What are the best motorhomes under six metres and why is it such an important measurement?

Six metres seems to be something of a Rubicon measurement for motorhomes. Stay under it and you should find it relatively easy to slip your vehicle into a parking space even in the most touristy of towns during high season. It might even fit on your drive. But go over it and, while you might have more room to move about inside, you will quickly start to find that parking becomes a much more laborious affair. And we won’t even mention ferry fares.

If you would rather keep life simple, here is our guide to the best shorter motorhomes out there, including van conversions, low profiles, and even the odd A-class.

Best motorhomes under 6m (metres)

Murvi Pimento XL

  • Price from £57,053
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 2
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.05/2.54m (Fiat); 5.98/2.06/2.58m (Ford)
  • Base vehicle Fiat Ducato/Ford Transit
  • Engine 2.3-litre (Fiat), 2.0-litre (Ford) turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3500kg
  • Payload 500kg

Don’t be misled by that “XL” tag. Murvi specialises in can conversions, and although this is the Pimento XL, it’s the longer version of what is a very short van. The Fiat vehicle it is based on is the long wheelbase version of the Ducato – which means it just comes in under the 6m rule.

Inside here you get two single beds that are surprisingly long when linked up with the swivelled cab seats, and a rear L-shaped kitchen which, like much else in this van, Murvi has made very customisable. There are a number of different hob and oven configurations, and, as ever with Murvi, there is a special place for the cutlery, crockery and glasses.

The gas tank is underslung too, so you don’t have any storage cupboards or lockers unduly compromised. And there is a good range of mains and USB sockets in here too.

Read our Murvi Pimento XL review

Adria Matrix Axess 520ST

  • Price £55,000
  • Berths 4
  • Belts 4
  • L/W/H 5.97.2.30/2.86m
  • Base vehicle Fiat Ducato
  • Engine 2.3-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3500kg
  • Payload 656kg

The 520ST is a classic example of how it is possible to get a huge amount inside six metres. The interior feels roomy because there is a drop-down bed over the front lounge, which makes up the second double.

But that means there is room in the back for a large L-shaped kitchen with direct access to the spacious garage at the back. That means you don’t necessarily need to head outside if there is something you need to retrieve and it is positively pelting down.

This layout sadly is only available in the Matrix cheapest Axess spec level, and as a result the kitchen could possibly be better equipped. But the washroom on the other side at the rear is another example in clever design, with a fold-up washbasin and a place to store the ladder for the drop-down bed so that it could possibly double up as a towel rack.

We think this is a must-see for anyone looking for a compact low-profile.

Read our Adria Matrix Axess 520ST review

Malibu Van Charming Coupe 600DB

  • Price from £48,950
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 4
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.05/2.59m
  • Base vehicle Fiat Ducato
  • Engine 2.3-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3300kg
  • Payload 525kg

Buy a Malibu and technically you are holding onto the fringes of luxury, because Malibu is the budget (-ish) sister brand to top-notch German brand Carthago. So you can expect high build quality and a pristine finish.
This model comes with a transverse bed at the back, a compact but well equipped kitchen, and a perfectly roomy front dinette. Its piece de resistance, however, is probably its washroom where you can slide away the loo to create a large shower area. Malibu claims it is the largest shower tray in this vehicle’s class.

Read our Malibu Van Charming Coupe 600 DB review

Elddis Autoquest CV60

  • Price £40,234
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 2
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.05/2.67m
  • Base vehicle Peugeot Boxer
  • Engine 2.3-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3500kg
  • Payload 654kg

The CV60, which is also available as a Compass Avantgarde model, really is a home from home within six metres. Because you get two lounges inside here. There’s a dinette up front, once you swivel the cab seats, with a pedestal table that provides a perfect place for a meal right next to the kitchen. Then further back, what looks at first like a French bed tucked into the rear offside corner can actually be rolled back to form a daybed. This provides the perfect place to relax and either watch the world go by, or watch the TV: the necessary sockets for a set are located on the sideboard that runs down the rear nearside.

The kitchen and washroom that sit between these two lounges are compact, but no more so than on your average van conversion. There’s plenty of space to store large items in the area under the bed.

No wonder this was our Motorhome of the Year for 2020.

Read our Elddis Autoquest CV60 review

Hillside Leisure Hopton

  • Price £53,995
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 2
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.04/2.69m
  • Base vehicle VW Crafter
  • Engine 2.0-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3500kg

Derby-based Hillside Leisure has built a popular reputation for making very liveable campervans based on the VW Transporter. The new Hopton model takes things up a notch, however, because it is based on VW’s newer and larger Crafter model.

The Hopton may only have two travel seats, but that’s because it features a large and comfortable rear lounge – something UK buyers in particular like to go for. It even includes fittings to turn the two parallel settees into a U-shaped seating pattern, if you would prefer.
The two settees can quickly be turned into single beds, or, with a little more effort, you can make up a double.

The side kitchen extends out a little way into the space for the sliding door to make more room. It even includes an induction hob.

The washroom is perhaps the only slight let down in an otherwise great two-berth, as there is only one drainage hole, no roof vent and no mirror. But at least the sliding door to it saves valuable space in here.

Read our Hillside Leisure Hopton review

Hembil Drift

  • Price £47,950
  • Berths 4
  • Belts 5
  • Length 4.89m
  • Base vehicle VW Transporter
  • Engine 2.0-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3000kg

Hembil is a standalone brand created by CMC Reimo, a Kent-based van converter that, as its name implies, has specialised in models with roofs made by German company Reimo.

The VW Transporter-based Drift was the first model the company produced under the new brand name, which was partly designed to give it some independence. Its innovation shows from the word go.
Not only does it have two sliding doors, but the kitchen which sits across the offside sliding door can be swung out so that it instantly becomes an outdoor kitchen complete with hob and sink. You do have to be on the tall side to use it effectively, but this does mean you can have an alfresco party at the drop of a hat.

Inside it is a more conventional VW-style layout, with a long bench seat across the back (as this is a “true” campervan you won’t find any washroom in here). But it is all nicely done out in a modern style, And whoever gets to sleep up in the roofbed gets their own light and a USB socket as well.

Read our 2019 Hembil Drift review

Roller Team Pegaso 590

  • Price £59,640 ex works
  • Berths 4
  • Belts 4
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.35/2.95m
  • Base vehicle Fiat Ducato
  • Engine 2.3-litre, 120bhp
  • MTPLM 3500kg
  • Payload 662kg

The Pegaso 590 is proof that you can still go for an A-class even if you have to restrict yourselves to 6m of length. And that’s not the only thing that makes it special either. Roller Team is currently the only A-class manufacturer who bothers to “flip” its models over so that they have the cab door on the right side for UK drivers. So if you are the driver you won’t need to hop over to the passenger seat, or walk back to the habitation door, to get out.

The four berths in here are all at the front, too: two in a double that drops down over the cab, and then a second double that you make up from the dinette.

That leaves the rear of the van for a sizable kitchen and a washroom spread across the very back that includes a separate shower and a wardrobe part of which is also accessible from outside.
In short, you will probably have to pinch yourself to remember that all this is included in just six metres.

Read our 2019 Roller Team Pegaso 590 review

Swift Escape Compact C402

  • Price £49,030
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 4
  • L/W/H 5.99/2.26/2.78m
  • Base vehicle Fiat Ducato
  • Engine 2.3-litre turbodiesel
  • MTPLM 3300kg
  • Payload 590kg

Swift’s Escape range was launched a couple of seasons ago as a more compact alternative to its then entry level Escape range – compact both in terms of length and width, and so designed to make narrow city streets and windy country lanes easier to negotiate.

The C402 and C404 share the same UK-friendly layout, with a rear lounge, the only difference being that the C404 comes with a drop-down bed over the lounge to make it a four-berth.

Without that encumbrance in the C402 you get more storage space with overhead lockers. And you still get a second dinette up front near the kitchen with two travel seats – which means you could easily use this vehicle as a day-to-day vehicle.

Read our 2019 Swift Compact C402 review here

Bailey Alliance SE 59-2

  • Price £50,629
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 2
  • L/W/H 5.99/2/28/2.76m
  • Base vehicle Peugeot Boxer
  • MTPLM 3500kg
  • Payload 812kg

The 59-2 end kitchen layout was added to the new mid-range Alliance range and to the slightly cheaper Advance range at the same time.
It’s a layout that works well, with two parallel settees in the middle that you can stretch out on, although because this motorhome is only 5.99m long they can’t double up as single beds. You do have to make the double, but that’s no particular bother.

The end kitchen is typically roomy, as is the corner washroom.

The extra spec on the Alliance compared with the Advance initially wasn’t all that game changing, but for the 2020 season all Alliances have been upgraded to Alliance Silver Edition (SE), complete with an attractive silver exterior. That might just tip it for you.

Rear our 2019 Bailey Alliance 59-2 review

Bilbo’s Nexa HL

  • Price £51,900
  • Berths 2
  • Belts 4
  • L/W/H 4.89/2.10/2.00m
  • Base vehicle VW T6
  • Engine 2.0-litre turbodiesel

Diehard campervan enthusiasts will probably be fuming that the Nexa HL from Bilbo’s, one of the UK’s most established van converters (and yes, it is named after the Tolkien character) now includes a cassette toilet in the rear.

But if you are a newcomer to campervans, you might rather enjoy this luxury.
The Nexa HL includes two travel seats in the back, so you can use it as a day-to-day van. These fold down into two single beds (or, an option a double) but there is no four-berth option. The sideway folding raising roof provides more headroom.

With a well equipped kitchen, this should be a cosy but comfortable van to go away in.

Read our Bilbo’s Nexa HL review here

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