A top-quality campervan with a classic rear lounge layout that adds masses of extra storage in a rear boot but seems remarkably uncompromised elsewhere. Not cheap but definitely worth it.
Berths: 2 Travel seats: 2 Base vehicle: Fiat Ducato Gross weight: 3,500kg Payload: 500kg
It’s not a new, or unique, idea but you can certainly see the appeal. The back doors in this new campervan from Vantage offer no access to the living area, but they do open to reveal a large ‘boot’ space. It’s not as big as you’ll find in a fixed bed camper, but the Vantage Eos retains the rear lounge so beloved of British buyers – it’s just moved forward by about half a metre. And the capacity provided opens up many possibilities – folding bikes, mobility scooters, scuba diving or mountaineering gear, golf clubs, etc, have all been reasons to buy.
How big is it? Initially, 1.84m across, 400mm deep and 840mm high but then it extends further under the end of the lounge seating. Dealing with the loss in the cab area is easy because, although the Eos has that rear lounge, it also features swivel seats for when the rear bed is still made. And it comes with a neat little coffee table, too, while at this point it’s also worth noting that there’s enough rearward travel on the driver’s seat for even the tallest pilot.
The galley itself may not be big but it does incorporate an oven/grill and there’s an extra worktop flap at each end. And a cover for the sink, which also comes with a washing-up bowl. And cutlery can drip dry in the little wall-mounted receptacle above, before being stowed away in the top of four drawers that are just one indication of Vantage’s superior quality standards. A short test drive was enough to back up that top-notch reputation as there are no rattles in this motorhome. None!
The huge drawer under the oven will be perfect for your pans, while adjacent is a bin. Then there’s the carpet, and that’s before we get on to features like the twin leisure batteries and standard-fit 100W solar panel. Or the tripod base so that you can use either of the tables al fresco. That’s not to say that the Eos has it all, though. At least not without a trip to the options list that took this example to over £60k even without an engine upgrade or a Comfort-Matic gearbox. Pity there are no reading lights at the back, though.
That’s probably all you will criticise the end lounge for. Here’s a comfy place to put your feet up or dine. At night you can simply close the concertina blinds and remove the backrest cushions for near-instant single beds, or pull out the sturdy offside seat bases to create a huge double.
Nocturnal trips to the loo will take you to a bench cassette toilet and fixed corner basin, plus two mirrors and a useful wall cabinet. Robe hooks, loo roll holder, etc, are all provided and the basin feels much more substantial than most tip-up types but does encroach on showering space. There are cheaper alternatives but if you like the bling-free, built-to-last and designed-to-be-really-used approach, the Vantage still stands out as an exceptional van conversion. Long may that stay unchanged.
If you enjoyed this review, you can read the full version and more in the March 2017 issue of What Motorhome magazine.
You can get a digital version of this latest issue of What Motorhome magazine here.