Andrew McPheeSee other motorhome reviews written by Andrew McPhee
Read more about the Dethleffs Globebus I 3 Luxus in the Practical Motorhome review
Not only is this new A-class under 6m long, but its svelte overall dimensions make it noticeably less bulky than competitors and on a par with the new breed of compact low-profiles, such as Hobby’s Van
It’s built on Fiat’s ‘special’ low chassis, with a wider rear track, and front and rear anti-roll axle stabilisers.
Even with Fiat’s smallest, 100bhp engine, it should travel motorways and mountain roads alike with minimal effort.
All A-class motorhomes benefit from the added comfort of a custom-built cab, but the Globebus Luxus will have none of the wallow and body roll to which these traditionally tall vehicles can be prone.
The Globebus tested here has the optional ‘Luxus’ pack, which includes rear corner steadies, insulated waste tank and about a dozen other, mainly cosmetic, upgrades.
Although the base price for the I 3 is just £38,487, there are many upgrades available, including three sidewall colours and two levels of winterisation, one with Styrofoam and fully insulated plumbing, the other with a Webasto cab heater and underfloor heating.
The generous payload is calculated to include fuel, water and gas supplies. There is one large, exterior storage locker beneath the offside of the rear lounge and this Luxus version also has a roof-rack. All UK models come with one cab door, on the driver’s side.
Despite a low overall height, interior headroom is 6ft 2ins. However, one disadvantage of having a large rear lounge in such a compact space is that the cab seats, normally a key part of any A-class lounge, are excluded by the centre washroom bulkhead, although the driver’s seat does swivel. Despite the step up to the rear lounge, it’s still a sociable space for four.
The drop-down overcab bed is optional, and this would allow couples to have a large bed each. Alternatively, the lounge can be made up into two singles or a double bed.
Dethleffs’ designers have tackled the problem of the small washroom by using a swing-wall design that helps provide a larger shower space.
The kitchen, like the washroom, is squeezed into a small space, with no worksurface other than the lounge table and there’s no oven as standard.
Overall, the Globebus has a competitive level of specification, given its low price. It’s also possible to specify an equivalent level of equipment to Hymer’s and Bürstner’s entry-level A-class. However, neither of them offers the compact, end-lounge layout, or the particularly narrow body shape of the Globebus.
Dometic Fridge, 3-burner gas hob
Thetford C-200 toilet
Easy to drive and park, with the pleasant ergonomics of an A-class, this Dethleffs offers a lot of living space in a small package, with excellent options for personalisation and winterisation.
- Level of customisation
- No kitchen worksurface
- No oven