Things to Consider When Choosing Your Best Off-Road Caravan
Whether you’re a beach, bush or an outback lover, exploring Australia in an off-road caravan can be an adventurous and exciting experience.Off-road caravans give you the opportunity to explore the country without the limitations of where you can camp. You will have the ability to free camp the outback or explore national parks and beach camping in the dunes.
As you travel off the beaten track, you’ll witness the beauty of Australia and discover the best hidden gems on the coast or in the outback. Indeed, it is an incredible feeling to park near a flowing creek, a calm lake or under the outback sky and to enjoy the serenity of it for the night. With an off-road caravan, you can be self sufficient and enjoy the freedom.
Check the Essential Basics.
When you’re buying an off-road caravan, you need to understand the key components that define what is a true off-road caravan.
Australia’s Best Off-road Caravans will need to have:
Ground clearance is a major factor with uneven ground in and out of gullies and rough terrain, standard touring vans will be dragging the back of the van with possible unwanted damage. You will also need to choose a caravan with a robust and proven independent suspension with dual shock absorbers on each wheel for a smooth ride on corrugations. Beware of imitation independent suspensions and choose a proven and reliable brand designed and manufactured in Australia for the tough Australian off-road conditions.
Robust Build Quality and Construction Techniques
Endless Corrugations and potholes can be the detriment of a pretend off-road caravan. The Chassis is the foundation of your home on wheels, the chassis design, the thickness of the steel, quality of the chassis steel and welds are of the upmost importance, next is the strength of your walls, capped off by a strong well insulated and watertight roof. Ensure your van is built with an Australian steel chassis, a properly joined and engineered aluminium frame and insist on a one piece roof. If your budget allows, try and avoid structural timber in your walls and roof, this can only lead to problems with water ingress and timber rot.
Heavy-Duty Off-road Coupling
There are many Off-road Coupling hitches on the market and most are rated to 3500kg or 4500kg, some are made in Australia and some are imported from overseas, we supply the Australian made Cruisemaster DO35 or DO45 hitches on our Offroad Caravans, these are a tested and proven off-road hitch which we never have any issues with and highly recommend them.
Powerful Braking System
Since you will frequently use your brakes, you need to pick a caravan with minimum 12” Off road electric drum brakes to each wheel, or treat yourself to the comfort of smooth discs. Disk brakes are a recent inclusion on high end Off-road caravans due to the fact they are not affected by water and dust and give a smoother braking effect.
Ensure your investment is well protected, clad in a durable and dent resistant cladding and low down aluminium checker plate. Checker plate is ideal for the bottom third of the vans body where stones and rocks can flick up and cause havoc. Not forgetting what frequent hail can do to the top of the van, ensure if weight allows to clad your van in one of the newer composite products or a 3mm+ fibreglass. The added benefit of a composite cladding or a fibreglass roof is the ease of sealing windows, doors, hatches, etc, on a flat smooth surface.
Power & Water
Australia’s best off-road caravans will have enough water and enough power to keep you going off grid. More than adequate water carrying capacity and over adequate 12v power is a must. With the heavy power use of todays oversized compressor fridges the ability to hold a large storage bank of power and the ability to charge quickly from solar power is an absolute must. Insist on lithium battery systems with a large solar input on your new van and again, choose a reputable brand with back up for when things get complicated. Lithium battery systems are complicated pieces of kit and a back up call to an Australian company for help is so invaluable.
Storage – Huge Payload for Off-road Gear
Storage is of huge importance while designing an off-road caravan, storage space for your BBQ, Generator, table, chairs, recovery gear, hoses, ramps, portable solar panel, and so much more. A huge front toolbox, tunnel boot and a well designed layout will help solve the storage problems. Our Manufacturers design our off-road caravans to carry huge loads of payload, most of our designs will have a 600 – 900kg worth of payload to allow for extra gear.
Interior: Outback with Luxury Comfort
After you’ve ticked off every item on the basics, you need to assess the quality of the interior. Generally, most caravans have a similiar layout and design, so you need to compare every caravan’s fittings, finishes, and materials used in the build process.
When you visit a caravan display yard, you can examine these things yourself. Always look for piano hinge on the internal doors because they can make a difference in your outback caravanning experience, they will stay solid in all circumstances, from our experience we believe your home kitchen hinges have too many moving parts causing misalignment and are not be suited to off-road travel. If you don’t know the difference between high-quality interior and a bad one, make sure you speak to experienced caravanners on what to look for and demand an explanation from your dealer as to how and why they build their interiors the way they do.
However, you can also do your research to make sure you get value for your money. You must remember that different manufacturers use unique technologies and methods to build an off-road caravan. That’s why it’s good to speak with a professional or do your research to find the best model for you.
Off-road Family Caravans
Family Off-road Caravansare becoming more popular with families Australia wide taking thier kids to do the lap of Australia or just doing an extended trip in a van. Adventures are best enjoyed when you’re with your loved ones. If you want to create memories with your kids and your family, a well designed family off-road caravan can fit up to 4 bunks allowing for up to 6 people in a Caravan and maybe the family dog.
Built for Purpose Off-Road Caravans on display @ Caravan Coffs Coast
If you want to explore the Australian Outback more comfortably, you can find the best solutions with Caravan Coff Coast’sHardcore off-road caravans.
We will only stock Australia’s best caravan brands with an aluminium frame and a proven back up warranty service, such as Titanium Southern Star Caravans and the Eden Wildtrax. These brands are designed and spec’d up by our design team, crafted to perfection, meeting our highest standards, we do not compromise on quality and exceptional finish. Our team put in a huge effort to bring together Austraila’s best caravans, please view our proven track record of 5 star reviews on Google and Facebook.
Ask an expert, please call us for advice on off-road caravanning, contact us on 02 6652 5523 or send us an email by completing our contact form on the website. You can also visit us at 186 Pacific Hwy, Coffs Harbour NSW 2450.