Andy Jenkinson

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In a very crowded market, Camper King stands out, offering a bespoke van conversion on pre-owned VW base vehicles. Andy Jenkinson steps inside

Overview

About 10 years ago, campervan convertors using the VW as a base tended to be quite thin on the ground. Over the past two years, that's all changed, and now it seems everybody is converting the VW T5/6 into living accommodation.

It's rapidly become a very crowded market, but one of the names that stands out is Camper King. This convertor has been using VW since 2003 and, over that time, has established an enviable reputation, building on pre-owned VW T5s, sourced by them, to offer customers a new build on a used van.

Based in the Cotswolds, Camper King has a selected dealership network and we visited Stewart Longton Motorhomes, one of their main dealers, who have seen Camper King sales climb.

The showroom has sample shades of colours and alloy wheel designs to provide potential buyers choices on special custom orders.

So is Camper King the king of campers? We took a close look at the new Monte Carlo to find out.

Design

Our pure white Monte Carlo was classed as the 'powder blue edition', with blue as the main theme.

The condition of the VW was 'like new' and, with its smart white alloys and body, colour-coded bumper/grill and side mirrors, it was really rather impressive.

The Monte Carlo also comes equipped with side awning and barn doors.

The extending roof doubles up for headroom, as well as housing the extra bed for two. The exterior mains socket and water inlet are placed on the offside.

Access is via the side sliding door and inside, you'll find the tried and tested layout, with offside kitchen and central lounge.

The cabin comes with full air conditioning and the front seats swivel around to face the living section.

The interior looks literally cool, its pale blue colour matching the exterior tones. Overall, fit and finish are very impressive, with excellent build quality.

Lounging & dining

The Camper King has five belted seats - very useful for everyday transport use.

The seating is comfortable and there are two more seats with storage at the rear of this roomy camper. There's a cupboard/wardrobe on the offside and more storage below the front lounge seats.

Kitchen

The side kitchen offers good overall storage; in a short wheelbase, you are a little restricted. The work surface is generous, though, even with the combined gas hob/stainless-steel sink unit. These also have glass covers to extend the work surface when they are not being used.

There is good overhead roof locker and cupboard storage, which allows plenty of scope for longer tours.

A combi oven/grill is fitted and a small fridge, and with LEDs below the lockers, night lighting is excellent. You'll also find twin mains sockets and the control panel for the electrics here, and the mounting for the table. It can be moved to the front or rear as needed.

Sleeping

The Camper King comes with a fold-out crash-tested double bed, which makes up easily. It feels comfortable so should provide a very good night's sleep.

Above, the other double bed is available to make up four berths, although we reckon most Monte Carlo buyers will be couples. But it's good to have it there as an option should you need it, say, for any grandchildren. Thoughtfully, the side windows are fitted with privacy glass and curtains.

Technical specs

LayoutCamper without washroom
Sleeps4
Travel seats5
MTPLM2800kg
Length4.8m15′9″
Width2m6′7″
Height2.1m6′11″
Engine (capacity)2000
Fresh water20L

Verdict

The beauty of the Camper King is the ability to add extras to suit your budget and needs. For the cash asked, it's easy to see why value is a main selling point, along with the endless colour choices for interiors and accessories.

PRACTICAL MOTORHOME SAYS:...

Camper King offers a super service if you want a new van conversion on a pre-owned VW base. The quality of build can't be faulted and the colour choices are brilliant. With several model line-ups, from economy to high-end, Camper King has it all covered. All in all, the Monte Carlo is a pretty good buy.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Five belted seats; generous kitchen worksurface

Cons

  • Limited space in wardrobe; fridge may be big enough for two but not four people