Davcar Camper Challenger: Review

By: Malcolm Street, Photography by: Malcolm Street


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Practically perfect: The Davcar Challenger is suitably equipped for your next offroad adventure.

Like many camper trailers in Australia these days, the Challenger is partly built in China but much of the assembly is done locally. Proprietor Steve Bennett said Davcar moved into the camper trailer market partly due to his own frustrations in searching for a mid-range camper. It’s a slight variation on an old, familiar story: "Couldn’t find one tough enough, so I built my own". The toughness was a factor for Bennett but the prime reason was to build a quality camper that was still affordable.

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

Underpinning the Challenger is a hot-dipped galvanised chassis with 100x50mm main rails and drawbar. It’s not quite a conventional box section structure but it does have 50x50mm cross members reinforced with angle at the join. The 135L stainless steel water tank is fitted between the rear rails and, in front of that, the spare wheel. Up front, a Hyland hitch is fitted along with the handbrake and the jockey wheel.

Like many good offroad camper trailers, the Challenger is fitted with independent suspension with coil springs, trailing arms and double action shock absorbers. It’s designed for easy wheel alignment adjustment with toe-in and toe-out adjustment. Also on the drawbar are two gas cylinder holders and two jerry can holders.

This camper trailer is, electrically, very well equipped. For a start, there are two 120Ah batteries in the front offside bin and an Anderson plug for charging said batteries. In addition to that, there are six 12V socket outlets (two in the trailer and four near the fridge) and each circuit has a marine-style switch with a fuse. The fixed lighting includes two bed reading lights, two kitchen lights and an overhead LED strip light.

In the trailer bay, the innerspring mattress measures 1950x1650mm and has a thickness of 110mm. As noted above it comes with bed reading lights and canvas pockets on either side for night time requirements. Under the bed, the 1280x1100mm drawer has a handy depth of 120mm, suitable for clothing and related items and also accessible when the camper is folded up.

HITS AND MISSES

Pros…

  • Spacious tent area
  • Nice kitchen setup
  • 12V lighting
  • Battery capacity
  • Multi-directional slide for Weber Baby Q
  • Good departure angle and clearance

Cons…

  • Spare wheel a bit awkward to get at
  • No two- or three-burner cooktop
  • Potential for heavy ball weight

DAVCAR CAMPER CHALLENGER SPECS

Trailer

  • Tare 1200kg
  • ATM 1750kg
  • Suspension Independent coil spring
  • Brakes 10in electric
  • Coupling Hyland 2000
  • Chassis 100x50mm RHS hot dipped galvanised
  • Drawbar 100x50mm RHS hot dipped galvanised
  • Body Galvanised steel
  • Wheel/tyre 265/70 R16
  • Style Rear-fold hardfloor

Dimensions

  • Box size 2250x1900mm
  • Length (hitch to tail lights) 4960mm
  • Tent size 4500x1900mm

Accessories

  • Gas cylinders 2 x 4kg holders
  • Water 135L
  • Cooktop No
  • Kitchen Stainless steel box with sink
  • Battery 2x120Ah

Price as shown

  • $29,500 (Qld)

 

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Check out the full feature in issue #96 January 2016 of Camper Trailer Australia magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration.