Review: UniCampa

By: Claire Smith , Photography by: George Novak


NZMCD heads to Tauranga to take a look at one of the new players on the New Zealand motorhome market, the UniCampa from Road Life

It’s always exciting to see a new range of motorhomes enter the New Zealand market, and one of the most recent is the Australian-made UniCampa.

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Distributed through Road Life in Tauranga, UniCampa is manufactured by Recreational Vehicle Industries Australia (RVIA), who has more than four decades of experience in designing and manufacturing RVs especially for the Australian and New Zealand environment.

The range is available from Road Life in Tauranga, headed by husband and wife Rhys and Michele Hunter. Rhys, who has a long history in the marine and recreational vehicle industries, says the UniCampa range has been designed to provide a high-quality build with all the essentials you need to enjoy the motorhome lifestyle, at a competitive price.

The range on offer at Road Life includes four models: two with drop-down beds, one with a fixed rear island bed, and the other with fixed rear singles.

Features across the Unicampa range

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Externally, each model includes a pullout entry step and grab handles for easy entry. A nice addition is the Fiamma awning, which is simple to wind out with support legs that can be clicked into place on the motorhome body or pegged down to the ground.

Inside, the bathroom and shower area in each model is constructed with single-piece fibreglass, which means there are no joins or sealant where mould or dirt can become trapped, making cleaning that much easier.

Large, double-glazed windows throughout add to the open, airy ambience of the UniCampas. Open them up in summer for instant ventilation or keep them closed in winter and enjoy the added benefit of double-glazing in keeping in the warmth. Being top-hung allows for opening in rainy conditions to maintain ventilation.

630-exterior

UniCampa motorhomes are supplied standard for the New Zealand market with Webasto 2kW diesel cabin heaters, which are cheap to run, as they don’t require a separate fuel source. They also have an efficient, continuous hot water system that allows you to heat water ‘on-demand’ from gas, much like you’d see in a modern home.

Each of the four models includes space over the cab, which can either act as extra sleeping accommodation for a small child or two or as additional storage space for bulky items. The addition of a sturdy cargo net keeps items securely in place while you drive. All four of the UniCampa models are available on a Renault Master chassis, with the 630 and 650 models also available on an LDV V80 chassis.

720-island -exterior

Rhys explains that LDV offers a reliable, competitively-priced solution for those looking to keep costs down. LDV is a division of Shanghai Automobile and Industrial Corporation (SAIC), the largest automotive manufacturer in China and one of Europe’s most recognised commercial vehicle brands.

In fact, they are the choice of the British government for use by the Royal Bank, Royal Mail, and even as travel vehicles for the British Royal Family. LDV has also been the recipient of numerous international awards, including Best New Van, Innovation Award, and Van of the Year.

Unicampa 630 front drop bed

630-bed -down

At 6.3 metres in length and featuring a front drop-down bed, the UniCampa 630 ticks plenty of boxes for couples and families.

Like all of the UniCampa models, the 630 includes a pullout step and grab handles for easy entry. The main door also has a nifty security feature, which allows you to keep the door locked but still enjoy extra ventilation on stuffy nights. With the flick of a lever, the door separates to reveal two large ventilation panels protected by high-security mesh, allowing fresh air—without the bugs—to circulate through the motorhome.

Externally, the 630 features good storage with a nice big hatch to make it easy to store large items such as outdoor chairs or the barbecue. On entering the motorhome, first impressions are of a crisp, clean open plan layout. Up front is a cafe-style lounge area with a removable positionable table, plus an adjacent double seat.

The forward facing seats include two seatbelts for extra passengers. Large double-glazed windows on either side of the lounge area add to the open, airy ambience and also include blinds and fly-screens.

630-lounge -kitchen

The drop-down bed located over the lounge area is simple to deploy with the push of a button. One of the great things about this type of bed is that it allows you to leave the bed made up; there’s no fussing about with putting away blankets in the morning and setting the bedding up again at night. It takes a matter of seconds to pop down the table and push a button to lower the bed. With the bed dropped, there’s additional ventilation from the roof hatch and dimmable light.  A smoke alarm and LPG sensor are also included as standard.

Moving into the rear, the L-shaped kitchen is finished in glossy white and is practical and modern looking. A full height Thetford fridge is included, which also includes a handy integrated lower storage drawer.

A full Thetford oven with three-burner gas hob and inbuilt grill is partnered with an overhead ventilation unit and a microwave to take care of your cooking needs. With a large double pantry against the back wall, plus a further three cupboards, a slide-out bottle/jar rack, four overhead cabins, and four drawers, the kitchen provides some seriously good  storage space.

Unicampa 650 rear drop bed

650-drop -down

At 6.5 metres, the UniCampa 650 features the drop-down bed at the rear, over a nice big U-shaped lounge. As with the 630, this means your bed can be left made up, saving time sorting blankets and cushions at each end of the day.

Externally, the storage beneath the lounge seats can be accessed from either side of the motorhome making it easy to grab out those outdoor chairs or the fishing rod when you stop for a picnic on your travels.

Inside, the open plan kitchen is amidships and includes a full oven with three-burner hob and good ventilation, thanks to the overhead range and window placement. The kitchen storage isn’t quite as generous as the 630 but adequate for a couple nonetheless. There is, however, some extra storage with a central wardrobe/cupboard opposite.

The 190L Dometic three-way fridge is specially made for Australian and New Zealand conditions, which means you can freedom camp in the middle of summer without having to worry about your frozen beans turning to mush.

Unicampa 720 rear single island or rear singles

720-island -lounge

For those looking for fixed beds, the 720 range offers either a rear island bed or twin singles. Up front, the spacious dinette lounge includes a positionable table, so you can position it to suit you. The central kitchen has sufficient storage for those shorter getaways.

720-singles-

In the rear island bed version, a full-sized, very comfy queen bed sits in the rear. And because the bed is extendable, it can be pushed back around 300mm to maximise leg space when it’s not being used. Generously sized his/her wardrobes with cupboards below are partnered with three overhead cabins providing good storage.

And the addition of carpet on either side of the bed keeps your feet warm as you get out of bed in the morning. The full-sized mattress is thick and comfy, and there’s plenty of storage beneath, which can be accessed from both sides of the motorhome exterior.

720-island -(2)

The UniCampa 720 with rear single beds features two single beds in the rear, each with inner-sprung mattresses for comfort and support. Handy storage hatches beneath the beds are handy for hiding away slippers, books, and other bits and bobs, and the mattresses also lift for extra storage which can be accessed externally. Between the beds, his/hers wardrobes plus draws and overhead cabinets provide extra storage.

Unicampa Specifications

Vehicle make and model

UniCampa 630 Front drop bed

UniCampa 650 Rear drop bed

UniCampa 720 Rear island bed

UniCampa 720 Rear single bed

Engine

Renault 2.3LTD LDV 2.5LTD

Renault 2.3LTD
LDV 2.5LTD

Renault 2.3LTD Renault 2.3LTD
Transmission 6-speed auto 6-speed auto 6-speed auto 6-speed auto
Berths 3 2 + 2 optional 2 2
Approx. overall length 6300mm 6500mm 7200mm 7200mm
Approx. overall height 3100mm 3100mm 3100mm 3100mm
Tanks

110L fresh, 120L grey

110L fresh, 110L grey

100L fresh, 130L grey

120L fresh, 120L grey

Gas 2 x 4kg 2 x 4kg 2 x 4kg 2 x 4kg
GVM

Renault: 3800kg LDV: 3499kg

Renault: 3800kg LDV: 3499kg

3800kg 3800kg
Price (as reviewed)

Renault: From $139,990, LDV: $129,990 incl. ORC

Renault: From $139,990, LDV: $129,990 incl. ORC

Renault: From $139,990 incl. ORC Renault: From $139,990 incl. ORC

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