Purchasing a Adria Coral XL 660 SCS slide-out

By: Jill Malcolm, Photography by: Jill Malcolm


In this monthly column, Jill Malcolm interviews the owners of newly purchased Adria Coral XL 660 SCS slide-out to learn how they made their decision

Stu Jeffs and his wife, Lynette McLaughlin, were living a well-organised life in suburban Wellington. Stu worked as a senior building surveyor and Lynette was an administrator at the Boulcott’s Farm Heritage Golf Club.

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The Adria’s roomy Luton is a handy feature 

And then came one of those events that can change life in an instant. Lynette was diagnosed with a form of heart disease. News like that brought into sharp focus what they most wanted out of life.

Lynette gave up her work and the couple decided to waste no time in pursuing their dream of travelling around New Zealand in a motorhome.

Tell us about your camping/ RV experience so far.

We are relatively new to motorhoming and we are enjoying the lifestyle immensely. We have travelled from Wellington up to Cape Reinga and as far as Christchurch in the South since we have had the motorhome, and feel we have only just scratched the surface of our journey. We travel with our e-bikes, which we use to explore wherever we stop. They’ve turned out to be the best extras we bought.

Why did you decide to buy a motorhome?

It had been our dream for many years. Making it a reality has been such a privilege. We often pinch ourselves to check if it is real!

How did you go about working out what you wanted?

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The headroom gives the interior a feeling of space

Stu has been researching for many years. We went to shows and sale yards and trawled the internet and were lucky enough to borrow a couple of motorhomes from family and friends.

All this cemented our ideas. Some of the non-negotiables were; plenty of ground clearance and a large boot for our folding bikes; adequate heating, a decent sized bathroom, separate shower, a comfortable bed and, because Stu is 6ft 2, we needed good headroom.

Why did you finally decide on this make and model?

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Lynette is delighted with the comfortable and roomy island bed

We saw the Adria Coral XL 660 SCS slide-out at the motorhome show in Christchurch and it ticked all the boxes. It’s built on a high Fiat chassis with a powerful 2.3-litre engine and 180 hp.

The length of 7.5 metres increases to eight metres when the ingenious, rear slide-out for the bedroom is in use. The payload is a huge 990kg and there is good ground clearance for off-the-grid capability.

The Adria was built in Europe but designed particularly for Australia and New Zealand conditions. You can’t buy these same motorhomes in Europe. The rear slide-out island bed is larger than a standard queen-size and we can climb in and out of from our own sides without waking each other up.

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The Adria Coral XL 660 SCS slide-out is made in Europe for the New Zealand and Australian markets 

There’s also a large Luton bed over the cab. Because of the slide-out, the bathroom and shower spaces have plenty of room. And it has good headroom with additional height above the dining area so the whole interior feels spacious.

We liked the large motor, the air suspension at the back and the massive boot space. There were many extras included within the budget such as the microwave, air-conditioning and automatic steps for the habitation door.

What was the biggest challenge in choosing the right RV?

There were so many options! It was daunting to work through the enormous number of variations available in terms of make, layout and design, and keeping any decision within our budget.

How did you find the process of buying and the handover?

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Lynette and Stu are pursuing a long-held dream 

We bought the van new from Freedom RV in Christchurch. We were collected from the airport and found the process easy and friendly. The purchase itself went smoothly and the handover was comprehensive.

No offence to Neil Whithear and Ben Masters of Freedom RV, but we couldn’t wait to leave and get on the road! We camped overnight nearby as Neil had recommended, went back the next day to sort out a minor issue with the fridge and then left Christchurch for the West Coast.

Did you end up buying the RV you imagined owning ?

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The rear slide-out for the bedroom was one of the deciding features 

No... the layout is more simple than what we originally planned and we never thought we’d have a motorhome with a Luton cab-over. But it works well.

Would you do anything differently?

No not at all. We are very happy with our choice and encourage anyone thinking about taking the plunge to do so.

Is there anything about your new RV you’d change or improve if possible?

Maybe a table attached to the outside, but other than that we love everything just the way it is.

What advice would you offer others?

Do your research. Don’t be in a hurry. Ask others with similar motorhomes to share their experiences around what does and doesn’t work for them. Get the silicon spray coating to protect the paintwork. It is well worth the extra dollars.

What travel plans do you have?

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The couple intend to go on the road full-time 

We are working towards being on the road full-time by the end of this year. In the meantime we are preparing our home to rent. It’s very exciting. There is so much to experience and enjoy in our lovely country.

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