Both sides, Marquis and its customers, appear to benefit from these exclusive dealer specials. For Marquis, this unique product helps its business stand out in the market – particularly if there is another Elddis dealer nearby. On the other hand, the customer gets a mid-market specification in a tourer that is at its core an entry-level, lightweight and affordable van. Everyone’s a winner.
Great kit for the price
It’s a lightweight family van
The living areas are spacious
The kitchen lacks workspace and storage
Space is tight in the washroom
The Marquis dealer network is best known for retailing motorhomes and has built a reputation for its dealer specials in particular. So when Marquis began selling caravans at its three largest branches in 2010, dealer special tourers were soon to follow.
Initially the dealership retailed Swift and Coachman vans but for the 2012 season a range of five Majestic models was launched in conjunction with Elddis, based on the entry-level Xplore range. However, Marquis has treated its Majestics to extras more often seen on mid-market tourers.
Standard features include alloy wheels, a stabiliser, external barbecue and 230V sockets, a spare wheel, loose lay carpets and a CD player. The graphics have also been freshened up.
We tested a six-berth Majestic 506 featuring a fixed triple-bunk layout, based on the Elddis Xplore 506 – is it spacious enough for lively children on a break? We put it to the test.
A mid-market spec in an entry-level, lightweight and affordable caravan – everyone’s a winner
Pitching & Setting-up
The Majestic sits on a BPW chassis, which was revised in 2011 and features a Winterhoff stabiliser, alloy wheels, a buttonless handbrake and a spare wheel with carrier as standard. Access to the steadies is made easy by metal guide channels, while the waste pipes, which are on the offside towards the rear, are also simple to reach.
The toilet locker is on the offside behind the axle and has a handy wheeled cassette tank. The fresh water point, at the front of the van, completes the offside fixtures.
Pale wood and light upholstery make the lounge feel bright and spacious. Its speckled grey-and-brown worktops are easy on the eye, as is the cappuccino-and-cream upholstery, although the light fabric isn’t very forgiving of mucky fingerprints. The dark grey drop-in carpets are a more sensible colour choice for this family van.
The centre chest is wide enough for a couple of people to dine at it comfortably, and has two drawers and a useful slide-out top. For four or more to dine up front, there is a larger table stowed in a dedicated cupboard on the offside end of the lounge. To spread out at meal and play times, the rear dinette is ideal.
Both front and rear lounges have TV aerial points and there are three 230V sockets, two in the front. A midi in lieu of a mini Heki rooflight in the front lounge is one of the upgrades on this dealer special. This adds to the light let in by the single front and two side windows. The rear also benefits from back and nearside windows and a mini Heki. To brighten the lounges after dark, there are two corner lamps and spotlights, plus a ceiling light directly in the front.
Trying to cook for a large family can be a particularly tricky task in many caravans, and that is certainly the case in the Majestic. Located in the middle on the nearside, the kitchen is short on space and storage. The worktops, which continue with the lightly speckled colour scheme, are at a premium with just a small area to the right of the circular sink.
Kit consists of a three-burner gas hob with a separate oven and grill, and a 115-litre Thetford fridge. A window above the sink and an overhead lamp provide the only illumination.
The offside washroom in this caravan has a well-thought-out design but space is tight, so it’s likely a family will only use it briefly for brushing teeth and night-time toilet runs.
In the washroom there is an electric-flush toilet, a good-size basin and a shower fixture. The mirror also doubles as a cabinet.
The front double bed measures 2m x 1.37m, is quick to set up and is comfy. The only complaint is that the slats are not on runners so they are prone to falling out.
At the back of the van, the nearside dinette turns into a generous single (1.81m x 0.7m), using the tabletop as a base. This rear bedroom is partitioned from the front lounge and is illuminated by a ceiling lamp, Heki rooflight and two windows.
The three offside fixed bunks have comfortable sprung mattresses and each has a lamp and window for reading at bedtime and lie-ins.
Storage varies throughout the Majestic, with the living areas providing plenty, while the kitchen and washroom lose out. The caravan’s lounge has six overhead lockers, as well as storage under both sofas and two drawers in the chest.
In the kitchen there are just two lockers (only one with racks), a narrow cupboard with a cutlery drawer and a pan cupboard beneath the cooker.
At the rear, there are four lockers, storage under both dinette seats and the two lower bunks can also be lifted when not in use. The dining area next to the fixed bunks has plenty of storage for toys.