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The shower/toi­let is on the off­side wall op­po­site the en­trance and is ac­cessed via a mag­net­i­cally re­tained opaque screen door. The toi­let seat can be swiv­elled for eas­ier ac­cess and the sink tap ex­tends to serve as the shower rose. A small wind­out hatch with ex­trac­tor fan is fit­ted in the ceil­ing. A large mir­ror is mounted as part of the rear wall of the cu­bi­cle and there are two stor­age racks fit­ted to the van­ity and a fold-down hatch reveals an­other stor­age com­part­ment.

The cu­bi­cle is not overly large but does ap­pear to be an ad­e­quate com­pro­mise for those who need (or want) a bath­room in­side the car­a­van.

At the rear of the van are the two bunk beds. Un­der the lower bunk, ac­cessed by a strut-as­sisted bed hatch, is a huge stor­age space that would serve to store just about all the kids’ toys. There are also two wardrobes sit­u­ated ad­ja­cent to the ex­ter­nal door. The bunks each have a small hopper win­dow, with screen and blind, plus a read­ing light on the near­side wall of each bunk. The up­per bunk is ac­cessed via a re­mov­able step lad­der that clips into hold­ers on the bunk’s side. Each bunk is long enough and com­fort­able enough for an adult to sleep in, but ac­cess is tight. Of course, kids won’t have any prob­lem jump­ing into the bunks.

THE BOT­TOM LINE

There are plenty of car­a­vans out there to choose from, that much is cer­tain. The pool of full-size fam­ily bunk vans is a lit­tle shal­lower, though, es­pe­cially ones that have the po­ten­tial to be towed by 2500kg-re­stricted ve­hi­cles such as the Toy­ota Prado while still pro­vid­ing all the crea­ture com­forts in­clud­ing a shower/toi­let.

But noth­ing is per­fect, of course, and the 2014 Sap­phire would be im­proved by hav­ing more durable read­ing lights for the bunk beds, a bet­ter so­lu­tion for the hot wa­ter service lo­ca­tion and a lit­tle more kitchen space.

Yet aside from the at­trac­tive weight to fea­tures/ size ra­tio of this van, the fact that is has so much stor­age space – and a de­cent pay­load so you can ac­tu­ally use it – a great deal of walk­way space and gen­eral feel of roomi­ness, makes it a win­ner. Plus it is an ab­so­lute gem to tow, so it all adds up to a fam­ily car­a­van worth con­sid­er­ing.

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