Best Aussie Vans Winner 2015 Compass Navigator Test Review
Affordable and well built, the Compass Navigator scoops top honours.
The Navigator is a solid and well-built rig with an Australian Hitech Engineering chassis built of BHP dual-grade high tensile steel, and the aluminium cladding is stuck solid with Novatio MS22 polymer adhesive.
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
Adding to that is the Vehicle Components CRS suspension, rated higher (3200kg) than that needed for this on-road van, setting it up to handle harsher conditions, even some outback roads.
And it certainly ticks the boxes for intended touring; the bright white aluminium cladding with full insulation is strong, and the high silver checkerplate front offers good protection.
Apart from the lack of solar panels (although the van has been pre-wired for solar), the Navigator is well set up for remote camping, including two 9kg gas cylinders and ample water provision with its 190L tank capacity.
It also has a lot going for it with other internal features, such as pull-down mesh screens and block-out blinds to all windows, LED reading lights at the dinette and bed head, a laminate kitchen splashback, and brushed stainless powerpoints and switch overs.
I was impressed with the full marine ply floor with waterproof membrane. Subsequently, there was no ‘trampoline effect’ as you stepped inside and walked around. Externally, I also liked the look of the Dibond panel on the rear of the van, fitted with the tail-lights. A mini hatch with LED strip lights fitted into the wall above the bed was another nice touch.
In terms of innovation, the Navigator’s design is pretty stock standard. But outside I liked the marine hatches to all storage compartments and dual brightness high-output LED light bars in the galvanised-lined front boot.
HITS & MISSES
- Competitive pricing
- Lightweight ply cabinetry
- Premium sealing
- ‘Sticky’ cabinetry
- Light on innovation
COMPASS NAVIGATOR SPECS
Weights and measures
- Overall length 7.71m (25ft 4in)
- External body length 5.8m (19ft)
- External body width 2.5m (8ft 2in)
- Travel height 3.15m (10ft 4in)
- Internal height 1.94m (6ft 4in)
- Tare 2080kg
- ATM 2480kg (variable)
- Ball weight 200kg
- Frame Meranti
- Cladding Low profile aluminium
- Chassis SupaGal-coated Australian Hitech Engineering
- Suspension CRS coil suspension
- Brakes 10in electric
- Wheels 15in alloy
- Water 2x95L
- Battery 120Ah AGM
- Solar Provision only
- Air-conditioner Aircommand Cormorant
- Gas 2x9kg
- Sway control No
- Cooking Swift 500 Series combo four-burner cooktop with grill
- Fridge Thetford 184L three-way
- Microwave Sharp Carousel
- Toilet Thetford C200 CS
- Shower Full fibreglass
- Lighting 12V LED
- Hot Water 26L Swift
Price as shown
- $61,990 (on-road, Vic)
The full test appears in Caravan World #545 January 2016. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!