First look: Sprite Quattro EB
The evergreen Sprite range has been impressively revamped for 2018, and is joined by a new twin-axle four-berth that offers great value for money, says Peter Baber
IT’S A TRIBUTE to the reputation that Sprite carries within the caravanning fraternity that when parent company Swift Group rationalised its brands this season, the Sprite name remained (but Sterling didn’t make it). Sprite was given a new lease of life, with a fresh exterior look and a seriously desirable spec list.
Those changes helped the 2018 Sprite Major 6 take our Tourer of the Year Award. The designers at Swift have also been busy on the new twin-axle Quattro EB, with a central washroom and an end transverse island bed.
Pitch and set-up
Sprites have always had a curvaceous front section. It used to look a bit more bubbly than rivals, in keeping with the Sprite’s cheap and cheerful image. After all these years under the Swift wing, that slightly more circular front has been retained, but there’s nothing about this van that suggests it’s a budget buy.
You get three windows at the front, not just one, as part of a dark glazed panel – together with the sunroof on our test model that’s a £365 optional extra.
Then there’s the external access to the locker at the back and the classily understated decals. Best of all, there are proper handles to the door. That’s something you don’t even see on supposedly luxurious caravans.
The décor inside this season’s new Sprites introduces bold hexagonal patterning on the curtains and glinting white locker doors that contrast strongly with the Aralie Sen woodwork.
The two settees are perfectly fine for the four people who could be living in the van, but may be a squeeze for any more. There’s no draught-excluding bolster by the door, but this is an entry-level van.
The rooflight allows in an adequate amount of light, but it’s so much better with the sunroof. For night-time lighting, you only get two small LED lights in the centre of the van and a spotlight in each of the four corners – these are non-directional. There is also dimmable ambient lighting throughout the lounge.
There are two mains sockets above the central chest, flanking two blank sockets.
A heating vent at the bottom in the nearside corner should keep you cosy, while another vent by the door will welcome you home.
Also by the door is a cabinet with TV sockets, so you could put a TV here, where most of the van’s occupants could see it.
This cabinet has a locker above it and a thin shelf for ornaments, while within the cabinet itself, you will find an open shelf for maps and keys, and a cupboard with two more shelves – although the lower one is partly taken up with the wheel arch.
The foldaway table is stored in a narrow slot behind this cabinet. It’s a bit of a chore to get out, because the door to the washroom slants slightly across this area.
The elegant curved panel above the worktop has switches and one socket above it. The worktop itself is greatly extended by the pull-out flap on the side, although this does
eat into the available seating in the front lounge. You (or a smaller helper) could also use the top of the cabinet if there’s no TV there.
Immediately beneath the worktop is a 100-litre Dometic fridge, while at the other end of the kitchen unit sits a threeburner hob above a grill and oven.
The hob is nicely illuminated by two little spotlights, as is the rest of the worktop, although that curved shelf casts a shadow.
The overhead lockers are a good size and come with a mug and crockery rack.
The slanted design of the central washroom door and the large wardrobe you come across as soon as you open it might seem unconventional. But such a configuration does make great use of the available space.
You get a suitable dressing area, while the wardrobe is large – particularly when you consider there isn’t one in the bedroom. It has two shelves to the side and one at the bottom, where you even get a heating vent.
The circular shower looks a little like something Scotty might beam you up in, but is well lit, even if it has no rooflight. There is a towel ring immediately outside it and a shelf high up above that would be good for non-essentials.
The small basin in the middle has two LED lights above it, a domestic-style tap, a mugholder and a cupboard underneath. The loo is on the offside and sits in front of an opaque window.
As mentioned, you don’t get the twin cupboards one usually expects to find flanking an island bed. But not having them creates a feeling of increased space, especially given the white doors fitted to the overhead lockers. You still get large bedside tables to place items on, though, above a drawer and a cupboard.
A small dressing unit in the corner is well kitted out, with two cupboards, a good mirror, two more spotlights and sockets. Best of all, a heating vent has been installed around the inner side of the bed to heat the far side. The bed itself, however, is only modestly sized at 1.88 x 1.33m.
The front bed really has to be a double as the settees only extend to 1.18m. But when you pull out the slats – an easy job – you create a double that is 2.02m long.
The huge area under the bed can easily be accessed from inside and out. The two underseat areas have access flaps inside. The nearside one is mostly clear, while the offside is partly taken up with the Swift Command system.
There are two drawers in the front chest, while all of the overhead lockers are large.
It’s an easy task to pull out the slats if you want to set up the front bed. It’s a generous 2.02m in length The pair of mains power sockets above the centre chest is well placed for charging portable devices The two settees are a smart contrast with the white locker fronts and will easily seat four
The light, airy bedroom feels spacious and provides a decent amount of storage space in the overhead lockers and two bedside tables
LEFT The kitchen has a 100-litre fridge and a three-burner hob and grill RIGHT Star of the well-planned washroom is the circular shower cubicle
The new-for-2018 twin-axle Sprite Quattro EB has a curvaceous front section, while its elegant exterior features classy, understated decals