REVIEW: GOLDSTREAM RV 16FT FKST
We test and rate the Goldstream FKST 16ft pop-top caravan as part of Caravan World's Best Caravans test.
When it comes to solid, well-built vans, Goldstream RV builds some of the best on the block. Its 16ft FKST – newly decorated with CNC-cut furniture – came to BAV fitted with the so-called Aussie Adventure Pack, an optional upgrade to suit the rough and tumble of outback touring. Read the review below and be sure to check out the Goldstream caravan photo gallery for an indepth look at the caravan.
GOLDSTREAM RV 16FT FKST RATING CARD
VALUE FOR MONEY
The Goldstream 16ft FKST (front kitchen, shower and toilet) offers good value for money. Among other features, the combo bathroom in the front corner means no trudging to the amenities block during the night, while the Aussie Adventure Pack, which includes independent suspension, a Jabiru air-conditioner and so much more, lends the pop-top sophistication and touring versatility.
When the pop-top is level, the coupling sits quite low at 275mm because it’s secured to a steel plate that’s welded to the underside of the A-frame rails. Nonetheless, it remained steady and true behind our tow vehicle.
SETTING UP AND HITCHING UP
This is a ‘get there and start relaxing’ rig – quick and easy to set up, though shorter people might have difficulty reaching the pop-top clips.
SUITABILITY FOR INTENDED TOURING
For an adventurous couple – people who want to explore outback tracks and national parks – this pop-top has a lot to offer. The Aussie Adventure Pack equipment adds scope for travelling deeper into harsh terrain while your mates stay back in town. As a rough-road rig, this Goldstream hits the mark.
Fitting an island bed and a corner shower/toilet cubicle is quite a neat trick, especially when a dinette and front kitchen is part of the mix. Benchtop space isn’t a highpoint, thanks to the bathroom, but it’s a worthwhile trade-off.
QUALITY OF FINISH
Overall, the attention to detail is very pleasing. The CNC-cut furniture, with its glossy finish, is eye-catching and everything fits together like it should. One or two things seemed to be missing on our test van, though, such as gas struts to the overhead locker doors above the kitchen (they were fitted everywhere else), and labels for the 12V fuses. Certainly not a deal-breaker – everything else is very, very good.
Build quality is typical Goldstream – excellent. Crawl beneath this pop-top and you’ll find all hoses, wiring, etc., strapped out of harm’s way or tucked safely behind a chassis member. You’ll find checkerplate stoneguards protecting all vulnerable components. You’ll find the sort of experience that’s on show on every Goldstream van.
Given the size limitations of the pop-top, comfort items are, by necessity, sure to be limited. Bu that doesn’t mean Goldstream hasn’t thought things through. There’s an Aircommand Jabiru air-conditioner, TV, a bathroom and more – which all add up to comfy touring.
This pop-tops innovation lies in the fact that it contains everything – or most things – you’ll require within relatively compact dimensions. It’s a self-contained rig that’ll go where many other vans would fear to tread.
The revamped interior goes a long way to increasing this pop-top’s wow factor. It is stylish and refined, without being over the top. Of course, X-factor is more than just how a van looks on the inside. The 16ft FKST has a serious pedigree for rough-road/offroad touring, and it shows.
THE CARAVAN WORLD VERDICT
The Goldstream RV 16ft FKST is built by a company that truly knows how to bolt a van together. The team use their own vans and apply the lessons learned in the field – we reckon this little pop-top would do anyone proud as they got about Australia, on and off the road.
Here's the Goldstream RV 16ft FKST final score.
This story was adapted from Caravan World Issue 520. Why not subscribe today!
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