Choose a Motorhome: Our Story
We’ve got to choose a motorhome…………
So, we made the decision. We are going to Europe in a motorhome, well a camper van or so we thought. This was much to the derision of family and friends, who could not believe that we would be able to survive in a motorhome. Given mine and Juno’s tendencies as princesses and Greg’s tendency towards 4* and 5* hotels!
Rent or Buy
Now the second decision on our “chose a motorhome” journey: rent or buy……on discovering that our time in Europe = £12,000 in rentals, we opted to buy figuring that depreciation would be less than that.
New or Used
Third decision was used or new and in the end my years of financial risk assessment (in my treasury job) finally found a real life value as I thought that given the waiting list for new vehicles they must hold their value well, so we were convinced.. new!
Time to Choose a Motorhome
Now…what sort of van…
The camper van route appealed to our inner, albeit well hidden, cool surfer side so we stated looking. The iconic VW camper was ruled out pretty early on as we realised that it was just too small to live in for 3 1/2 months.
We moved up to a van conversion, still cool in our heads but bigger than the traditional VW camper. The first conversion we liked was a Westfalia Columbia, so off we went to Lowdhams in Nottingham to see one. As Greg, Juno and I stood in the van, we realised that we really may not be able to survive nearly four months in a space that small. We continued to look around at various motorhome and camper van sales places.
Ok, Really Choose a Motorhome Now
We found Lowdhams to be very helpful (edit in January 2017, Lowdhams are NOT helpful with after sales service) with a great range of new and used motorhomes / camper vans. After going into a few it was clear that a much larger motorhome was the way forward and we accepted our fate.
Britain vs Germany
German-made came out top verses the British varieties (sorry Britain!), and we narrowed it down to Knaus and Hymer. Interestingly (on the basis that you care anything about motorhomes at all, which isn’t necessarily a given) British made motorhomes tend to have full/normal ovens, and more “lounge” space. This is because the assumption, probably fairly, is that motorhoming in the UK will likely involve much more sitting inside whilst watching the rain spill down on the windows.
Choose a Motorhome Winner
After some deliberation our priorities became clear, it was important for us to have a fixed bed as we did not want to have to make up a bed every night for 3 1/2 months. Lowdhams were doing a 50th anniversary special on a Knaus Sun Ti 650 MF so that had a lot of extras thrown in, and to be honest I fell in love with the lovely (and arguably completely unnecessary) LED lighting and kit that it came with, so with a bit of negotiation we got one on order.
The Knaus Sun Ti 650 MF, has a fixed French bed at the back of the van, with a shower and toilet cubicle, then moving towards the front, has a large fridge, small freezer and oven, a three ring gas hob and small sink. There is then a table with sofas, which can be converted into another double bed. The cab is a Fiat Ducato base with pilot seats that swivel around so that you can watch the in built television.
One of the key selling points of the Knaus Sun Ti is that it has top of the range heating and installation, which led us to add skiing to our itinerary!
And so, Knigel (the name we chose) was ordered…..
Are you about choose a motorhome? Do you have any questions or comments on our experience, do let us know in the comments below.