To be honest, coming to caravan shows to see what’s new can be a little so, so on occasions – quite often I see much of the same in caravan after caravan, brand after brand. How many different ways can you fit a bed, small kitchen and bathroom in a 17- 22-foot long box, after all? So it’s nice to be surprised every once in a while.
Searle’s RV Centre from Bundaberg (notable for its pretty awesome vintage caravan museum on the yard) is showing off a range of Willow RV caravans at the Queensland Caravan, Camping, 4WDing and Touring Supershow, and they’re quite innovative inside.
Two models caught my eye. The first was the Conifer 5516, a family bunk van, which makes the most of what space it has by fitting an east-west double bed up front (rather than an island bed, which require more length in the van), with the bunks down the back, running along the side and opposite the ensuite. Nothing is particularly new about that concept, but Willow has done it elegantly enough that it looks distinct from any other vans at the show.
The Willow RV Conifer 5516 has a tare weight of 2180kg and an ATM of 2800kg. It’s a 19-foot van, so not too daunting a proposition for the first time-tower. It’s constructed using single piece laminate, composite walls, and none of the wiring is run through the walls, so its Willow says it gives easy access for maintenance. It is listed with a price of $64,106
The second van was the Willow RV Conifer 660, which is a 21-foot, single bed van. Again, nothing too spectacularly different, except that the beds become day beds when you raise half of the bed like you might in hospital, or at the poolside bar (you can do your own imagining of where you are).
The kitchen is also quite nice, with a great little shelf and alcove to keep the items you use daily close at hand. The interior and colour choices were also quite nice, giving the van a homey, but not overdone fell to it.
The Conifer 660 has a tare weight of 2236kg and ATM of 2750kg. It includes fully insulated walls and roof, AL-KO independent suspension, a fully gal chassis, 120-watt solar panel and an air con. It’ll set you back $67,579.
Willow RV is still one of the newer manufacturers on the scene, but it’s distinguished itself early by not setting up in Campbellfield, building composite caravans, and its owners have a history at the top of Jurgens and I’m told, formerly established Jayco’s motorhome manufacturing in Australia. Before that they’d been producing caravans in the UK.
Worth a good look.
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