10/05/2019 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

Motorhome review: Benimar Tessoro 494 motorhome

248e97a7-0cae-4b57-9624-512dd62da759

Key Features

  • Model Year : 2019
  • Class : Low Profile Drop Down Bed
  • Base Vehicle : Ford Transit
  • Engine Size : 2.0TD
  • Maximum Weight (Kg) : 3500
  • Berths : 4
  • Layout : Island Bed

The Verdict

Spanish-built but with UK-friendly floorplan layouts, Benimar has gone a long way to making to making its motorhomes appealing to British buyers - and the 494, with its island bed, certainly deserves a closer look


Benimar Tessoro View more details about the manufacturer of this vehicle over in our manufacturers section.

AT A GLANCE

Base vehicle: Ford Transit Price from: £56,995 Berths: 4 Travel seats: 4 Length: 7.38m Width: 2.30m Height: 2.89m Gross Weight: 3,500kg Payload: 320kg

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION

Model Year
2019
Manufacturer
Benimar Tessoro
Class
Low Profile Drop Down Bed
Range
No Range
Base Vehicle
Ford Transit
Engine Size
2.0TD
Payload (kg)
320
Belted Seats
4
Maximum weight (kg)
3500
Price from (£)
56995
Length (m)
7.38
Width (m)
2.30
Height (m)
2.89
Berths
4
Main Layout
Island Bed
Price from (€)
Campervan Test Date

DETAILED REVIEW

Some continental motorhomes sold here are exactly as you’d see them across the Channel, bar the steering wheel being on the right. Others have increased spec, as we tend to want our motorhomes fully loaded with all the toys. But few go as far as Benimar.

These Spanish-built motorhomes, imported by Marquis, gain microwaves, better cookers and a list of kit that would usually see you developing RSI from ticking so many options on the order sheet. Then there’s the habitation door on the left, meaning a complete mirror image of the continental layout – most imported motorhomes retain their entrance on our offside.

The Tessoro range got its completely UK-friendly floorplans in 2018 and carries on pretty much unchanged this season, including the rare choice of a Ford Transit base vehicle. The well-appointed blue oval cab has automatic lights and wipers, a fast defrosting windscreen, cab air-conditioning, cruise control, a touchscreen DAB radio, sat-nav, reversing camera and alloy wheels. There’s a wide-tracked rear chassis, too, which combined with the 170bhp motor makes this a real driver’s choice.

The only options are a towbar (£1,350) and the torque converter-based automatic gearbox (£2,100) which is so much slicker than Fiat’s robotised Comfort-Matic.

The living area is comprehensively appointed, too, including rear speakers, removable carpets, a multi-position electric drop-down bed over the front lounge, iNet remote control for the heating (a gas/mains Truma Combi 6kW system), an extractor hood and a rooflight with fan, plus smoke and CO2 alarms. On the outside you’ll find a TV aerial, external shower and barbecue points, and rear corner steadies.

Better still, especially as some insurers have reported Fords being targeted by thieves, a Trackstar Leisure Category 6 tracker with a year’s subscription is included as standard, along with a year’s free insurance (subject to terms and conditions).

The Tessoro line-up numbers six models, with this island bed 494 being one of the largest at close to seven-and-a-half metres. It’s still a 3,500kg gross weight, though, so payload here is a limiting factor, at 320kg.

The end bedroom, of course, is the reason to select the 494 and there are the usual wardrobes on either side of a bed claiming dimensions of 1.90m by 1.39m. The bed slides back to create a sort of chaise longue-effect in the day, and to create more floor space for dressing. At the foot of the bed on the nearside is the toilet cubicle, behind a tambour door. As the new-look cassette loo here sits on a plinth you may want to check sitting comfort if you haven’t got long legs.

Opposite, the shower cubicle has a false floor over its shower tray when not in use, but there is no privacy screen between bed and shower. That may be an issue if the front drop-down bed (said to be the same 1.90 by 1.39m, although both beds narrow at the foot) is in use by friends or privacy-demanding teenagers.

Much of the rest is predictable stuff, from the L-shape of both lounge and kitchen to the fixed table and the overcab sunroof. Unusual, though, for a continental motorhome are the microwave (over the fridge/freezer) and a cooker with mains hotplate.

Rarer still, of course, is the Ford cab – only Roller Team and Chausson field Transit-based opponents. That’s a pity because the blue oval badge brings with it a more car-like cab environment, great Euro 6 engines and that superb automatic option.

 

If you found this motorhome review useful, every issue of What Motorhome is packed with similar information on new models. You can buy a digital back issue of What Motorhome here, or order a subscription to the print edition here.

Marquis Motorhomes (Sussex)


Eastbourne Road
Golden Cross
East Sussex
BN27 4AN
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes.

Marquis Motorhomes (Gloucestershire)

Mill Avon Holiday Park
Gloucester Road
Tewkesbury
Gloucestershire
GL20 5SW
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Base & habitation service & repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (Surrey)

Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Habitation service, finance.

Marquis Motorhomes (Devon)

Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Benivan, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Base & habitation service & repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (Dorset)

41-45
Old Wareham Road
Poole
Dorset
BH12 4QN
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Base & habitation service & repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (Lancashire)

Riversway Leisure Village
Chain Caul Road
Preston
Lancashire
PR2 2PD
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Benivan, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Adria, Caravelair, Coachman, Lunar caravans.

Marquis Motorhomes (Berkshire)


Oxford Road
Newbury
Berkshire
RG20 8RU
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Servicing & minor repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (Hampshire)


Winchester Road
Southampton
Hampshire
SO32 1HA
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Lunar, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Base & habitation service & repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (Northants)


The Causeway
Northampton
Northamptonshire
NN3 9EX
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Adria, Caravelair, Coachman, Lunar caravans.

Marquis Motorhomes (Durham)


Durham Road
Chester-le-Street
Co Durham
DH3 2QZ
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes.

Marquis Motorhomes (Suffolk)


Farthing Road
Ipswich
Suffolk
IP1 5AP
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
Adria, Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes. Base & habitation service & repairs.

Marquis Motorhomes (South Yorkshire)

2
Rotherham Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire
S25 3RF
http://www.marquisleisure.co.uk
sales@marquismotorhomes.co.uk
Auto-Sleepers, Auto-Trail, Benimar, Elddis, Lunar, Majestic, Mobilvetta, Randger new motorhomes.