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New 5 Berth Caravan - Coachman, Bailey Or?


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Hi all,


We're in the market for a new 5/6 berth van and for once we've got a bit of flexibility on budget. Our short list at present is:-


Coachman Amara 570/6

Bailey Olympus 540/5

Swift Callenger Sport

Lunar Quasar 556


We do tour quite a bit and our season to date has been between March and October but we think we'd stretch it more with a better van. We do tend to use serviced site but want the option of more basic sites. Equally it would be handy with kids occasionaly (and my good lady) to have the option of a decent shower.


We've seen the coachman and it is a lovely van with a nice separate rear dining area and two bunks, then a decent lounge. It really does ooze quality but is at the top end of our budget ALTHOUGH we have been offered what I think (without haggling at this point) is a good trade in which gets it to just over £13K OTR. The only thing that really irked me a little in the Coachman was the kitchen. It has a big cupboard below the sink but no pullout baskets or anything. It really felt unfinished. Equally the locker for crockery etc. didn't have as many inserts for plates etc, as our 10 year old Elddis. However the bathroom and rear area were great and as the kids are 3 and 8 the option of using the dinette area as a single bed is desirable (as is the option to separate the area off).


We haven't seen the Olympus yet but have seen the Ancona (which has one too many bunks for us, hence the olympus interest). I have to admit the Ancona really does have a nice open living area, lovely bathroom and great kitchen. The only really negatives on this is that the spec if obviously lower (but the price is about £2K plus lower as well) and the dinnette area is not separated off and there is no way to section off this area if it were used as a bed. Also I just hate hate that front locker (okay it could possibly grow on me) it feels so restrictive. ........do love though the really deep front shelf (well certainly on the Ancona).


The Swift Challenger sport is a new addition to our list as it looks like it might be somewhere close to the coachman. ...haven't seen it yet but it will be on our list at the NEC.


The lunar quasar is the odd one on the list as this has the true twin double lounge and means the kids have proper single beds which should last for years. It looks like a good model I just wonder whether the quality will be the same. Weight really isn't an issue for us as we've got a Kia Sorrento. It will be interesting to see what the spec is like We did ponder the 546 but too be honest we just don't need the third bunk.


If anyone owns any of the above (I know the Olympus and Sport are new) in particular the Coachman would be interested in your comments on our observations at the moment.


We'll be going with a long checklist to try and determine what the right one is for us. Have to admit we are also musing over whether we order early OR just wait to pick up end of next season. ...I suspect it will depend on how much the dealers want to do a deal. ....our chats with a couple so far seems to suggest they are desperate with at least a couple saying that even if we're interested in brands they don't specialise in they'll get them and do a deal.


Anyway would be really interested in any views.

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