Avida Esperance 50th Anniversary B7943: Review
The recipe for the Avida Esperance is pretty well perfected in the 50th Anniversary model.
The 50th Anniversary Esperance is built on an Iveco Daily 50-170 chassis which, for the most part, is a good match. With past Ivecos, the AMT gearbox wasn’t particularly smooth in the lower range changes so, like many of my RV colleagues, I’ve been eagerly awaiting the new model Iveco Daily with the fully-automatic eight-speed gearbox.
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
There are no surprises in the construction department. The Esperance is built in a similar fashion to most Avida motorhomes, using a fully-welded metal frame for the walls, floor and roof. The frame has a foam sheet filler which is designed to act as both an insulant and a road noise reducer. All the walls are laminated together with backing panels and an outer fibreglass skin, except for the front Luton peak/cab surround, rear wall and roof which are fully-moulded fibreglass.
Underneath, the one-piece floor panel has a ply timber sheet above and metal sheeting below for under-floor protection. Like many a good motorhome, this one comes with an entertainment unit, complete with 240V/12V sockets and external speakers. In addition, the 50th Anniversary special includes a second flatscreen TV for outside use as the one inside is fixed in position.
Three bins along the offside and two along the nearside offer generous storage space. Some are dedicated, like the offside gas bin and the nearside battery storage compartment. Alongside the batteries the adjacent bin contains the charger, inverter and fuse panel.
For the 50th Anniversary model, Avida has included some special items such as leather seats with a special embroidered logo, a slate metallic glossy finish on all the doors and a silver finish on the walls.
All the windows, except the venetian-fitted kitchen, have day/night shades. Most of the major controls and light switches are by the entry door, some lower down for easy access from outside and some, like the main control panel on the end of the overhead lockers, are better accessed from inside. There is no shortage of light fittings – ceiling downlights, reading lights and concealed LED strip lighting are everywhere, allowing you to create an ambience to your liking.
With the bed up out of the way, there almost seems to be an excess of space in the lounge. It consists of an offside, sideways-facing lounge that sits opposite a TV cabinet and both cab seats, which swivel around. There is plenty of room to stretch out and relax in front of the TV, which is hidden in the nearside cabinet and rises into position at the push of a switch. The TV can also be easily seen from the bed.
HITS & MISSES
- Eight-speed gearbox
- External colour/decal scheme
- Overall storage and load capacity
- Versatile front bed/lounge
- Kitchen cupboards and drawers
- 12V/5V charging point location
- Security door not standard
- Bed reading lights hard to reach with bed lowered
- 12V fuses are awkward to get at
- Driver’s seat/handbrake conflict
AVIDA ESPERANCE 50th ANNIVERSARY B7943 SPECS
Weights and measures
- External length 7.93m (26ft)
- External width 2.5m (8ft 2in)
- Internal height 2.02m (6ft 7in)
- Travel height 3.15m (10ft 4in)
- Tare 3880kg
- GVM 4490kg
- Base vehicle Iveco Daily 50-170
- Engine 3L turbodiesel
- Gearbox Eight-speed full auto
- Max power 125kW @ 2900-3500rpm
- Max torque 430Nm @ 1500-2600rpm
- Brakes ABS ventilated disc
- Water 100L (fresh); 100L (grey)
- Batteries 2x100Ah
- Solar 2x80W
- Air-conditioner Truma Aventa
- Gas 2x4kg
- Cooking Dometic four-burner, grill and oven
- Fridge Dometic RM8555 190L three-way
- Microwave Samsung
- Toilet Dometic cassette
- Shower Separate cubicle
- Lighting 12V LED
- Hot water Truma 14L
Price as shown
- $175,200 (on-road, NSW)
The full test appears in Caravan World #548 April 2016. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!