Regent Weekender: Review
With great storage space and a sleek design, the new Regent Weekender will have you hitting the road for a lot longer than just a weekend.
From the outside, the Weekender looks like a fairly traditional aluminium-clad caravan with a lower waistline of polished alloy checkerplate. It has a timber frame, constructed using finger jointed ply timber sheeting that is cut out with a CNC machine, thus using the overall strength of the water resistant timber sheet and reducing the number of standard fixing methods like staples, glue and screws.
DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION
The Austrail RV chassis can be optioned as either hot-dipped galvanised or DuraGal, the latter being the standard under this particular Weekender. It has standard 100x50mm (4x2in) main rails and the larger 150mm (6in) RHS for the drawbar. The drawbar is fitted with all the standard items – ball coupling, jockey wheel and two gas cylinders. At the rear, the looped end bumper bar is also the mounting point for the spare wheel. Roller rocker leaf spring suspension with a 50mm (2in) raiser is used for the 15in alloy wheels.
Instead of being in the front boot, the single 105Ah battery is mounted in a box in front of the offside wheel. There is also an Anderson plug located right by the battery box. And, although the van is pre-wired for roof-mounted solar panels, you could easily set up a free-standing solar panel next to the van and connect it via this socket.
Inside, there’s nothing too radical about the van’s rear bathroom, front bedroom layout, although there are a couple of cupboards in unusual positions. While I have to admit the glossy brown and white internal colour scheme didn’t do much for me, I have no doubt there are other options available to suit different tastes. And certainly one of the benefits of the glossy surfaces is that everything is very easy to keep clean.
I find the dinette offers a prime position for checking out any van layout. Apart from anything else, it gives you a few clues as to whether you might enjoy spending considerable time in a potential purchase.
In this case, the cafe-style dinette has ‘pillow-top seating’ for both the seat backs and against the wall. There are no footrests, but unless you have particularly long legs, that won’t be a problem. The tri-fold table can be lifted in and out, as required, and there’s a small cupboard under the table although, given the difficulty in accessing it, open shelves may be better.
Up front, the aforementioned, large windows give the bedroom area a bright and breezy look. All the requisite robes and overhead lockers are here around the 1.88x1.53m (6ft 2in x 5ft) island bed, which lifts, as usual, to get to the storage space underneath. Bed walk around space is better than average, even with the small diagonal cupboards in the corners at the foot of the bed.
THE WRAP UP
Designed for more than just weekend use, the Weekender has all the essential quality features required to hit the road for longer-term travel.
HITS AND MISSES
- Good space around the bed
- Useful cupboard by the entry door
- Electrical master switch by the door
- Full-height slide-out pantry
- LED lighting
- Keyless picnic table
- Fiddly under-seat access
- Windows are tricky to open
- No internal 12V/5V USB charger outlet
- Minimal kitchen benchtop space
REGENT WEEKENDER SPECS
Weights and measures
- Overall length 8.21m (26ft 11in)External body length 6.4m (21ft)
- External body width 2.44m (8ft)
- Travel height 2.9m (9ft 6in)
- Internal height 1.98m (6ft 6in)
- Tare 2120kg
- ATM 2520kg
- Ball weight 120kg (advised)
- Frame CNC machined, finger jointed
- ply sheeting
- Cladding Aluminium
- Chassis Austrail DuraGal
- Suspension Tandem-axle roller rocker leaf spring
- Brakes 10in electric
- Wheels 15in alloy
- Water 2x95L
- Battery 1x105Ah
- Solar No
- Air-conditioner Aircommand Cormorant
- Gas 2x9kg
- Sway Control No
- Cooking Swift four-burner and grill
- Fridge Thetford N604N.3F 184L
- Microwave Swift dLuxx
- Toilet Thetford cassette
- Shower Separate cubicle
- Lighting 12V LED
- Hot water Suburban 23L gas/electric
- Post-formed rolled edge benchtops; recessed cooktop; tube-style seating; pillow-top mattress; gas barbecue fitting; tunnel boot; looped rear bumper bar; offside Anderson plug; flatscreen TV and swivel arm; solar pre-wiring; external speakers; 50mm (2in) chassis raiser
Price as shown
- $59,990 (on-road, Qld)
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The full test appears in Caravan World #552 July 2016. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!