Caravan Reviews

The Incredible Shrinking Van

The Euro Sunseeker compresses size, weight and budget for a truly minimalist approach.
By Philip Lord

There is a large pool of around 120 caravan brands to choose from in Australia but if you’re looking for a light, compact shower/toilet van, the choices quickly evaporate. Turn up to almost any caravan yard and say you want a 9-ft (body length) caravan, with shower/toilet please, and you’ll probably be laughed off the lot.

For images, videos and the full RV Daily experience, read this in our online magazine.

Yet there is one caravan company who can sell you exactly that. Euro Caravans opened up shop two years ago, importing the Polish Niewiadow caravans and (understandably) rebranding them as the Euro. The range consists of the Glider, Sunseeker and NR Freedom.

The 10-ft (internal length) Sunseeker we’re looking at here is slightly larger than the base 9-ft entry-level Glider model. The range is topped off with the 11-ft Euro NR Freedom, which has an 870kg Tare weight. The Sunseeker and Glider are three-berth vans (with an optional child’s hammock, they become a four-berth) but with the space eaten up by the $2800 option bathroom package (as reviewed here) they’re two-berthers.

Like many vans, the Euro body sits fairly high off the ground so there’s a separate small folding step ladder supplied. The door doesn’t have a window or a separate screen door, and the locking mechanism is a bit clumsy. Fit and finish is very good inside, but the cabinets do feel a little flimsy. There has to be some concession for the sheer lightness of this van and this was the only obvious one we found.

The four double-glazed windows are large and allow a lot of natural light into the van. The two side windows are fixed and curtained, while the opening front and rear windows are screened and meshed plus they have interior curtains.

There’s also a mesh-screened roof hatch. The walkway to the front cafe/dinette is wide for such a small van and you don’t feel wedged in when sitting at the dinette. The Euro has storage lockers under the seats, with the battery, inverter and 240V circuit breaker in the nearside and the Truma five-litre hot water service in the offside. Both lockers have room left over for storing gear.

The kitchen has good bench space for food prep if you keep the folding glass lids down on the cooker and sink. Open these up and there’s not a lot of open bench to play with, but you can always use the space above the fridge on the nearside wall.

Above and below the kitchen there’s a good storage space with deep cupboards below the bench and small lockers above. Below-ceiling lockers line the nearside, front and part of the offside where there’s also a wardrobe. Push-button latches secure the large locker but the small ones up around the ceiling rely on spring-loaded hinges that don’t seem strong enough to contain gear when on a transport stage.

The Euro’s party trick is its surprisingly roomy shower/toilet. It’s got a fold-down basin with taps and mirror above on the back wall above the cassette toilet, and near the offside wall at the front of the bathroom is the shower rose and mixer tap. A shower curtain track is fitted on the ceiling, and a light is secured to the rear wall. There’s an opaque hinged window on the offside but it isn’t screened. Behind the toilet the two 10-litre water containers and 12V pump sit in a lidded recess.

There are 12V downlights in the living/bedroom area and a fixed light above the kitchen. There are two accessory ports on the front side of the fridge cupboard, as well as a 240V two-pole outlet. There’s an exterior light and a sail track on the nearside for the optional annexe. Underneath, the spare wheel is secured in a steel cradle at the rear; and the chassis, of galvanised C-channel steel construction, supports a torsion beam axle with a shock absorber on each side. An AL-KO override friction coupling and fold-up jockey wheel cover off the drawbar features.

Our Sunseeker came with the $1780 optional annexe, which was really easy to set up and pack away – not a given with annexes. Yet it could do with better cross-ventilation and a sewn-in floor would be good too. Euro Caravans is looking into making such improvements down the track. A front storage box has retainers for two 9kg gas bottles (one is supplied with the van) and plenty of space to pack gear around the bottle(s).

With a Tare of just 550kg, the Sunseeker can be legally towed by almost any vehicle. We hitched it up behind a Fiat Panda Twin Air, which towed it easily. The Euro has a 0kg towball download at Tare, and gets a sway up on the freeway at 100km/h when towed that way. Add just 35kg ball load (as we did, by packing the front boot) – then the Sunseeker, and despite cross winds and large trucks passing, will tow rock-solid.

The Euro needs some minor improvements (such as a meshed bathroom window and better annexe design) but while there are bigger, stronger shower/toilet vans out there none has the light weight and high value equation ticked as well as the Euro Sunseeker.

Body length: 3200mm
Body width: 2000mm
Tare weight: 550kg
Price as tested: $29,700

• Shower/toilet in a 12-foot van
• Super-light weight
• Fit and finish

• No mesh screen on bathroom window
• Cabinetry a bit fragile
• Upper lockers need better latches

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment

Support our advertisers

Subscribe for free

Support our advertisers