2015 Sterling Continental 480
2015 Sterling Continental 480
Launched for the 2014 season at the spring NEC show, the Continental range ran for three years before being discontinued. That was a shame, because this is a very smart-looking tourer. An excellent spec also pushed these models into a new league of design. Using the latest construction methods, the Continental has a very stylish exterior and it doesn’t stop there, either. This interior has a far more contemporary look than the Seville. The layout also features a large front lounge, offside kitchen, nearside dresser and full-width end washroom. Although the Continental is no longer made, it’s still a stunner. It is more expensive than the Seville, but its design and build should make it worth the extra cost. It is heavier than the Seville, so you would also need a bigger tow car for the Continental. Inside and out, both models were looking as good as they did when they left the factory.
Pitch and set-up
Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480 Built on the Al-ko chassis, the Seville comes with the ATC anti-snaking system. GRP sidewalls offer good damage resistance, while all windows looked to be in good condition. The Continental has all of the above, but also comes with a large front gas locker and a front nearside locker. The Seville’s gas locker, on the nearside, only takes cylinders, nothing else, although there is also a separate storage locker on the front nearside. Both have a barbecue point, exterior mains sockets and alloy wheels. All service points are on the offside. The Seville’s battery is in the floor, so only a mains inlet socket is fitted. The battery box is the norm on the Continental. Both have solar panels and Status TV aerials. The Continental has full heavy-duty steadies, while the Seville only has them at the rear. Overall, the Continental wins here.
Lounge Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
Step into the Seville’s lounge, then walk into the Continental’s, and both have twin single settees with a central chest of drawers, but the Continental looks ultra-modern. The Seville has slightly sloping back-rests and the upholstery looks a tad bland against the Continental. Both have a Cd/radio, but the Continental’s is hidden away in a front overhead locker, while the Seville’s is on show. The Continental has more storage space, including two front corner units. The Seville has limited underseat access, via a very small flap, but the Continental has full-length access on both sides. Both have LED lighting and a Midi Heki rooflight. The Continental has more mains sockets, with several in the lounge. So our clear winner here was the Continental.
Beds Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
The Seville has twin single beds up front, which are quite wide and offer good support. These also make up a sizeable double bed, using slats from under the chest of drawers. The Continental’s twin single beds also make up a generous double, using slats. So with both offering very good sleeping accommodation, this one is a tie.
Kitchen Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
Side kitchens are fitted in both and the pair offer plenty of spec and worktop, too. The Seville has a dual-fuel hob and full oven, as does the Continental. Each has a microwave just above the main kitchen unit, but the Continental’s is better finished and fits snugly, while the Seville’s looks more like a retrofit. The fridge in the Seville is a slim-line Dometic, while the Continental has a more standard-size unit. Storage capacity is better in the Seville, but its drinks cabinet, in the kitchen, can’t really compete with the swish design of the Continental’s drinks cabinet, which is located just opposite, in the side dresser. The Seville has good overhead storage, as does the Continental, and night-time illumination in both is excellent, making them level pegging at this stage. Both have extending worktops, plus mains sockets, and the Continental also has a splashback, which lights up for added brightness. The Continental has an Omnivent above the kitchen for ridding steam and smells; the Seville just has a Mini Heki rooflight. The sink is almost the same size in both kitchens and overall, the condition in both was excellent, too. The Seville just nudges past for its extra storage, but it’s a close call.
Washroom Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
This can be a make or break for some! Let’s start with the Seville, which has a good-sized washroom and a sizeable wardrobe, too. The Continental also has a generous wardrobe, with two drawers in its base. The handbasin in the Seville is far better than the Continental’s, being deeper and more practical. The Seville has a fold-out shaving mirror, which is a a nice touch, and a fair-sized storage cupboard, too. The Continental has a chrome radiator and its shower cubicle is larger than the Seville’s. Lighting is good in both tourers, with LED
lights, a window and a roof vent to provide plenty of natural light and ventilation. Both have Thetford electric-flush toilets and overall storage is about equal. Although the Seville’s washroom is really excellent, we feel the Continental’s just takes the lead, with its two speakers in the ceiling for music while you shower.
Storage Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
We like the fact that the Continental has extra front lounge overhead storage. But both have a central chest of drawers with a slide-out coffee table, and generous underseat storage, too. The Seville beats the Continental in terms of kitchen storage, with bigger drawers, acres of worktop on the side dresser, and a cupboard with three drawers and shelves. Some of the dresser space loses out to the side gas locker, but a useful wall pouch has been placed here to compensate. The Continental has its snazzy drinks cabinet and TV aerial adjustment just above the dresser. Its rear washroom storage is on a par with the Seville, but the clincher for some might be the Continental’s front gas locker, a feature that many see as essential to store other items. So this is another tie.
Verdict Bailey Unicorn III Seville Sterling Continental 480
The Continental is clearly heavier and more costly than the Bailey, but does that mean the Seville wins hands down? Actually, it’s not quite as straightforward as that – the Seville is a very spacious tourer, with plenty of mains sockets and super lighting. It has a great kitchen and a highly practical washroom, too. So what does the Continental have to offer to justify that extra weight and cash? Well, it looks stunning from the outside, particularly because of its profile, rear panel and LED road lights. It has a better finish inside and out, and its interior looks more modern. That said, the interior might not be to everyone’s taste. However, we think the overall looks and quality of the Continental definitely make it worth the extra money (even though it’s a tad shorter than the Seville), so for us, the Continental is the winner here.
CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE The Continental’s stylish lounge is a real wow factor. The side dresser has clean lines and houses the swish drinks cabinet. The smart exterior design is practical too, with a capacious front gas locker and useful grab handles