Big and best!
Don’t be surprised if either or both of Coachman’s brand new Laser Xcel caravans pick up a few awards this year (i.e. 2020). Models 850 and 875, both featuring retractable transverse island beds, top the Hull-based manufacturer’s offering for the year ahead, coming in at just under £40,000 apiece.
In fact, hot of the press, the Xcel 850 won the “Best luxury tourer” category at the Practical Caravan of the Year Awards 2020, for its ‘pizzaz’ and long list of high spec touches.
They’re big. And they’re serious. Representing the company’s first foray in the flourishing wide-bodied sector.
If you’ve considered Coachman Caravans a tad conservative in the past, have a look at this – the Coachman Laser Xcel 875.
Those 3D graphics kick things off. Note, also, aspects like the two front lockers, as well as silver sides, black trimwork, and chunky grab handles. The side windows are not quite flush-fitting, though.
Inside, it’s as you’d expect – it’s very plush. Just to sit on the interior-sprung seating – or indeed lie on the beds – is enough to tell you this is a top-end tourer.
Needless to say, too, it’s packed with equipment. Too much to list here, but highlights include Alde heating and hot water (with all radiator and pipework neatly concealed), E&P Levelling System, a Pioneer stereo (DAB/FM/AM, Bluetooth, USB etc), underfloor freshwater tank, integrated mobile phone charging unit in the bulkhead and more.
In terms of security and safety, the Coachman Laser Xcel 875 has a Phantom VanGuard remote control alarm system with PIR and tilt sensors, two Al-KO Secure wheel locks and Al-Ko ATC, which will get you some healthy discounts on your caravan insurance with Caravan Guard. There’s also the option to add a Phantom Sentinel Tracker for even more caravan insurance discounts!
The extra width helps, of course, but it’s very much open plan, albeit with a pleated divider for privacy between the bedroom and the rest of the caravan.
The retracting function makes it just that bit easier to get around the bed when you don’t want it to its fullest extent. It’s flanked by his and hers wardrobes set over drawer-and-locker lower units that provide rather small ledges.
There are padded pockets to each side, too, as well as speakers for the music system and reading lights with USB sockets
Beyond the bedroom, it’s a sliding door that gives access to a very impressive washroom. The toilet has a window beyond, plus there’s a heated towel rail to its left.
The central countertop basin has a narrow tap and a large mirror. The double-doored locker below will host most of your necessary washroom kit.
It’s single door access to the shower cubicle. It’s all rather stylish, but there’s just the single drainage point.
Lots of marble-effect trim helps with the overall ambience. More importantly, there’s certainly plenty of space for getting dressed.
The kitchen is offside, with a worktop extension left, cooker right, and a microwave oven directly above the hob.
It’s the small, plastic drainer that’s a bit at odds with the overall quality theme here. Slightly surprisingly, too, the two drawers don’t have a soft-close function (whereas the overhead lockers do).
Dometic’s dual-hinged fridge/freezer is here to good effect, too, while other fittings range from an Omnivent to full slide-out tray to the angled lower cupboard.
As you’ll have guessed, it’s a hefty unit. Like all Coachman caravans, the Xcels are built using the manufacturer’s ABC (Advanced Bonded Construction), featuring aluminium and polystyrene sandwich panels, backed by a 10-year water ingress warranty.
If you want an alternative washroom treatment, sister model 850 switches the bed orientation and puts the shower and toilet facilities ahead of the bedroom, mid-‘van.
Upgrade to 2,000kg if you want to go the whole hog. Serious caravanners need apply only.
Verdict: Coachman goes wide – to stunning effect
Plus: Well made and well appointed, makes the most of its extra width
Minus: You pay the price in weight
In-a-nutshell: Big, bold, brilliant
There’s more information on the Laser range on the Coachman website. To find out more about insuring this or your current caravan visit our caravan insurance discounts page.
Alternatives: Buccaneer Cruiser, Swift Elegance Grande 845
Coachman Laser Xcel 875 factfile
|Model||Coachman Laser Xcel 875|
|Dimensions||7.90m L, 2.44m W, 2.65m H|
|RRP||from £35,945 on the road|
|Safety & security||AL-Ko ATC, E&P Levelling System, two Al-Ko Secure wheel locks, Al-Ko AKS 3004 stabiliser, smoke alarm, carbon monoxide detector, Phantom Vanguard remote control PIR alarm with tilt sensors, CRiS.|
|Key options||Truma Aventa air conditioning (£1,710), Phantom Pro 3 tracking system (£390), 100Watt solar panel (£395), shelf pack (£50), branded towing cover (£400)|