Four-door and more
Wow! And this is a wow. Four individual proper travel seats. Two electrically operated drop-down double beds. Two roomy daytime seating areas, including a generous rear U-shaped lounge. Garage storage zone. Maximum weight 3,500kg. Decent payload. And it’s all just under 7.5m in length!
Hello to the Chausson Welcome 711 Travel Line, the latest in a long line of vehicles from the French manufacturer that isn’t afraid to push boundaries. Apart from pricing where, despite the introduction above, this Chausson starts at a relatively reasonable sub-£55,000.
The only non-surprise is it’s based on Fiat’s Ducato – well, it is the base vehicle of choice for as much as three-quarters of the coachbuilt motorhomes produced throughout the whole of Europe.
Here, the lower-level, wider Camper chassis is deployed, with Chausson adding a GRP-clad coachbuilt body that includes proper doors on each side for the rear seat passengers – windows that open for travel would be a boon – as well as three-way access to the garage.
Step inside and, if you’re not au fait with Chausson, you’re looking at a floorplan like no other. There are four individual seats up front for the forward lounge area, washroom and kitchen facilities are mid-‘van, with a roomy rear lounge.
The latter includes two large storage units – the nearside is a wardrobe, the offside is shelved – as well as overhead lockers across the back. The circular, fixed pedestal-leg table for here is large and sturdy, but you can’t help wondering if a free-standing unit would be preferable. Ditto for the front lounge, where there’s a smaller pedestal table. A flatscreen TV holder extends out for viewing from either seating area (although not both at the same time, of course).
In the kitchen, there’s a Thetford Triplex cooker (two gas rings, one electric hotplate) with a combined oven and grill. A circular sink next to it means there’s some worktop to the right of the hob, although the loose glass cover will need some careful storage before you set out on your travels. Storage is otherwise good.
Drawers are soft-close. Lockers aren’t. Diagonally across the corridor from the kitchen, it’s a 134-litre Dometic fridge with removable freezer box.
There’s a similar tale of space-efficiency in the washroom, starting with its large tambour door. Black plastic folding and sliding doors create a circular area for showering using the pull-out showerhead. There’s also a Thetford swivel-bowl toilet on a plinth, and a somewhat flimsy fixed basin, with a window and rooflight for ventilation, locker storage plus a single hook.
When it comes to sleeping, it’s the double over the rear lounge that’s likely to be “bed one”, thanks to its ability to glide down to a lower level. But, same-size “bed two” isn’t far behind in terms of ease of use and access.
The Travel Line isn’t short on details. Light furniture keeps a continental feel to the interior. Sufficient windows. There’s lots of LED lighting and there are USB sockets front and rear. There are some useful extras to consider, too, like the external slide-out gas hotplate cooker.
Tempting to say nothing else quite like it. More like, Chausson is ahead of the curve with this vehicle. Check it out for yourselves.
Verdict: Clever Chausson creates a cracker
Plus: Four proper travel seats, two proper beds, lots of clever touches
Minus: Table arrangements might need a rethink, some flimsy plastic work
In-a-nutshell: Standard-bearer for an innovative four-berth
There’s more information on the Travel Line range on the Chausson website. Find out more about insuring this or your current motorhome on our motorhome insurance discounts page.
Alternatives: Bürstner Harmony Line TD 744, Pilote Pacific P650U
Chausson Welcome 711 Travel Line factfile
|Model||Chausson Welcome 711 Travel Line|
|Base vehicle||Fiat Ducato|
|Dimensions||7.46m L x 2.35m W x 2.92m H|
|RRP||From £54,650 on the road|
|Safety & security||Electronic immobiliser, remote central locking to all four doors, ABS and EBD, EBA (emergency brake assist), twin airbags|
|Key options||150bhp engine (£1,290), metallic cab £516, stereo upgrade with Bluetooth (£576), slide-out external cooker (£507)|