Andrew McPhee

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The experts at Practical Motorhome review the Auto-Sleeper Nuevo

Design

With its low profile, it’s easy to thread this ’van through urban obstacles and there’s less of a worry when approaching slope-sided underpasses. The Nuevo is low by comparison with most rivals, but, even with its lower overall height, the Nuevo does not compromise interior standing room, even for taller occupants.
It’s built using a GRP (glass reinforced plastic) overcab and roof section, with GRP side panels, and has colour-coded bumpers and side skirts. The bodywork has been fitted and finished to a high standard.
Decent insulation means it could competently tour in spring and autumn, but freezing weather may prove more of a challenge.
For getting in and out, there’s a manual folding side doorstep – an electric one is an extra, but more serious is that we found the door aperture rather narrow, especially when carrying shopping bags.

On the road

The Nuevo uses the Peugeot Boxer as its base. Power comes from a 2.0-litre turbo-diesel engine which turns out 85bhp and can be found wanting on steep roads. Upgrading to a larger engine in the Nuevo means a 2.2-litre turbo-diesel, at a cost of £1644.
Power reaches the wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox with the gear lever mounted high on the dashboard. It’s a cinch to reach but we wish the shift quality was slicker and the gate more clearly defined as it’s too easy to find fifth gear when aiming for third. ABS braking isn’t present, nor is it an option. However, there are electric cab door windows and mirrors, as well as a CD/radio. There’s a good mix of easy-to-read instruments, plenty of storage space in the glovebox and door pockets and a dash-mounted pop-up clipboard for maps. There’s also a 12V socket in the dashboard for charging a mobile phone or powering aftermarket satellite navigation.
On the critical side, the driving position shows up the age of the Boxer cabin and the steering wheel will not adjust sufficiently to allow a comfortable seating position for some drivers.

Lounging & dining

The fabrics and wood finish gives the Nuevo a pleasant, cosy atmosphere inside. Other than the narrow side door, access to the living area is easy.
Although buyers might only intend to sleep two people in this low-profile, they might still like to entertain friends and family, so plenty of seating space is essential. The Nuevo has two lounge seats – one on either side of the ’van – and this straightforward approach makes it easy to fit people in when entertaining. It also makes it easy to use the passenger’s rotating captain chair as a seat when dining. However, the table isn’t quite big enough to allow more than four people to dine simultaneously.
If you want to watch TV, there’s an aerial socket and plug point on the wall just behind the worksurface, on top of the fridge. This provides a sturdy platform but makes it more awkward for those seated on the left-hand bench to view the TV screen with ease.
If you prefer to read rather than watch television, there are two large side windows in the lounge area. You get a pair of good-sized lamps to illuminate the lounge and dining areas at night.

Kitchen

The kitchen is at the rear nearside. It offers a decent-sized workspace on the hobs and at the sinks, and plenty of kitchen cupboard space, crockery storage and cutlery drawers.
The fridge is beneath the worktop, but this means bending down to get at their contents. A splashguard protects the wall from hot oil and similar damage.

Sleeping

Creating the double bed is a simple matter of pulling the bases of the two benches together in the centre of the lounge area. This creates a large double bed in the Tracker, Sundance and Nuevo, but there’s no slatted base for the bed, which would reduce the effects of condensation.
When folding it all away, the upper bench cushions are lifted and the bases slid back into place, and the upper seat cushions placed down – all in a matter of seconds.

Washroom

The washroom is in the offside rear corner and is quite small. However, the sink is deep and there’s a decent amount of storage, so there’s enough room for toiletries and towels. You also get a towel rail and toilet roll holder. A simple shower curtain keeps the walls dry when it’s time to take a shower (and there’s room enough for that to be comfortable.

Storage

The wardrobe is in the main cabin, on the right-hand side just in front of the washroom. You store the dining table here when it’s not in use, and this pinches a little space.
There are useful lockers above the lounge area, as well as large lockers in the overcab section.
Beneath the lounge seats is a reasonably sized storage area. We were impressed with the simple gas strut that holds the seat base in the raised position while you are reaching into its under-seat lockers. Unfortunately, there’s no exterior access to them, however, so you’ll need to drag muddy hook-up cables into the van when packing them away.

Technical specs

Sleeps2
Travel seats2
MTPLM3300kg
Payload723kg
Length5.43m17′10″
Width2.49m8′2″
Height2.78m9′1″
Waste water38L
External Options
GRP sidewalls
Kitchen Equipment
Dometic Fridge, 3-burner gas with electric hot plate
Washroom
Thetford C-250 toilet
Heating
Truma Electric/Gas Blown air heater, Truma Electric/Gas water heater

Verdict

A very sound choice for those looking to tour for longer periods.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Well priced, with a high standard of construction

Cons

  • The narrow side door makes entry and exit awkward
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