Trail-lite's Interior Design

By: David Linklater, Photography by: David Linklater

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What makes Trail-lite interiors the best in the business? We spoke with the innovative brand’s interior designer, Victoria Scott...

Trail-lite's Interior Design
Trail-lite's Interior Design

There's something that makes Trail-lite a bit special among Kiwi motorhome makers. Or rather, someone: Victoria Scott, the company's very own interior designer. Her primary role is to work with customers in specifying the decor packages of their new motorhomes – particularly the high-end Landmark series, which offers what is essentially a blank canvas to work with. But she also works closely with the engineers and builders at Trail-lite to develop new interior architecture themes and systems across all the company's ranges.

Scott trained in Sydney early in her career, has studied everything from curtain-making to European architecture and until last year ran her own design store. So why motorhomes?

"By the time I closed my shop in early 2009 I had already been working with Trail-lite for a couple of years. I just found motorhomes a real challenge compared with the houses that I had been doing before [and still do on a part-time basis]. In a house, you can get away with most things. In a motorhome, everything from the kitchen to the lounge is essentially within one room and it's much more demanding.

"When I started, the challenge was taking motorhomes from where they were – which was basically a 1970/80s caravan look – through to what we have now."

Scott argues the clean, classy interior ambience of Trail-lite's current lineup puts the company in a fashion-forward position among its rivals - both local and international.

"There are some in Europe catering to this market, but they're a small pocket. Most American companies still present the old style of decor.

"Our latest look simply takes what we've been doing already, to the next level. The larger units in particular are now more like a version of your own home, rather than a bach for example," says Scott. "We worked on those developments for a while and did a lot of research."

Examples included getting composite benchtops in, which Scott says "was a big thing for me personally. The lacquered surfaces, alloy extrusions...things like new bathroom sinks, which were probably the biggest cause of complaint from customers in previous ranges. They looked great but were very small: guys couldn't shave in them, or you'd wash your hands and water would go everywhere. But we've finally got new Italian bowls and they're great.

"That's the challenge of the job a lot of the time: finding something that works but is also in proportion to the size of the room. Working around those kinds of challenges is what keeps me on my toes."

Naturally, interior design is always evolving: "We're already working on the next Trail-lite generation," says Scott.

But it's not always evolving at the expense of the older product. A growing part of the Trail-lite business is focused on makeovers for existing customer vehicles.

"There are increasing numbers of customers coming through who don't necessarily want to upgrade their entire motorhome, but for $7000-$10,000 they can change their soft furnishings and pretty much get a whole new look. Upgrading things like curtains and squabs in such a small space can have a dramatic effect.

"We haven't really marketed that makeover business as yet, but I see it ultimately being a proper little cost centre all on its own."

See a range of Trail-lites for sale.

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