Like its Autograph siblings, the Bailey Approach Autograph 730 offers an exhaustive specification list for a hyper-competitive price tag. It’s also vastly spacious, with a huge ‘spare’ bed, so the lack of additional belted travel seats is frustrating.
It’s ideal for couples
Luxurious bedroom area
External access to underbed storage area
Front double bed is 2.23m (7’4
Plenty of light
Alde wet central heating
No reversing camera
Fixed bed is only 1.77m (5’10
Only two travel seats with seatbelts in this four-berth
Since it introduced its first motorhome in 2011, development at motorhome and caravan-maker Bailey’s Bristol manufacturing base has been frenetic. Two years ago came the Approach Autograph range, along with the more car-park-friendly Compact, and this year the firm launched the entry-level Approach Advance range.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that changes to the top-spec Autograph for 2015 have been minimal. There’s a switch to the new Peugeot cab, and the arrival of a new layout, the four-berth Bailey Approach Autograph 730.
At the time of its launch and our test, the Approach Autograph 730 starts at £46,965 on the road, and our test vehicle cost £47,373.
With large side and rear windows it makes a luxurious master suite
In the lounge, you might be forgiven for thinking that you’re in one of Bailey’s top-spec caravans. And this is not accidental – with its front parallel lounge, central kitchen and washroom, and rear transverse bed, the 730 will tempt those looking to chug instead of tug.
It works well, too. The lounge feels huge thanks to the Autograph’s 2.4m (7ft 11in) width, and to our eyes the optional (£199) ‘Piccadilly’ upholstery works better in a larger ’van. We’re less keen on the flimsy table, though, which is stored under the rear bed.
You’d be hard pushed to find fault with the roomy kitchen. Worktop and storage space are superb.
The microwave is concealed in a cupboard, though we’d rather it wasn’t directly over the four-burner dual-fuel hob, which tops the separate oven and grill.
Central wetrooms can feel pinched, but not this one. The fully lined cubicle has ample space for dressing or showering, with a curtain you can pull round to avoid soaking the whole room. There’s also a window
and a radiator in here.
The pièce de résistance is the transverse island bed – fitted with the optional (£209) bespoke bedding set on our test ’van. With large side and rear windows it makes a luxurious master suite, as long as you’re not tall: the bed is compact at 1.77 x 1.32m (5ft 10in x 4ft 4in). Your guests will have no such restriction: the sofas make up a second double that’s a huge 2.23 x 1.21m (7ft 4in x 4ft). It’s just a shame there’s no screen to separate the two sleeping areas.
Throughout the ’van there’s enough storage space in the overhead lockers, plus a full-height wardrobe and bed boxes to seriously test its 433kg payload. The largest area is to be found beneath the fixed bed, accessed by lifting the mattress or using the huge external locker door.
Bailey has even added a couple of underfloor lockers for valuables – very handy.
|Shipping Length||7.62 m|
|Engine Size||2200 cc|