Andrew McPhee

See other motorhome reviews written by Andrew McPhee

Check out the Practical Motorhome Lunar Roadstar 900 review for the definitive verdict on this 'van

Design

The Roadstar 900 is a real luxury cruise liner, a mighty motorhome that makes its presence felt. At nearly 9m long, this is the largest Lunar Roadstar to date. It’s a tag-axle, overcab coachbuilt on the five-tonne rated Fiat Ducato cab, with Al-Ko chassis extension. Inside, it has a twin single bed, end-washroom layout with a number of intriguing features such as a diesel-powered central heating system and an options list which includes leather upholstery and air-conditioning in the living quarters.

The swish-looking graphics on the 900’s all-white bodywork are minimal and the motorhome looks well-proportioned from all angles. The ladder to the roof rack is located at the rear and there’s a facility to add a lock to the ladder. The drain taps for both water tanks are also at the rear, as are the corner steadies.

An Omnistor wind-out awning is carefully recessed so as not to spoil the exterior looks and a single key is all that’s needed for all the outside locker doors. The caravan door has a double lock and full-length flyscreen. The electric step automatically retracts and has an alarm signal that sounds if the ’van is driven away with the step extended.

Our test ’van came with a number of cost options including a reversing camera (£399), which is a useful addition in a vehicle of this size – an added benefit is that motorhome insurers now offer discounts for such fittings.

At the front, the discreet Power badge is a subtle reminder that under the bonnet sits Fiat’s 3.0-litre, 157bhp MultiJet engine.

On the road

The 157bhp MultiJet pulls like a train, which is hardly surprising when you note that the torque figure of 295 lb/ft is developed at just 1700rpm. The 900 copes admirably with all this power thanks to its tag-axle arrangement, which makes this one of the best-driving motorhomes we have ever encountered. It’s a pretty refined drive, too, only getting grisly when really pushed to the limit.

If you don’t fancy the six-speed manual transmission, Fiat’s ComfortMatic semi-automatic gearbox is now among the base vehicle options. Be warned, though, that this is not a vehicle for the economy-conscious motorcaravanner. Even a steady driver would only manage a fuel consumption figure in the low twenties.

One annoyance was the fact that nearly every single cushion – and there are plenty of them in this ’van – fell to the floor during transit. This may well be because the 900 as reviewed was still at its prototype stage.

Lounging & dining

Stepping inside this motorhome is akin to entering a world of leather. Actually, leather upholstery is a £1800 cost option but there’s no denying the ‘wow!’ factor it brings to the interior. This, and the unusual move of giving the interior walls a woodgrain finish, adds to the boat-like ambience.

The seating behind the driver, in the lounge area, can be used as a double-dinette or, quite cleverly, the forward seat base can be manoeuvred to create an L-shaped settee. Both of the cab seats swivel to face the lounge area, too.

The star turn in the living area is the Webasto heating system. It is fuelled directly from the base vehicle’s diesel engine and the system also provides the hot water. There’s even an anti-freeze setting which will ensure that the water in the boiler won’t ice up if the motorhome is packed away for the winter.

Complementing this superb heating system is the optional ceiling-mounted air-con unit. But this adds a further £1645 
to the price tag, which seems a little steep when you might expect a vehicle of this stature to come with air-con as standard.

There are loose-fit carpet overlays throughout but they seem to impede the use of the clever-ish seat box swivel. Then there's the rather small table that attaches to the wall, which means having to revert to the dinette layout come mealtimes. A larger, free-standing table would surely be more user-friendly. On the plus side, we liked the provision of two double coat hooks and a magazine pocket beside the caravan door.

Kitchen

The kitchen in the 900 comes fully equipped with all the latest gear and there’s plenty of storage space and a decent amount of worksurface, too. The Spinflo Caprice cooker has three gas hobs and an electric hotplate, although the splash guards do restrict the size and number of pots and pans that could be used at the same time.

The sink has a good-sized draining area and also comes with a glass cover, which complements the large expanse of worksurface provided to the right of the cooker. The cutlery drawer is not the largest, but the remainder of the lower-level kitchen storage space is superb and there’s plenty of it.

On the opposite side of the kitchen is a 150-litre Dometic tower fridge/freezer and there’s a Daewoo microwave behind the tambour door, above the freezer.

Sleeping

The twin-single-bed layout works well and production models come with sprung-interior mattresses. The single beds measure 1.81 x 0.70m, which seems a little small. However, the occupants will be able to watch TV from their beds and have access to the heating controls, too.

The overcab bed boasts an ambient strip of LED lighting and a small bedside cabinet. Occupants should not feel too claustrophobic, thanks to the two opening windows either end of the bed.

Making up the lounge double bed involves a few extra filler cushions as well as dropping in a piece of board.

Washroom

The washroom in the 900 is luxurious and comes complete with a separate shower cubicle. And once you have used one of these full-sized washrooms in a motorhome there is no turning back, no matter how good the campsite facilities!

A Thetford swivel-bowl toilet sits at the opposite end of the washroom to the shower, while the washbasin is offset in the centre. There’s no shortage of storage space here, either. Unfortunately, we found the amount of changing space you would expect in a motorhome of this size somewhat lacking.

Storage

With nearly a whole tonne of payload to play with, how can anyone have issues with the amount of storage space? Especially as it's likely there will only be two people on board most of the time. There is even a choice of exterior-access lockers.

Indoors, there is a generous wardrobe space with an additional three drawers, accompanied by a floor-to-ceiling shelved locker. The main bedroom area has a generous mix of his-and-hers double overhead lockers, and open shelving. There’s also space in the seat and bed bases. Oh, and there’s also the overcab bed area. You get the idea – there’s loads of storage space.

Technical specs

Sleeps6
Travel seats4
MTPLM5000kg
Payload970kg
Length8.82m28′11″
Width2.31m7′7″
Height2.97m9′9″
Waste water73L
External Options
Aluminium sidewalls, Integral awning, Electric step
Kitchen Equipment
Dometic Fridge, 3-burner gas with electric hot plate, Oven, Separate grill, Microwave
Washroom
Thetford C-250 toilet, Separate shower cubicle
Heating
Webasto water/space heater

Verdict

A bold statement of intent as Lunar develops an increasing portfolio of ’vans worthy of further investigation.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Big, brave attempt by a re-emergent UK manufacturer; unique layout; superb to drive.

Cons

  • There's no shortage of alternatives (especially imports).
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