Benjamin DaviesSee other motorhome reviews written by Benjamin Davies
Check out Practical Motorhome's Niesmann+Bischoff Arto 74 LEGB review for the verdict on this luxury ’van that's perfect for comfy, year-round touring
Niesmann + Bischoff, part of the Hymer Group, produces high-end, A-class motorhomes. Formerly a Brownhills brand, it returns to the UK for the 2010 season thanks to sole importer Travelworld RV in Telford.
Built on the 5-tonne Fiat/AL-KO tag axle chassis, it’s powered by the 3.0-litre 160bhp MultiJet engine, which makes for a fabulous drive, ironing out all the bumps in the road.
It has a silver-painted one-piece shell, a 4m awning, a huge double floor that carries all the tanks, batteries and pipework for the onboard utilities, plus the kind of furniture that wouldn’t look out of place in a Chippendale showroom.
The floorplan was built exclusively for the British market, although the single entry door is on the UK offside. As a dedicated six-berth, it has a pair of forward-facing three-point belted seats in the L-shaped lounge and also in the rear U-shaped lounge. It’s a very Germanic take on a UK layout, our only reservation being the fixed tables with sliding, extending tops in both lounges, which may deter those who prefer more open-plan lounging. Both lounges convert to double beds, making use of those fixed tables as bed bases.
Specification is high as you’d expect: an electrically-lowered blind screens off the cab window at night; the ISRI cab seats are fully adjustable; a flatscreen TV raises from behind the driver-side sofa; there’s leather upholstery throughout, plus cab air con and cruise control, but no habitation air con and no reversing camera.
A Dometic tech-tower fridge-freezer, with an oven above it, dominates the kitchen area, and the kitchen base units have a central locking system for a quieter and safer drive. The star feature of the plush washroom is the cylindrical shower cubicle.
Storage may be an issue for a family of six, with the compact rear garage only really suitable for chairs, ramps and so on, but not for bicycles with removing wheels.
A truly luxurious ’van fit for serious all-weather touring, and a good stab at a UK-friendly layout. Check out the impressive innovation in the 2010 models, too.
- Layout should appeal to British buyers; luxurious interior; high specification
- Storage is a little sparse for six; the fixed tables eat up a lot of the lounge space