HYMER IS ONE of the most recognisable motorhome brands in the world. A byword for German quality and innovation, the company is based in Bad Waldsee in Germany where it builds vehicles for its domestic market and many overseas territories. The company’s founder, Erwin Hymer, who died in 2013, could reasonably be considered the father of the European motorhome industry, building his first motorcaravan in 1961. His legacy looms large over the company to this day, and lends his name to the eponymous museum where Hymer holds its press events.
In recent years, Hymer has enjoyed a resurgence in the UK. The appointment of a new dealer network and some sharply focused products have helped build sales momentum in the past couple of seasons. Hymer has just appointed Travelworld in Telford to be an exclusive Hymer Group dealer, meaning it only retails Hymer motorhomes, plus those of wholly owned subsidiaries Niesmann & Bischoff and Carado, and offers full servicing and aftersales facilities.
The complete 2015 portfolio of Hymer motorhomes will be available in the UK, as right-hand drive or left-hand drive. The company sees Britain as an important market and is focusing more on it – NCC approval for all 2015 models will happen this year, says Hymer.
Another manufacturer with a big exposure to the Fiat Ducato base vehicle, Hymer’s 2015 line up sees a transition to the facelifted Fiat cabs, which bring safety systems including ESP, ASR and hill hold – plus other enhancements – into the feature set.
Hymer has been busy elsewhere, though, and has launched a new range for 2015 – the low-profile T-Class SL – plus unveiled an enhanced Premium Line version of its luxurious B-Class. There have been small specification tweaks to the Hymercar range of campers, and the introduction of a new model – the Sierra Nevada.
Carado, Hymer’s budget brand and a partnership with its subsidiary Dethleffs, receives some small changes for 2015. There are two new models, both of which will be coming to the UK. The T 334 is 6.99m long and features a rear transverse bed with spacious rear garage. The washroom is split across the ’van, with the shower on the UK nearside and the toilet opposite. A drop-down lounge bed can be specified as a cost option. The T 339 is the same length as the 334 and has a rear island bed, again with a split washroom. Carado prices have been reduced for 2015. UK dealers currently include Heart of England, Kimberley Caravans and Travelworld.
The Hymer T-Class SL is a new range that will sit one level above its close namesake, the T-Class CL, as Hymer strengthens its offering of semi-integrated motorhomes. The SL shares characteristics with the CL, but has a double floor for equipment and storage and a slightly higher specification. For user comfort, the habitation area in the SL is all on one level, with no steps to tackle once you’re inside the vehicle, and headroom is generous. The bodyshell is assembled using Hymer’s PUAL construction.
Interiors are bright and airy, with light-toned cabinetwork paired with high quality comfortable upholstery and white work surfaces. A brown section on the lounge’s overhead locker doors is referenced in the fascia of the fridge.
The T-Class SL kit list is extensive, with height-adjustable cab seats, LED lighting throughout, a winding rooflight and Truma heating. Kitchen worktops are finished in a mineral material, there’s both task and ambient lighting in the galley, plus a tall 142-litre fridge with 15-litre freezer compartment. Bedrooms have cold foam mattresses and the spacious rear garages have large doors on each side of the vehicles.
All models are two-berth with an optional single berth in the lounge, and all layouts feature twin single beds. Two models have midships washrooms, the 6.9m-long 568 and 7.29m-long 588, while the 7.49m-long 668 has an end washroom. The 704, at 7.79m the longest ’van in the range, has a washroom split across the vehicle. All T-Class SL models are 2.35m wide.
Hymer has also launched a new up-specced version of its popular A-class range. The B-Class PremiumLine is based on the Fiat Ducato with the 3500kg lightweight Al-Ko chassis, plus Goldschmitt coil springs fitted to the front suspension for a smoother ride. The new Fiat safety features (ABS, ESP and hill hold) all come as standard, plus there are heated wing mirrors and three-speed windscreen wipers. The habitation is made from Hymer’s PUAL body with GRP roofs and is step-free inside, built up from a double floor. Habitation doors have been enlarged, now 70cm wide.
Interiors use a mid-toned Palatino Apple wood finish, plus a new upholstery design using a light brown ‘Messina’ fabric. The beds are wide and accessible and washrooms feature large showers with generous headroom. Kitchens receive solid surface worktops, 143-litre fridges and a UK-friendly separate oven and grill (these are becoming more popular in Germany now, says Hymer). Water tank sizes have been increased, for both fresh and waste, and wide garage doors at the rear of the ’vans will facilitate easy loading.
Seven layout options are available. Buyers can choose between lounge beds (544), twin single beds (568, 588 and 704), rear transverse bed (594) or an island bed (598 and 708). All B-Class PremiumLine models are 2.35m wide; lengths range from 6.5m (544) and 6.99m (568, 594 and 598), to 7.27m (588) and 7.79m (704 and 708).
Hymercar also receives a refresh for 2015. Launched last autumn, this range of campers has two distinct offerings: one without washrooms based on the VW T5 and one with washrooms based on the Fiat Ducato. Buyers of the VW-based Capetown can now select the number of seats required in their vehicles, and seats can now also be retro-fitted. Clever arrangement of the furniture modules and the pop-top bed can give a headroom of 2.65m, allowing discrete living and cooking and sleeping areas.
Rear beds in the Capetown can now be removed when not required, thanks to the introduction of three loose upholstery parts. The resulting variable room layout allows users more free space, which can be allocated to storage if necessary – storage pockets, available as a cost option, can easily be attached to enable this.
Integrated roof beds can also be specified in three of the Fiat-based Hymercar models – Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and Serengeti – thus keeping the living and sleeping areas separate. The Ducato-based Rio additionally allows buyers to specify an optional pop-top with integrated bed. Ceilings and interior walls are now covered in fabric, to give better insulation and improved sound absorption.
These four models all take the new Fiat cab, which brings driver and front passenger airbags, ABS, ESP, traction control, cruise control, cab air con and a multi-functional steering wheel to the offering.
A new model, Sierra Nevada, will join the range at Düsseldorf’s Caravan Salon; no further details were available at the time of going to press.
In other news
The new Hymer Original range of products will allow customers to personalise their motorhomes with perfectly co-ordinated accessories. Available from official Hymer retailers rather than ex-works, these new OEM (original equipment manufacturer) products will complement the wholesale accessories distributed by Hymer subsidiary Movera, and will be available for all Hymer ranges.
Items like navigation systems, bike racks and cab carpets will be available, all the way up to a folding electric bike designed to fit in a motorhome’s rear garage.
One product to feature in the new range is a slide-out rack for rear garages. This allows users to load and unload camping kit at a manageable height outside the vehicle, rather than having to reach inside and rummage around.
Want more? Read our full 2015 preview of Continental motorhomes, learn about Adria’s 2015 range, Auto-Trail’s 2015 range, the new season ‘vans from Knaus, the 2015 line-ups from Auto-Sleepers and Roller Team, the 2015 range of Dethleffs motorhomes, including the entry-level Sunlight ‘vans, and get details of the new Swift motorhomes for 2015.