SoLiD sound for sleeping
Is it the single front window that gives the game away? Or the windowless door? The steel wheels? Minimalist graphics? Whatever. Elddis prices to please with its Xplore caravan range, and this newcomer sits right in the middle of the five-model line-up.
The floorplan is in fact a strong seller in other Elddis ranges, so there’s no excuse for not reproducing it here in its “budget” brand.
It’s a four-berth caravan, with a transverse island bed beyond the axle and a washroom across the back, with a shortened front lounge that can be made into a second bed, also a transverse double.
The main double is extendable by some 40cm, great for access through to the washroom, but going out to some 1.90m will appeal to many. There’s a mini wardrobe between it and the washroom, with a larger wardrobe the other side of the bed, opposite the kitchen. A pleated divider offers privacy when needed.
The kitchen keeps things straightforward, with a black sink and matching three-ring gas hob, plus a Thetford Duplex oven/grill. The Dometic fridge has a removable freezer box, so its 110-litres can be all-larder if you prefer. There’s a good degree of permanent worktop, but an extension would have made things even better.
It’s a roomy washroom, but it’s also a tad gloomy, lacking the extra light (and ventilation) that a window would provide. Nevertheless, the shower cubicle is plastic-lined beyond its folding doors, there’s a fixed basin atop a cupboard unit, and – with the swivel-bowl toilet set on the left wall, there’s still a modicum of dressing area.
Despite its budget billing, the Xplore 544 is not totally devoid of kit. A TV aerial is standard, as are LED awning light, Whale eight-litre water heater, chrome mixer taps, external hatch to the underbed storage area, LED lighting and more.
Like all Elddis-produced leisure vehicles, Xplore caravans benefit from the SoLiD bonded bodywork construction, with protective GRP underskin. Sides are one-piece aluminium. It’s all commendably light, however, at a maximum of just 1,335kg, with a no-cost upgrade to 1,350kg should your car be capable.
As a budget model, the Xplore is short of a lot of the fripperies. You might, however, want to go for the SE Pack which adds some fairly essential safety kit – Al-Ko AKS stabiliser, alloy wheels, a steel spare, CD player with MP3 connectivity and a receiver for an axle wheel lock. With regards to the receiver if you then pay a little bit more for the axle wheel lock it could lead to a healthy caravan insurance premium discount.
Chances are, you’ll pay some £16,500 for your Xplore 554, specc’d up the SE way. It still sounds like a great bargain, though, which should have you sleeping soundly at night.
Verdict: Well-priced and light, with all the appeal of a transverse island bed/end washroom set-up
Plus: Popular layout in a lower-cost setting
Minus: Best budget for the SE Pack
In-a-nutshell: Priced up for a family bargain
There’s more information on the Xplore range on the Elddis website. To find out more about insuring this or your current caravan visit our caravan insurance discounts page
Alternatives: Sprite Major 4 SB, Venus 570/4
Xplore 554 factfile
|Dimensions||6.38m L, 2.18m W, 2.65m H|
|MTPLM||1,335kg (1,350kg upgrade)|
|RRP||from £16,094 on the road|
|Safety & security||CRiS security, smoke alarm, carbon monoxide detector|
|Key options||SE Pack (£440), alternative upholsteries (£260), Al-Ko Secure wheel lock (£230), Fiamma bike rack (£350), tracker system with first year subscription (£280), additional shelving pack (£40), alarm with PIR and leg sensors (£300), external gas point (£100), wraparound front seating (£210), additional 230V socket (£66), Al-Ko ATC (£425), Omnivent rooflight (£202) .|
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Note: All details correct at time of publication but may be subject to change.
*Caravan insurance cost based on Elddis Xplore 554 caravan retailing at £16,094 fitted with hitchlock and optional axle wheel lock. Kept on drive at HX4 0BE. Caravanners over 30 years old, claim free for 3 years and a member of a caravanning club. £100 excess. 180 days European cover and up to £75 per day for up to 15 days emergency accommodation cover included. Legal expenses cover, extended European cover and other emergency accommodation expenses cover options are available at extra cost. Quote includes 10% online discount and 10% Insurance Premium Tax and is correct as of 19.04.17.