Going for luxury again
Lest we forget, Elddis also does luxury motorhomes. Keenly priced ones, mind you. Competitive pricing might be the County Durham-based manufacturer’s DNA, but with its Encore series it shows it’s not afraid to inch upmarket.
The Elddis Encore 250 motorhome here is the latest addition, bringing the range up to four models, all low-profile coachbuilts. They’re all now based on Fiat’s all-conquering Ducato chassis-cab. That’s another first for 2020. Until now, Peugeot’s Boxer had been the base vehicle, but it’s likely Elddis is starting to plumb richer economies of scale now that it’s part of the Erwin Hymer Group. And anyway, the switch to Fiat means it can also offer automatic transmission as an option. The 140bhp engine provides the starting point and should prove adequate for a motorhome like this.
That bodywork is made in the usual Elddis SoLiD way – with coloured aluminium sides and a protective GRP underskin. Key is the 10-year water ingress warranty, while features such as the overcab sunroof and window in the habitation door are pointers towards the Encore motothome’s upmarket aspirations.
Despite their presence in the photo above, though, alloy wheels are one of a number of options many would consider necessary on any motorhome considering itself a cut above.
Inside, first impressions don’t suggest it, but this is indeed a full four-berth and the light soft furnishings offset the dark finish to the furniture to help create a roomy ambience.
That front lounge – with its two settees, free-standing table and swivelled cab seats – only tells some of the story. Each settee base houses a forward-facing travel seat, firmly bolted to the chassis. In truth, they’re best for occasional use. They’re rather narrow, with fixed head restraints, lacking armrests and are set low.
But, the bigger downside is the loss of storage space in each settee base.
With the washroom and kitchen occupying the middle zone of the Elddis Encore 250 motorhome, that rear bedroom centres around an extending island double, flanked by wardrobes and, on the offside, a set of drawers. The mattress itself is set low and – despite the presence of high-level lockers on the back wall – most folk will find they can still sit up in bed.
The arrangement still means there’s a good amount of storage space in the bed base. The only surprise is there’s no divider for a bit of bedroom privacy.
Forward and on the right of the main bed area, the Encore 250’s washroom has a heated towel rail and there’s a retractable clothes drier. There’s a countertop sink and the whole room is needed when it comes to showering, via an Ecocamel outlet that saves water.
There’s just the one drainage point underfoot, and the lack of window, plus no storage under the sink are possible minus points.
There are pluses and minuses in the kitchen of the Elddis Encore 250, too. Worktop space here is restricted, despite a flip-up extension.
There’s a full cooker with dual-fuel hob and a circular sink (to which you add a drainer) to its left. A Russel Hobbs microwave oven completes the cooking facilities.
The black finish to the cooker and sink matches that of the slim-bodied Dometic fridge, set at a convenient height opposite.
Alde’s “wet” central heating and hot water system tops a decent overall specification. But, there are a few anomalies, such as a waste water tank that’s only 60 litres. There are some handy offerings on the optional extras list and, even adding these will still give you excellent value for money in the final price you pay.
In this video, we take a look inside the 2020 Elddis Encore 250 motorhome.
Verdict: Cut-price luxury for two (or four)
Plus: Can operate as a four-berth, Alde heating
Minus: Storage issues, washroom lacks a separate shower, rear travel seats don’t convince
In-a-nutshell: Luxury… on a budget
There’s more information on the Encore range on the Elddis website. Find out more about insuring this or your current motorhome on our motorhome insurance discounts page.
Alternatives: Auto-Trail Imala 730, Swift Escape 694
Elddis Encore 250 factfile
|Model||Elddis Encore 250|
|Base vehicle||Fiat Ducato|
|Dimensions||7.41m L x 2.35m W x 2.82m H|
|RRP||From £55,134 on the road|
|Safety & security||Electronic immobiliser, remote central locking, ABS and EBA (emergency brake assist), smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, CRiS VIN Chip, day-running headlights, TPMS tyre pressure monitoring system, Truma Drivesafe regulator|
|Key options||Alarm system (£322), tracker (£280), towbar (£600), DAB/satnav system (£530), satellite TV system (£1,699), Truma air conditioning (£1,350), bike rack (from £235), rear view system (£365), alloy wheels (£650), automatic transmission (£2,000), 160bhp engine with automatic transmission (£3,000), additional shelving pack (£42), leather upholstery (£1,650), bedding set (£260), Hypnos mattress (£200), external shower (£72), solar panel (£530)|