12/08/2019 Share this review   Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Compass Casita 868 - caravan review

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Key Features

  • Model Year : 2020
  • Class : Twin Axle
  • Berths : 6
  • Internal Length (m) : 6.39
  • Shipping Length (m) : 8
  • MRO (kg) : 1532
  • MTPLM (kg) : 1711
  • Max Width (m) : 2.45

The Verdict

It’s not just wide, it has sleeping arrangements which offer amazing family versatility. A double bed with two fixed bunks alongside it seems an ideal arrangement for a family with two very young children.

AT A GLANCE

The Compass Casita 868 is the first British-made caravan to have a rear bedroom containing both a double bed and bunks.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION

Model Year
2020
Manufacturer
Compass
Class
Twin Axle
Range
Casita
Price From (£)
23999
Berths
6
Shipping Length (m)
8
MRO (kg)
1532
MTPLM (kg)
1711
Max Width (m)
2.45
External Height (m)
End Washroom
No
Island Double
No
Fixed Singles/Bunks
Yes
Triple Bunks
No
End Kitchen
No
Back & Front Dinette
No
Side Dinette
No
Caravan Test Date
Caravan Buyer Test Date

DETAILED REVIEW

This is the first British-made caravan to have a rear bedroom containing both a double bed and bunks.

The Compass Casita 868 is one of two new eight-foot-wide six-berth caravans introduced for 2020 by the Erwin Hymer Group in Britain. This particular layout is a first from a British manufacturer, with a rear bedroom containing both a double bed and two bunks.

Compass caravans are made in County Durham, at the factory that also makes the Elddis range of touring caravans. The other caravan of this layout launched for 2020 is the Elddis Avanté 868. Both 868 models have identical specification; the difference is in the styling.

Central shower and toilet areas

In both Compass and Elddis 868 models, a solid sliding door divides the bedroom from the shower cubicle and the toilet compartment which, together with the corridor between them, span the width of the caravan in the centre.

The shower is on the nearside and, in a separate room, the toilet and washbasin are on located on the offside. The hinged door forward of this compartment closes across the caravan to separate the entire bedroom and washing area from the kitchen and lounge.

The double bed and bunks bedroom layout is one which has only been made possible by the extra width of the caravan.

The 868, at 2.45m wide, is 19cm wider than standard-width Avanté caravans.

The lounge is long enough to make single beds or can be converted to a double bed.

New heating system

A new heating system made by Whale has arrived in both the Compass Casita and Elddis Avanté ranges for 2020. This is the Whale CompleteHeat system which, like the similar system fitted to the Erwin Hymer Group’s Xplore range for some years, is mounted under the floor.

The new system launched for 2020 is lighter than the original Whale blown-air system; the unit weighs 8.7kg compared with 11kg for the original unit. One reason for this is that the casing is plastic, rather than metal.

The new system has three electric settings: low, medium and high. The low setting is 0.75kW; The system can be used on a combination of electricity and gas; that option delivers 5.45kW. When the gas-electricity combination is used, warm-up time is increased by 40%; that figure is derived from Grade III cold chamber testing, in which caravans are taken from -15 degrees to +20 degrees.

Avanté and Casita caravans, which were formerly heated by the Truma system, now also have Whale’s water heater, which is mounted under the floor.

This model has the Dometic 145-litre fridge with removable freezer compartment.

Fabrics

Casita fabrics are pale fawns with near-white cushions that have a white, mauve and green twig-and-flower pattern. The Elddis version of the 868 has a subtle herringbone pattern and the four cushions have a pastel mauve-fawn hexagonal pattern outlined in paler fawn.

Verdict

The eight-foot-wide revolution continues apace for 2020. The Erwin Hymer Group was a front-runner in bringing the max-width concept into mid-price territory a few years ago and now extends its eight-foot portfolio with this new one.

It’s not just wide, it has sleeping arrangements which offer amazing family versatility. A double bed with two fixed bunks alongside it seems an ideal arrangement for a family with two very young children.

The lounge can be made into single beds or a double. Who sleeps where? Parents in the permanent double bed or in the one that makes up in the lounge… Children in the bunks and on single beds in the lounge… Versatility is the keynote of this layout.