Adria Altea 552UP: Review
Lightweight and with a flexible layout, the Slovenian built Adria Altea 552UP has undergone an impressive internal makeover.
With a Tare of 1370kg and an ATM of 1800kg, it’s not surprising that the Adria Altea 552UP is an easy towing caravan. Certainly, the well-used Nissan Patrol that I towed it with had no problems coping with it. Equally, something such as a Ford Falcon would make a suitable tow vehicle, with plenty of tow capacity in reserve.
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
On the subject of ground clearance, there’s a more or less a standard Al-Ko chassis design underneath the caravan body, with C-section main rails and drawbar. There have been a few changes made for the Australian market, including an extra set of parallel rails running forward from the axle and an extra cross member. And the rails are about 1.5mm thicker than the standard Euro chassis, which does add a bit of weight. A a rough-road version of the van with a chassis that sits higher off the ground in also available in Australia. Upfront, instead of a standard ball coupling, is an Al-Ko hitch. Above the chassis, the insulated caravan floor is both glued and bolted down.
Build-wise, the van has a composite structure for the entire body, with ply timber on both sides of an insulation layer and an outer coating of polyester. Moulded fibreglass has been used for the front and back walls, because of their shape. Like the rest of the Adria range, the body structure is designed to make a contribution to the overall strength, which is why a lighter chassis has been used.
For a relatively small van, the external bin area is quite generous – aided, in part, by the fact that the under-seat areas on both sides have external bin doors. For wet items, the front boot offers some space, although both the gas cylinders and spare wheel are also stored there, with the gas cylinders in a separate compartment.
HITS & MISSES
- Lightweight, easy-to-tow caravan
- Nice LED lighting
- Light and bright interior
- Decor and finish much improved on previous models
- Quite small kitchen
- Dinette blocked slightly by bathroom
- Microwave is set quite high
ADRIA ALTEA 552UP SPECS
Weights and measures
- Overall length 7.6m (25ft)
- External body length 6.31m (20ft 8in)
- External body width 2.4m (7ft 10in)
- Travel height 2.58m (8ft 6in)
- Internal height 1.95m (6ft 5in)
- Tare 1370kg
- ATM 1800kg
- Ball weight 100kg
- Frame Composite
- Cladding ABS and polyester, with fibreglass front and rear
- Chassis Hot-dipped galvanised
- Suspension Al-Ko Torsion
- Brakes 10in electric
- Wheels 14in alloy
- Water 2x50L
- Battery 1x100Ah
- Solar No
- Air-conditioner Truma Saphir
- Gas 2x4.5kg
- Sway Control No
- Cooking Dometic three-burner
- Fridge Dometic RM8551 189L
- Microwave Camec
- Toilet Thetford cassette
- Shower Combo with flexible hose, fixed height
- Lighting LED and halogen
- Hot water Truma 14L
Price as shown
- $50,740 (on-road, Qld)
The full test appears in Caravan World #544 December 2015. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!