Two, four… and now, six. Those are the berths options you can now have with Swift’s smart little Basecamp range. Indeed, not so little now, either, with the arrival of Basecamp 6, which can indeed provide accommodation for half a dozen folk.
Calling all caravan newcomers!
It’s bigger, it’s bolder. Indeed, it’s the biggest Basecamp yet, continuing Swift’s rather radical approach to a new style of caravanning – one that’s more geared to those who like their outdoor activities more on the rugged side.
As is the Swift Basecamp way, it announces itself with a really distinctive look, thanks to some radical graphics (there are also a handful of exterior alternatives on the options list, if you want to push the boat even further). Those flared out wheel arches, lower skirting and graphite plastic mouldings all add to the look.
Under all the make-up, though, it’s all built using Swift’s SMART technology, with GRP sides and roof and main framework using polyurethane battens. The only timber here is in the floor, where there’s also dual-density foam made from recycled PET bottles.
Unusual for any caravan, the main access is at the back, where there’s a wider than normal windowed door – offering easier access to load bikes, surf boards and the like for travel. Lashing points are provided on the floor, front and back, for such purposes, but you’ll want to keep an eye on the 166kg payload.
The Swift Basecamp 6 floorplan is governed by that main entrance door. There’s plenty of seating/bedding, but you’ll immediately notice it’s again that bit different. Aluminium framework pervades, and the seat bases lack the usual box design you might expect. There’s still space to stuff your belongings however, and the underfloor Whale heating and hot water fittings mean there’s more storage space, too.
Inside the Swift Basecamp 6 you’ll soon notice all kinds of differences with this caravan, not least the curved single window and lack of the usual centre chest of drawers at the front. It’s actually a fairly decent-sized lounge, with a straightforward adaptation of the parallel settees to a transverse double bed measuring some 1.98m x 1.30m.
At the back, there’s daytime dinette seating to either side, while at night there’s the opportunity to make up to four bunk beds.
They’re definitely designed for children – there’s a 77kg weight limit and the bed lengths are 1.78m.
Along the nearside mid-‘van, it’s a relatively long run of kitchen, with a three-burner gas hob and a Thetford Duplex oven/grill combination unit accompanied by a stainless steel sink with mixer tap and a Dometic fridge – a 10 series model with removable freezer box if you want a larder-only facility. Maximum capacity is 83 litres. There’s also a relatively generous section of permanent worktop to the right of the sink.
It’s a rather small kitchen cutlery drawer, but one of two slide-out lockers flanking the fridge includes a second small drawer that’s suitable for larger utensils. There are also two large drawers under the oven, three overhead lockers (the central one has racking for plates and mugs) and a pillar with two mains sockets.
Opposite the Swift Basecamp 6 kitchen, the washroom has a solid door. There’s no window in here but there is a rooflight. Specifying a bench toilet (as here) rather than the more usual swivel-bowl variety makes cleaning around the washroom all the easier.
The Ecocamel showerhead has its own trigger operation, which saves water, and the riser bar means you can locate the showerhead at a height that’s best for you. The only locker is where you’ll probably end up stuffing the shower curtain when not needed, too. Underfoot, the shower tray is moulded around the wheel arch and has just the one drainage outlet.
The first Basecamps were unveiled in 2016 and it’s fair to say Swift has been refining the concept ever since. Fittings such as the 100Watt solar panel, the two dimmable reading lights (one over each settee) with USB ports, concertina blinds with flyscreens, lots of plastic internal mouldings, along with items such as elasticated storage pods, help make this a different caravanning proposition.
That £25,995 isn’t cheap, and it’s Swift’s price as it’s left the factory. These days, it lets its dealers decide how much for on-the-road charges.
You’ll probably want to budget for some extra caravan security, too, to help keep your caravan insurance premium low.
Not forgetting, for most buyers, either of the inflatable awning options is going to be an absolute must.
Verdict: A great one for the outdoors
Plus: Individualistic, accommodation for up to six, lots of innovation
Minus: Pricey, not for the retiring
In-a-nutshell: Swift gets active
There’s more information on the Basecamp range on their dedicated website. To find out more about insuring this or your current caravan visit our caravan insurance page.
Alternatives: Adria Action (two-berth only), Bailey Discovery D4 -4 (four-berth only), Knaus Deseo (four-berth only), Knaus Sport and Fun Black Selection (four-berth only)
Swift Basecamp 6 factfile
|Model||Swift Basecamp 6|
|Dimensions||6.57m L, 2.28m W, 2.62m H|
|RRP||from £25,995 ex-works|
|Safety & security||VIN Chip, Al-Ko AKS 3004 stabiliser, receiver for Al-Ko Secure, smoke alarm, carbon monoxide detector|
|Key options||SwiftShield upholstery (£395), ATC Trailer Control (£375), Bespoke Vango awnings (£725 and £995), storage cover (£499), Al-Ko Secure wheel lock (£265), alternative graphics (£895)|