Considering it was initially the name of a raft from Norway that sailed the Pacific Ocean, the Kon-Tiki really has come a long way since. More significantly (for some of us), Kon-Tiki was also the name adopted by Swift for its first ever foray into motorhome production – back in the mid 1980s.
And here it is, approaching the end of its third decade in continuous production, in just one of its five latest guises.
It’s certainly grown-up. This 635 is over 8m long and comes on a Fiat Ducato/Al-Ko set-up rated at 4,250kg that gives a starting payload of 499kg.
It boasts Swift’s latest SMART bodywork construction, which includes a double floor for extra insulation as well as low-level storage.
What you see is what you get here. There certainly aren’t endless lists of options. Instead, this example is all-standard, so features like the black cab, alloy wheels, twin lens reversing camera and recessed, fully 5m awning are standard.
Inside, the luxury continues. This 635 offers four berths for travel and sleeping, the latter comprising twin rear single beds at 1.87m x 0.71m, which can also be made into a 2.03m x 1.23m transverse double. Plus, there’s a lounge double at 2.04m x 0.91m.
There’s also a lounge alternative available. If you prefer, you can have twin settees rather than the forward-facing travel seat set-up shown here. The latter arrangement can certainly cope with guests on site. You could probably squeeze in up to seven folk here once the travel seat is adapted to provide an L-shaped settee. There are two table choices, too.
Needless to say, there’s a proper kitchen here, mid-‘van nearside. It includes a dual-fuel hob with separate oven and grill, microwave oven and a 190-litre Dometic 8-series fridge with removable freezer box and automatic energy selection.
Storage includes a large cupboard with fixed shelving, dedicated crockery fittings, cutlery drawer and two slide-out metal baskets.
Directly across from the kitchen, the washroom includes a separate shower cubicle with bi-folding door, alongside the swivel-bowl toilet and fixed sink. Again, storage is good here, while the only surprise is the lack of a window that’s always so useful for ventilation.
Alde heating completes a highly impressive standard specification listing. There are plenty of cab upgrades, too, including DAB stereo with Bluetooth, padded steering wheel, dashboard trim, captain’s seats and more.
Elsewhere, there’s a solar panel and twin 100ah leisure battery set-up. Water tanks – 120-litre fresh, 100-litre waste – are underslung, insulated and heated, so this Kon-Tiki rally is ready to tackle all weathers.
Storage is hardly likely to be an issue, either, thanks to that garage under the rear beds, although the only access is from the rear offside. Despite the spare wheel in here, there’s plenty of room and the chequerplate flooring with lashing points will cope with heavy-duty gear.
Indoors, there are plenty of lockers, plus a second wardrobe (in one of the bed bases) as well as good underseat space that’s fairly easy to access.
Today, Kon-Tiki faces most of its rivalry from imports, but it continues to bang the drum for British luxury.
Verdict: Upmarket twin single beds format in a brilliant all-in package
Plus: All-year capabilities, Alde heating, extra-comfortable single beds
Minus: No washroom window,
In-a-nutshell: Becoming a bit of a British legend
Cost to insure: £385.50
- Swift Kon-Tiki 635
- Fiat Ducato, 2.3-litre, 150bhp Euro V+
- Dimensions 8.06m L, 2.35m W, 2.98m H
- Maximum weight 3500kg
- Payload 499kg
- Key options: Comfort-Matic automatic transmission (£1,695), Impala/leather upholstery (£895), towbar and electrics (£595), roof rack and ladder (£550)
- Security and Safety Electronic immobiliser, ABS and EBD, twin airbags, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, Tracker Retrieve, in-cab battery isolator switch, LED day-running lights, remote central locking to all doors
- MPG estimate 24-27
Recommended retail price from £67,690**
There’s more information on the Kon-Tiki 635 on the Swift website. To find out more about our low-cost premiums visit the motorhome insurance discounts page.
Alternatives: Adria Coral Supreme S 670 SL, Auto-Trail Frontier Savannah, Dethleffs Esprit Comfort T 7150-2 EB, Hymer T-SL 704, Knaus Sun TI 700 MEG, Rapido 7066dF
*Motorhome insurance cost based on Swift Kon-Tiki 635 retailing at £67,690 fitted with manufacturers immobiliser and Tracker Retrieve. UK travel only. Kept in secure storage with a 24hr locked barrier at TD9 8ED. Motorhome owners – professionals over 50 years old with no claims or convictions 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 up to 5000 miles annually. £300 excess applies. Premiums include insurance premium tax at 6% and are correct at 21/05/2015.
**On-the-road, including VAT at 20%