Phenomenal storage space, enough kitchen space, two seating areas, two wardrobes… The Major 6 is something of a Tardis, one might say. It’s also great value, even though you have to add £495 onto the price for the Diamond Pack, which gets you items including the microwave, alloy wheels, an AL-KO Secure wheel lock receiver and a radio. But it’s the brilliant, bright exterior and fabric colours that make the 2016 Major 6 a caravan to catch eyes.
The Sprite Major 6 is up among the most popular caravans for young families,. This iconic model gets a new look for 2016, and new features including brackets for a cycle rack.
The iconic lightweight Sprite range moves up a gear for 2016 with a new look and some new features.
The change you’ll notice first is that the single-piece front window, which has distinguished Sprites from all other Swift ranges, is replaced for 2016 by three windows. Sprite fans may say the panoramic window was preferable, simply because it let in so much light. And they'd be right. But, as we began our review of the six-berth Major 6, our first impression was that the triple window, with four curtains, creates enhanced cosiness and definitely brings Sprite up in leaps and bounds away from any shred of budget image. Yet these caravans are well priced for buyers looking to make their first new-caravan purchase, and the Major 6 in particular, at just 1479kg MTPLM, is a perfect choice for families looking for accommodation for six in a lightweight, reasonably compact length.
This model goes into 2016 with an unchanged layout; little wonder, considering its well-established popularity. It has two bunks in the nearside corner. You can turn the offside dining area into two more bunks. And the shower room, in the offside corner, contains a separate shower. What more could you need for family holiday?
Well. For 2016 you do get more. The Major 6 (in common with the other seven models in the range) has fixing points, on the rear panel, for a Thule cycle rack; it’s an option, at £215. There’s a new type of directional digital and analogue television aerial. All the lighting is now low-energy LED, which will be appreciated by buyers planning to use their caravan away from mains hook-ups.
Perhaps the biggest visual-impact news for 2016 is the Sprite range’s new colour scheme, with a zesty lime shade, teamed with green, in both the graphics and the fabrics. It’s bright, modern and beautifully co-ordinated with the plain seating and single-shade cushions. Is this the best-looking Sprite so far? We think so.
The Major 6 is surely high up among Britain’s best family caravan layouts, for practicality and also because it crams so much into its mere 5.83m metres of length. Take the separate shower for example. The corner location of the washroom may give you the impression there’s a shared shower arrangement, until you open the door of the compartment.
At 55cm x 75cm it’s far from the biggest shower in a caravan. But that’s not a criticism. It’s certainly big enough to have a good shower, and anyway, it’s likely that some, or all, of a family of six will choose to use caravan park showers, simply because, there, everyone can shower at once, so the family keeping-clean procedure occupies less of your day.
The 90cm x 70cm floor space forward of the shower is adequate, too. And full marks go to Swift for towel provision in the Major 6; there are three double hooks in the little room, so all six occupants can hang their towels.
A new feature for 2016 is the halo-design water-saving shower head, with an air inlet to increase flow rate, and a button to switch it on and off, so that your temperature setting is maintained when you turn off the water while you apply the shampoo.
The Major 6 is tailor-made for a young family. Kids love bunks and there are up to four here. The two cosiest are of course the fixed ones, nestling at the back of the caravan with the wardrobe to form a little barrier at the pillow end. And there’s more. Each bunk has two shelves, hiding behind the wardrobe. Anything put here is completely out of view from the rest of the caravan, so the kids won’t be accused of making the place look untidy! There’s a little circular light here, too. And curtains, of ample width, to track around each bunk.
The single bed which can be made up in the dining area is the same length as the bunks, at 1.8m, and is much wider, at 84cm (the fixed bunks are 57cm wide). The top bunk is 59cm wide.
The base of the bunk bed here rises from the wall and a long curtain provides privacy for the whole “bedroom”.
The lounge transforms into a bedroom by drawing out a central base of webbing-linked slats.
The settees have full-length hinge-down doors, making getting duvets out from here easy. Getting sleeping bags out from under the dining area is an easy task, too; the bases here hinge upwards. Even though you have to hold them up (there are no self-supporting hinges here) it’s a quick task.
The Major 6, though, has a storage secret. Under the lower rear bunk, there’s a really large storage area. And there are three ways of getting into it. There’s a drop-down hatch, plus an exterior hatch, or you can raise the whole bunk base. That’s useful if anything large is going in here. And there’s more. You can take off the mattress (and place it over the top one, out of the way) and raise the bed base to a vertical position against the wall, where straps and clips keep it there.
The Major 6 has two wardrobes. The rear one, alongside the bunks, gives you 68cm of hanging width, full hanging depth, two small side shelves and a 58cm-deep area beneath a shelf running the complete width of the wardrobe. We can’t help wondering why a second shelf isn’t here, though; that would double the amount of space for footwear, bearing in mind there are at least 24 shoes to accommodate in this caravan, and that’s assuming each person only brings two pairs on holiday!
But there’s more space, potentially for shoes, in the base of the forward wardrobe, between the lounge and the dining area – and an additional 56cm of hanging width. You’d never be short of places to put clothes in a Major 6!
The side dining table is 81cm wide; that’s almost wide enough for four small children to eat here. And it’s certainly wide enough for them to sit here for table-top playtime activities.
The freestanding table stows away conveniently in the wardrobe.
The settees are 1.57m long; that’s enough length for everyone to sit together in the lounge. It’s a remarkably spacious-feeling area, enhanced by its big forward roof light, plus one overhead. Best of all, the bright yellow and grey curtain fabric creates a stunning environment.
The Major 6’s kitchen surface is 93cm long and 64cm deep. There’s enough space here for making good meals to satisfy six holiday appetites. And the circular sink is plenty large enough, at 36cm in diameter, for the washing-up needs of six.
Storage space between the fridge and the oven is a 37cm-wide cabinet containing a shelf that’s 47cm long and 14cm wide. There are no other shelves, which seems a pity, because more could be stored here had an extra shelf been inserted. The same goes for the second kitchen cabinet, opposite the kitchen, beneath the forward wardrobe. That’s one big space, 48cm deep and 57cm wide.
You get an AL-KO hitch-head stabiliser as part of the Sprite Diamond Pack that’s automatically included and adds £495 to the price of the Major 6.
Sprites have a reputation for excellent road manners and, although our factory-location review of this caravan only allowed a short tow of this model, it behaved impeccably as we’d expected.