Best campervans 2023 | Which car?
With flight and hotel prices rising, many people are turning to humble campervans as a more cost-effective way to spend their summer vacation, and as a result, the demand for campervans is as high as ever. In fact, if you buy a new one, you’ll likely be looking at a long waiting list to receive it.
It’s no wonder then that many manufacturers now offer their own camper conversions, while more are offering vans converted by aftermarket suppliers, but with the same warranty and dealer support that a factory conversion would entail.
We’ve tested the best available on the UK market – and ranked them so you can decide which one is best for you below. But first, we have answers to some common campervan questions you may be wondering. If you simply want to know what the best campervan is, here’s your answer: The Mercedes V-Class Marco Polo is the best campervan available in the UK.
Your questions are answered in the cart
What vehicle can I drive?
If you hold a driving license issued before 1 January 1997, you will have a C1 entitlement on your licence, which allows you to drive vehicles with a maximum permissible mass (MAM) of up to 7,500kg.
However, if your driving license is issued after this date, you will be limited to entitlements B and B1. What this means is that you will be limited to campervans weighing up to 3500kg MAM. But this is little cause for concern, as most motorhomes and campervans are built below this weight limit, thus enabling most UK license holders to drive them.
Why are campers so expensive?
Converting a truck into a campervan is a labor-intensive task, and that’s before you factor in adding custom, low-profile furniture that requires extensive design and development.
On top of that, modern campers have to pass stringent safety regulations, and don’t forget that most campers need a fairly stout engine to move their weight – this means they often rely on powerful, higher-spec engines Cut out the basic versions you find powering most trucks Regular.
With all that in mind, it’s no surprise that campervans cost a significant amount to purchase. On the plus side, high demand and relative scarcity of supply means they tend to hold their value on the used market well.
How do you buy a cart?
The same way you buy any other car or truck. You can buy a brand new campervan, directly from the manufacturer or converter, or you can buy a used campervan from a dealer or from the previous owner themselves.
However, don’t forget that there are a lot of items you will need to check if you are purchasing a campervan; Not only do you have the basics of the truck’s engine, gearbox, suspension and underpinnings to deal with, but you also have the complex housing systems – gas, water, upholstery, etc. You should also check that the living area is waterproof.
Is a campervan the same as a mobile home?
Not quite, although there is a blurred line between the two. However, the accepted wisdom is that a campervan is a truck set up to sleep, with an all-metal body and, sometimes, a pop-up roof or raised plastic roof.
In contrast, a mobile home is larger, based on truck foundations, with a purpose-built chassis built separately (usually entirely of fiberglass) and then bolted on top. By these definitions, all of the trucks on our list below fall into the camper category — even the Volkswagen Grand California, with its massive fiberglass roof extension.
Can campervans go into the Eurotunnel?
Yes. Standard campervans and motorhomes weighing up to 3,500 kg MAM can use the Eurotunnel, although they will have to travel in the large vehicle section, because standard train cars will not allow the necessary roof removal.
Campers over 3,500kg MAM will still be able to use the Eurotunnel, but will likely have to travel as cargo, which may involve abandoning the vehicle as it travels through the Channel Tunnel, and instead traveling in a separate passenger vehicle.
Can the tow truck pull the car?
Yes, although you will need to make sure you do it safely. You can use either an A-frame rig to do this, or tow the vehicle on a separate trailer. Keep in mind that you will have to maintain the maximum weight of the camper, in addition to what your license allows – so it pays to do your research before committing to this course of action.