German manufacturer Hobby is the world’s biggest touring caravan manufacturer, but also does a decent sideline in motorhomes. Today, Hobby boasts a 25-strong UK dealer network, and will exhibit 15 motorhomes on its stand at the NEC Show.
For the 2012 season there are 21 models across five ranges: Van, Siesta, Van Exclusive, Toskana Exclusive and Sphinx.
Although the Hobby line-up will be available on Ford and Fiat Euro 5 engines, there are four Limited Edition models, which are rebadged 2011-season run outs on the outgoing Euro 4 Transit.
There are also four all-new models: the Ford Transit-based Siesta range has three new low-profile floorplans, including the UK-minded 65 UC, with a rear U-shaped lounge. The fourth all-new model is the Van Exclusive 60 KL.
Swivel cab seats are lowered in the Transits by 35mm, which is good news for taller drivers, while rear passenger comfort hasn’t been neglected either: backrests feature a revised, ergonomic shape. There’s also a new washroom design, too.
All Exclusive models get new height-adjustable armrests for the rear passenger bench, and a fancy ‘telecentre’ that integrates with the Dometic Tec Tower. Also, exclusive to Hobby is a new Slim Tower fridge, in a number of its Siesta and Van Exclusive models.
What you needto know
The Siesta 65 UC may prove a hit in the UK. It features an inward-facing single-seat sofa up front, and a rear U-shaped lounge; although the caravan entry door stays on the UK driver’s side. Of the two other new Siestas, the 65FL has a French-style bed and the TL has single beds.
The Van Exclusive 60 KL stole the press preview show with its daring innovation.The Toskana Exclusive 750H from last season (the one with the rear U-shaped lounge beneath an electrically operated drop-down bed) is now known as the H75 UC, and still features its entry door on the UK’s driver’s side.
Finally, we were given a glimpse of a stunning prototype for the 2013 season, with flush-fit windows. The future’s bright for this German brand.
Must-see new ’van: Van Exclusive 60 KL
This Ducato-based low-profile is packed with innovation. First, there’s the bed that folds down electrically from the driver’s side wall at the push of a button. Alongside the rear longitudinal bunk beds is a washroom with a sliding basin to maximise space. And rear passengers will welcome the rising, adjustable armrest and comfy, moulded backrest.