The Autocruise Jazz is a sound, well-designed and thoughtfully assembled van conversion. It’s easy to drive thanks to its compact, MWB proportions, and it’s easy to drive and to live-in and use, both day and night.
The Jazz is a sound, well-designed van conversion
It’s easy to drive and to live in.
Interior lighting is a little pallid and the make-up bed could be a little bigger.
The interior walls are upholstered with an oatmeal fabric that neatly complements the seating upholstery, and drop-in press-stud carpets give this ’van the kind of homely feel you might expect from a coachbuilt ’van.
As in its sister ’van, the Pace, the lounge floor in the Jazz is raised, ensuring the passenger seats are level with the cab seats, which is a major boon at mealtimes and when entertaining guests. It means that with both cab seats swivelled, the occupants won’t find their legs dangling.
One of the unusual, but rather classy, styling quirks across the Autocruise’s van conversion range – introduced prior to the buyout by Swift Holdings and thankfully continued – is the wood-look window ‘ledge’ to the lounge windows.
Two circular ceiling lights, a rooflight over the lounge, a directional spotlight over the half-dinette and spots over the cab seats make this a well-illuminated ’van, day or night.
Two ceiling speakers pipe music into the living quarters from the cab CD/radio player. A slide-out TV cupboard has its own space above the RIB seats, and has an extending mounting bracket for a 15in flatscreen TV that is good for viewing from both cab seats.
The dining table stows in the overcab locker while you’re in transit, and clips onto a wall-mounted rail when in use. With both cab seats swivelled it’s a perfectly serviceable half-dinette.
The electric control panel, which is positioned over the sliding door, is also very simple and intuitive to use.
At the rear, the kitchen and washroom are surprisingly spacious. On the driver’s side, the food-preparation surface tapers to a radiused point by the sliding entry door, making the most of the galley. A tambour door to the shelved area underneath this work surface means it doesn’t impinge on access to and from the kitchen.
A three-burner hob, separate oven and grill, and Waeco 72-litre fridge/freezer are set up in an L-shape, all beneath a sink with lid and drainer. A rather meagre striplight illuminates the latter, and there’s no dedicated extractor fan. Kitchen storage is ample, and includes a chrome-finish crockery rack.
Tambour doors to washrooms in compact ’vans are a good idea: they avoid the problem of an inward- or outward-opening washroom door, and deflect water so there are no worries about keeping them dry at shower time. The fold-down basin is fine as a space saver, if not the most practical for ablutions, and a separate shower head with its own mixer tap and slider bracket is sited in the corner of the room.
With the standard mirrored vanity cupboard, it’s a minimal and basic washroom, but offers enough leg room for comfort while seated at the swivel bowl Thetford. As such, it’s a serviceable and usable solution in a compact space.
Pleated windscreen and insulated side-screen blinds do the job of cabin privacy at night. The RIB seat squab rotates through 180 degrees, and the seat back through 90 degrees to create a flat and comfortable, if rather narrow, double bed. The wardrobe is sited above the foot end of the bed, which is fine, although a rather pointless infill cushion slots into place at the head of the bed to extend the sleeping area to 2m (6’5”). The trouble is that it rests on the cab seat pedestals, and without being hardbacked gives way at the slightest pressure.
Compact dimensions demand clever use of storage space. The Jazz goes some way to meeting this requirement: the wardrobe is sufficient for the clothing of two, there’s reasonable storage space beneath the RIB seat squab, the overhead lockers are deep and have push-button positive catches, and there’s a lidded storage rack by the lounge seat. There’s also storage space for valuables built into the floor underneath the half-dinette, which hides under the drop-in carpet, although it’s not lockable.
|Shipping Length||5.41 m|