The name remains the same
So, it’s bye-bye Bolero, hello Swift Bessacarr, as the Swift Group shuffles its low-profile coachbuilts pack for 2018 season.
There will be nine Swift Bessacarrs to choose from, covering off all the most popular floorplans, from two to six berth – part of a brand-reinforcing policy that sees all motorhomes badged Swift from next season.
Bessacarr for Bolero isn’t a direct replacement, either. Rather, it’s a bit of streamlining. But, it’s also meant the opportunity to add new layouts – like the 599 here, featuring the floorplan-of-the-moment, as far as larger coachbuilts are concerned, comprising a rear island bed with full-width washroom amenities at its foot.
The exterior looks are certainly familiar, with black metallic cab followed by white bodywork using Swift’s Smart construction, backed by a 10-year guarantee.
Standard features range from reversing camera, to 16in alloy wheels, as well has handy low-level slide-out storage (Swift prefers the term pannier lockers). The 599 also has a full-width storage area across the back, accessible from both sides. The reversing camera combined with the Swift Command tracking system system will help to keep your motorhome insurance premium down.
Fiat’s ubiquitous Ducato underpins every Bessacarr. It’s shown here with the Lux Pack. The fact that it includes the likes of air conditioning and cruise control – also adding a Status 570 TV aerial – means it’s hard to see anyone not wanting to include it in their purchase.
Inside, a Skyview sunroof helps lighten up the whole interior, also providing extra ventilation when needed. There’s a new-look interior thanks to the latest finishes – Oyster Grey with gloss Aralie Sen for the overhead locker doors, Silverado soft furnishings.
But, it’s the bedroom you’ll want to check out first in the 599. Flanked by wardrobes and long side tabletops with lockers beneath, plus two overhead, the island bed comprises the usual metal-framed, wooden slatted base with Duvalay mattress.
The base hinges up to reveal storage for the lounge table as well as the spare wheel, the latter set deep in a well. Something of a rethink is needed here, because the table and, possibly more importantly, the wheel are going to be tricky to retrieve – especially once you’re loaded up for travel.
Forward of the bed, the washroom facilities are spread across the full width of the vehicle. There’s a part-circular plastic-lined shower cubicle with Ecocamel Orbit showerhead, and a separate room for the Thetford swivel-bowl toilet and fixed washbasin.
The latter is angled, but there’s nevertheless a bit of a shortage of space in this “wee room”, especially all-important legroom.
The kitchen is L-shaped, making it all the more space-efficient and the star feature here is the new Dometic CU600 cooker with dual-fuel hob (three gas rings, one electric hotplate, separate oven and grill) and that worktop, with its inset sink, doesn’t just look good, it’s also self-repairing to a degree – a world away from the easily cracked surfaces of yesteryear. You’ll no doubt appreciate the splash protection, too, along with a space-efficient narrow fridge/freezer easy to hand.
There’s an impressive lounge up front, with a half-dinette providing travel seating to take the quota up to four. Swivel cab seats and a long settee along the nearside complete the on-site seating. An alternative is two settees, doing away with the rear travel seat.
All 2018 Swift Bessacarrs benefit from the Swift Command app-based vehicle management system, including a pre-installed Thatcham Cat 6 tracker with option to subscribe, and Connect Direct, the online customer service account offering 24/7 information and service history reminders. Plus, Alde heating is standard.
Look out for a host of Swift-approved fittings your dealer can add, too. From Thule bike racks, to Oyster satellite TV systems, to air conditioning for the habitation areas. It’s all about how much you want to turn up the style!
Verdict: The style continues as Bessacarr blends into Swift
Plus: Blend of style and specification, island bed comforts
Minus: Cramped toilet room, spare wheel location
In-a-nutshell: Bessacarrs dance on, in style
There’s more information on the Swift Bessacarr range on the Swift website www.swiftgroup.co.uk. Find out more about insuring this or your current motorhome on our motorhome insurance discounts page.
Alternatives: Auto-Trail Frontier Delaware, Bailey Autograph 79-4, Elddis Encore 254, Hymer T-CL 698
Swift Bessacarr 599 factfile
|Model||Swift Bessacarr 599|
|Base vehicle||Fiat Ducato|
|Dimensions||8.11m L x 2.38m W x 2.76m H|
|RRP||From £60,930 on the road|
|Safety & security||Electronic immobiliser, remote central locking, ABS and EBD, EBA (emergency brake assist), twin airbags, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, fire extinguisher, reversing camera, Swift Command, Swift Connect Direct.|
|Key options||Lux Pack (£995), 150bhp engine (£2,345), Comfort-Matic automatic transmission (£1,750), 150bhp engine with Comfort-Matic (£4,095), Vele leather upholstery (£1,495), SwiftShield upholstery (£tbc), roof rack and ladder (£630), detachable towbar and electrics (£595)|
Note: All details correct at time of publication but may be subject to change.
*Motorhome insurance cost based on Swift Bessacarr 599 motorhome retailing at £60,930 with electronic immobiliser, Cat 6 approved tracking device and reversing camera fitted as standard, UK travel only. Kept on driveway at home at TD9 8ED behind a barrier. Motorhome owners – professionals over 50 years old with no claims, convictions or health conditions in last 3 years. 4 years no claims bonus mirrored from car policy and 2 years motorhome driving experience. Members of motorhome club doing less than 5000 miles annually. £350 excess applies. Premiums include insurance premium tax at 12% and are correct at 08.08.17.