Alex NewbySee other caravan reviews written by Alex Newby
More and more caravan manufacturers are adding models with fixed single beds and a rear full-width washroom to their catalogues, and the Conqueror 565 is Swift’s top-end version. It looks smart and is packed with practical features and equipment, including an Al-Ko Secure wheel lock, a 30-litre water tank for genuine all-weather touring, and a huge rooflight that brings tons of natural illumination to the front half of the caravan – and it all fits on a single-axle chassis.
Pitching and setting up
The control panel looks trickier to operate than it actually is. Like the Alde heating control panel, it's mounted high up, but shorter owners can reach it easily. The consumer unit and mains appliance controls are in a roof locker – great for easy access.
You could place a television on the centre chest, but it'll be too close to view comfortably. A better option is to mount the television on the extending arm at the foot of the nearside bed. This pulls out into the aisle so you can watch TV from the lounge, but it means that only smaller sets can be used. A word of warning – don't rest an elbow on the back of the pull-out chest, because it can tip-up.
The microwave is at a sensible height and the side-opening storage cupboards on either side of it are just about big enough for cups and plates. A cutlery drawer sits between the fridge and the cooker, with a tall locker underneath that houses pull-out wire baskets.
The sink has an integrated drainer, but this is tiny and of limited use for washing up after a meal. Lighting is excellent.
The separate shower cubicle has a flat floor and adequate bottle storage. The showerhead has a valve on it, so you can shut off the water without turning the mixer off, which is good for saving water.
The occasional double at the front of the van is hardly generous, but most couples will cope. There is an LED spotlamp in each corner of the bed and the centre chest provides a handy shelf for books or reading glasses. The bed is flat and easy to assemble, thanks to the bed slats sitting in runners.
Both rear bed boxes are huge and you can get into the nearside one from outside. At the front, only the nearside seat bed box has storage space – the offside one houses the Alde boiler, inboard water tank and various plumbing controls.
The Conqueror 565 is Swift’s luxury take on the twin single-bed layout with full-width rear washroom. Clever use of space, and plenty of practical kit, mean you get a very useable caravan on a single-axle chassis.
- The 565 cuts a contemporary dash, outside and in
- For 2012, all Conquerors have much-improved specification including the Al-Ko ATC stability system, plus a 10-year body warranty.
- Many areas feel as though they have been squeezed to get them into a single-axle caravan, particularly the washroom and the kitchen, which is short on workspace.