Some years back, we reviewed Bürstner’s Lyseo T 744, the first of the German manufacturer’s ‘vans based on the ‘three rooms’ concept – a defined lounge/bedroom, kitchen and washroom.
We liked it, although we were aware that at 7.49m long and with an MTPLM of 4250kg, it wasn’t suitable for all. Then we heard Bürstner was bringing out a shorter version, only 6.99m, and in UK-friendly Harmony Line spec. After more than a year of lockdowns, we finally managed to view one at Chelston Motorhomes, in Somerset.
To be fair, with half a metre less to spare, the 644 isn’t strictly speaking ‘three rooms’. The washroom is spread across the ‘van behind the standard Fiat Ducato cab, but everything else is really in one ‘room’, which includes a UK-friendly rear lounge.
That means the two extra travel seats are right at the back – not ideal if you are travelling with very small children.
Enter the lounge via the habitation door and you’ll find that door fitted with handy trays and baskets. There is a cocktail cabinet next to this, along with a shoe cupboard, plus Bürstner’s instantly recognisable control panel and cubbyholes with USB ports.
The U-shaped lounge can seat six, although the pedestal table only really has places for four to eat. The chocolate-mousse-coloured décor feels cosy, but daylight is a little restricted by the drop-down bed. Six LEDs below the bed, and ambient light, should help to warm things up at night.
Bürstner has located the sliding spotlights beyond the bed – on the 744 it was easy to forget them when lowering the bed, and they are fragile.
One of these lights is included above the sink in the side kitchen, which could be annoying for taller people.
There isn’t a huge amount of work surface in the kitchen – there is no extension flap. You could make use of the space above the fridge, as long as the TV does not get in the way.
There is a second mains socket here and you might have to use this for the kettle – there’s no socket in the kitchen. The nearest is between the wardrobe and the cupboard, to the right. But this involves trailing a cable across the hob.
That hob has three gas burners, and there’s a combined oven and grill; you also get an extractor fan, even with the large window.
A big mirror faces you when you open the door to the transverse washroom. There is a towel ring on the other side, which means this area, lit by two LEDs, can serve as a changing area, although perhaps not a dressing room; the only wardrobe is in the main lounge.
The offside shower is well lit and ventilated, with two drain holes. The basin might be a bit shallow for some.
There is a large shelf with a mattress behind the rear lounge – you can drop the bed level with this shelf to make a huge in-line double. Leave it halfway down and a second double is made using the table and some infill cushions.
The drop-down bed only leaves room for small overhead shelves in the lounge, but there are shallow cupboards either side of the rear mattress. Areas under the side seats are partly taken up with the heater and water tank, although there is some space for storage. The area under the rear settee provides wide access to the garage at the rear, but there are no internal-access doors to these areas, so you have to lift base cushions and boards to reach them.
There’s more storage in the wardrobe and a shelved cupboard underneath, although both cupboard and the pan locker below the oven are partially obstructed by the gas bottle locker.
Overhead lockers in the kitchen are a good size, and unobstructed by the extractor fan, and there is a good set of drawers here. The two cupboards in the washroom are more than adequate.
PRACTICAL MOTORHOMES SAYS…
Shorter versions of successful models seem to be the in thing with Continental manufacturers at the moment: both Chausson and Pilote do something similar. With this ‘van, you lose out slightly on the ‘apartment’ feel of the 744, but you gain almost as much in having a shorter vehicle. Storage could be more accessible and perhaps a bit more generous, however.
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The washroom is spread across the 'van behind the standard Fiat Ducato cab, but everything else is really in one 'room', which includes a UK-friendly rear lounge
|Shipping Length||6.99 m|
|Engine Size||2300 cc|