts and space for two gas bottles helps make setting up straightforward, as do the well-placed corner steadies and waste outlet point.

As a twin-axle tourer, the Bailey won't be as easy to manoeuvre on site as a single-axle van, but at least there are receivers for Al-Ko Secure wheel locks.

Among the little details that aid usability is external access to the storage area under the fixed bed. This space has a plastic tray and drain making it an ideal short-term option for storing wet items. Moreover, Bailey has introduced alloy wheels as standard.

Lounge

Large sofas provide plenty of room for six, even though the seats are sharing lounge space with a spacious central chest.

What's more, the free-standing table is easily large enough for six when joined to the chest’s extension, although, slightly irritatingly, the table sits lower and is narrower than the extension.

During the day, the lounge is flooded with light from the one-piece front window and Heki 2 tilting rooflight. Once the sun sets, there are plenty of options for lighting thanks to the front corner lights, adjustable spotlights and ceiling lights. We particularly like the four downlights around the sunroof.

Kitchen

The specification in the kitchen is very good for a van in this price bracket. It includes a reasonably large fridge, a four-burner hob and a separate oven and grill. There's also a removable drainer. Worktop space is fair, bolstered by a fold-down worktop extension over the fixed bed. If small kids can climb onto the bed, you’ll need to be careful what you place here.

Storage is taken care of by three overhead lockers with built-in plate and cup racks, plus shelves, and three cupboards under the ovens for pots and pans. You also get two cupboards with a cutlery drawer and wire racks.

Washroom

In this floorplan, the rear-corner washroom is compact. This makes it fine for brushing your teeth and night-time toilet trips, but not for getting everybody in the family showered in the morning.

The basin is outside the washroom proper and includes a mirror lit by spotlights. Inside, there's a swivel toilet, a curtain to separate the toilet from the shower, a small sunroof and a shelf above the toilet so you can get the loo roll out of the way of any splashes from the shower.

One niggle: the light switch is up on the light itself, meaning little ones will need Mum or Dad to turn the light on.

Beds

As is usual in a six-berth of this sort, the fixed double is at the rear, the front seats convert to a double bed, and the side dinette becomes two bunks.

The Bailey has a great combination of lockers, cubby holes and two small corner shelves around the fixed bed for a versatile mix of storage options. For privacy, a fabric folding door separates the fixed bed and washroom from the rest of the van.

The front lounge turns easily into a double bed, supported by slats. Six-footers will have plenty of room, and the sofas can be used as two singles – important for families with older children. Assembling the bunks is also trouble-free, the Bailey using the table as the base for the lower bunk, and providing a guard rail for the top bunk, a ladder and a privacy curtain.

The dinette cushions fold out to form the bunk mattresses. It's a quick, easy operation to perform, but the cushions don't fit quite right on the lower bunk.

Storage

Storage is especially important for a van such as the Ranger, because large families will need a lot of space for clothes, food and holiday equipment.

A large storage locker under the front sofas gets the Bailey off to a good start in this section, and the bed boxes have slatted tops for easy access. Overhead storage, in the shape of lockers with shelves, is provided in abundance too, and there are plenty of cubby holes for smaller items.

The side dinette also provides valuable storage, with space under and above the seats. The overhead lockers are a great place to store the kids’ clothes, and are near enough to the kitchen to double as extra kitchen storage.

There is a large storage area under the fixed bed, and the space can be accessed externally. The wet-tray gives this feature added versatility.

A modest-sized wardrobe, deep enough for standard coat hangers but not full-length, completes the picture.

Technical specs

Berth6
MiRO1281kg
Payload259kg
MTPLM1540kg
Interior length6.29m
Shipping length7.89m
Width2.19m
Height2.71m
Awning size1088cm

Verdict

This is a well-built van that has all the basic requirements for a large family. It's good value for money, too.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Wet tray under fixed bed
  • Large lounge sunroof.

Cons

  • Low-spec washroom
  • Poorly fitting bunk mattress.
Share with friends

Follow us on

Explore the range

Recently added caravans for sale

Most recent caravan reviews

The Practical Caravan Swift Elegance 530 review – 1 - Its 1661kg MTPLM means the 2017 Swift Elegance 530 isn't light, but it's also heavy on luxury which ups its appeal (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Elddis Crusader Zephyr review – 1 - The exterior colour is called 'Champagne', but it is really a heathery brown, differentiating it from the blue of its Compass Camino 660 sister van (© Peter Baber/Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Lunar Lexon 590 review – 1 - Flush-fitting windows, the sunroof, alloy wheels and the cantilever-action gas locker door all add a touch of class to the 590 (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Sprite Quattro DD review – 1 - This twin-axle from the 2017 range of Sprite caravans has an MTPLM of 1624kg (© Andy Jenkinson/Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Bailey Pursuit 560-5 review – 1 - The single front window may look budget-style to some, but we like the uncluttered view it provides from inside the van (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Compass Capiro 550 review – 1 - The new-for-2017 Compass Capiro 550 has a 1467kg MTPLM (© Practical Caravan)