Rimor Sailer 687 TC

By: Lawrence Schäffler


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Rimor’s new Sailer 687 TC will appeal to explorers in many ways, but particularly for the cavernous locker at the back of the vehicle. It’s perfect for carrying bicycles, an inflatable dinghy or even a motorbike.

Rimor Sailer 687 TC
Rimor Sailer 687 TC
  • Low profile aerodynamics make the Rimor Sailer a breeze to drive
  • Loads of room in the rear storage "garage"
  • Great visibility from the cab
  • The engine offers plenty of power, with added punch from the turbo
  • The layout is classy and practical

European brand Rimor is based in Tuscany and has been manufacturing motorhomes for some 30 years, with around 4000 units rolling off the production line every year.

Auckland’s Kiwi Leisure has been the exclusive Rimor distributor in New Zealand and Australia for five years, and in that time has sold around 40 vehicles here.

There are three series in the range – the Superbrig, Katamarano and Sailer – each with a broad diversity of models. The Sailers are considered Rimor’s top-of-the-line motorhomes and are distinguished by their low-profile lines – thanks to the lack of the overcab berth.

The 687TC presents a classy but pragmatic interior layout with all the mod-cons you’ve come to expect in a modern motorhome. But it’s perhaps best known for the "garage" it carries at the rear – a vast locker (the width of the vehicle) accessible from both sides.

The locker easily accommodates two bicycles, and is equipped with ring bolts, so it’s easy to secure bicycles or a motorbike.

Driving ease

With an overall length of 7.13m the 687 TC is one of the largest Rimors, but driving is a simple, seamless step-up from your family sedan.

It’s built on Ford’s popular Transit 350 chassis, and with the predominantly fibreglass construction, weighs in at 3500kg.

Power’s delivered by a four-cylinder, 140hp, 2.4-litre turbo-charged diesel, married to a six-speed manual gearbox with rear wheel drive (the dual sets at the rear provide plenty of traction).

At 2500rpm in sixth gear the Sailer cruises serenely at the legal speed limit – and there’s plenty in reserve. I took it up a number of twisting hill climbs, and the turbo’s punch is readily available. The fuel tank holds 80 litres.

Power steering and ABS brakes complement the driving equation – it’s a pleasure to drive, with great visibility, especially through the cab’s (electric) low-cut side windows.

The cab’s spacious, with a sensible, practical layout of dash instruments. The driver’s seat is multi-adjustable. The only issue I found a little awkward was using the radio’s remote volume/channel controls, located right under the steering wheel rim.

Both front seats swivel 180 degrees, transforming the area behind the passenger seat into a lounge for four, complete with adjustable table.

Sleeping area

She’s designed to sleep four in two double berths – the dinette area and its two bench seats morph into a double berth, and the second is at the rear. They’re both generously proportioned (the front measures 2200mm x 1250mm, the rear 2200mm x 1300mm).

The rear berth is accessed via a aluminium ladder that stows neatly in a horizontal locker under the berth. Buyers also get to choose the height of the berth. The highest option gives you more room in that superb rear locker below, but will compromise you ability to sit up in bed. The lower option (down 300mm) offers less room in the locker, but great for reading on a rainy day.

Just forward of the rear berth is the bathroom that features a separate shower stall. The standard cassette toilet (15-litre capacity) is complemented by a stylish vanity. The Sailer carries 100 litres of fresh water, and it’s heated by gas (the motorhome carries twin 13kg bottles). The grey water tank also holds 100 litres.

Standard Sailers aren’t equipped with an LCD TV screen or DVD player (optional extras), but it does come with plenty of battery power and electrics. Along with the engine’s start battery is a house battery (105 amp-hour), and they’re regulated automatically to optimise charging. The house battery is also connected to 240-watt inverter for powering 240-volt appliances.

My favourite feature of the Sailer is the small, discreetly-mounted LCD control panel that gives you instant control over variables such as heating (supplied by a diesel-fired Webasto heater) and lighting – as well as displaying levels in the various tanks.

The Sailer is also equipped with a remote control for adjusting outside and inside lamps.

A four-burner gas cooker and oven take centre stage in the galley, and it’s surrounded by a stainless steel sink and mixer and good working surfaces. Both oven and sink have glass covers to increase the working area.

Just to the left is a 145-litre fridge (three-way power) with separate freezer. There are also plenty of lockers and parking feet.

In addition to the vehicle’s air-conditioning, there are three roof vents fitted with fly screens. Windows also have screens (and blinds), as does the main door.

To read in-depth motorhome reviews, see the latest issue of Motorhomes, Caravans & Destinations magazine, on sale now.

Specifications
(Price as reviewed - $157,000)

Chassis Ford Transit 350
Engine 140hp, 2.4-litre turbo-charged diesel
LOA 7130mm
Outside width 2340mm
Outside height 2920mm
Inside height 1995mm
Wheelbase 3954mm
Weight 3500kg
Diesel 80 litres
Water 100 litres
Waste water 100 litres
Dinette berth 2200mm x 1250mm
Rear berth 1300mm x 2200mm

 

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