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Big likes for the Laika lounge

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Laika’s had a presence in the UK since the 80s, with a line-up of iconic A-classes and low-profile models

It’s only recently, though, that the company has started to offer campervans. It's the more upmarket Ecovip models that are available in the UK – we obviously like the finer things in life.

What’s more, the flagship of this line-up is something rather special and pretty unusual for a European brand as it has a very Brit-friendly rear lounge.

We first saw this model last year, but the big news for this year is that you can order this model with a pop-top, creating an extra two berths in the roof. What this does mean is that you can travel just the two of you with the roof down, but have space for the grandkids when needed, or maybe you want a family campervan which offers more space for daytime relaxing than a standard fixed bed camper.

 
Laika Ecovip 645
Laika Ecovip 645 kitchen

This pop-top has been designed by Laika’s parent company, Erwin Hymer Group, so it offers a bed with sprung support and the option to unzip the sides for panoramic views of your surroundings. The fact that it provides a bed measuring 2m by 1.35m (almost 6ft 7in by 4ft 5in) is equally impressive.

That said, if you want this purely as a two-berth you can order the Skyview skylight above the cab option, which makes the whole area feel incredibly spacious.

That roof bed is a generous size, but the rear lounge makes an even bigger bed, 1.95m across and 1.75m-1.95m long! So, you can sleep across or lengthways, but the easiest thing would be to use this area as twin singles, one slightly shorter than the other. All you need to do is pop the backrests on the floor or in the cab.

Usefully, the floor is raised in this area, creating a compartment below that will be perfect for your outdoor furniture. However, the seat bases drop all the way to the actual floor to maximise the space available here. Tie-down points on the raised floor allow you to secure bulky items, too.

Big windows on three sides make this area feel like a proper lounge, too, rather than just a tweaked version of a model with fixed single beds. And, because those sofas are lower than a bed would be, there’s absolutely no clashing of heads and lockers if you want to sit up with your morning coffee.

Laika Ecovip 645 lounge
Laika Ecovip 645 cab

The style is also classic Laika, blending dark striking woods with cream gloss panels, giving this a definitely luxurious feel. This is enhanced by the microfibre fabric trim on the ceiling that is also designed to reduce on-road rattles from furniture where it meets the bodywork.

Another noteworthy feature of this model is the table in the front lounge. By their very nature, these models have a more compact forward seating area, and a big fixed table can get in the way, both when travelling or for relaxing on the campsite. So the fact this this table can fold against the wall is very neat; however, it also folds in half so you can use it more as a small side table or a full-on dining surface.

If you want more payload, this 645 (and the two other Ecovip campers) can be ordered on the Heavy chassis, while habitation batteries have been moved from under the cab seat further back to help with axle load distribution – which is particularly vital if you opt for the pop-top apparently.

The graphics on the outside are matt black for the coming season, coordinated with the exterior accessories, while the Midi Heki now has a dark frame, too. In a neat design touch, the side mirrors proudly display the colours of the Italian flag.


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