Read the Practical Motorhome Mobilvetta Kimù 101 review to find out what the experts think of this carefully crafted, Italian motorhome
2006 has been, without exaggeration, a landmark in motorhome design. We may look back in 20 years’ time and consider the likes of Bürstner’s Mega Van, Knaus’ C-Liner and the Hymer Van as ‘year dot’ – as were the Bedford Dormobile and Autohomes Highwayman of the time, in their own humble ways.
The Italian Mobilvetta Kimù 101 is not radical in the same way as the aforesaid German trio – neither is it angular, garish and gadget-driven. The Kimù is a living, breathing, motorhome – one that has been crafted with the kind of loving care that most of us would have put in if we had designed it ourselves.
It’s not all prettiness, though. Aside from the obvious properties of protection against leaks and delamination, that body shell hides a substantial level of insulation, with wall, roof and floor thicknesses of 38mm, 38mm and 70mm respectively.
Take the one small step into the living area and you won’t find that it’s a giant leap for motorcaravanning kind. The low-slung chassis and inset double step provide an easy entrance. The windowed door, with its substantial insulation and twin locking points, keeps out the cold and other unwanted intruders.
On the road
A chunky steering wheel made from high-density rubberised foam and a six-speed, dashboard-mounted gear stick offer a surprisingly car-like driving experience considering this is such a hefty commercial chassis. Step out of the cab and you have the old-fashioned courtesy of a running board to ease you down to the ground.
Lounging & dining
Step inside and you notice fresh design thinking all around: graphite-coloured removable carpets contrast with light woods, brushed aluminium trim, and simply embroidered navy upholstery. It’s a very practical colour scheme that is bright enough even for winter light conditions, thanks to all that pale woodwork, yet with tough fabrics in no-nonsense dark colours that won’t show their age.
The longer you spend in this Kimù, the more you appreciate the practical details and overall finish: for instance, the neatly trimmed edges on all the furniture and a fabric-lined, neatly buttoned bed base at the rear. It is no surprise that Mobilvetta started out as a furniture manufacturer back in the 1960s. They started with the basics and made sure they never forgot them.
Just like its rear counterpart, the overcab double bed has a substantial latex mattress and a lot of headroom, with microfibre pads providing insulation and buffering to protect your head if you sit up suddenly in bed. There are switches here for the inset spotlights and the landing light, should you need to get up in the night and don’t want to step on the dog. Ducting from the diesel-powered Webasto heating system circumvents both berths and is tastefully concealed.
There’s plenty of storage space inside the van, too – beneath the kitchen, there’s a huge round-shaped cabinet as well as two large lockers above the kitchen. Two similarly sized lockers sit above the lounge, and an open shelf surrounds the rear bed.
Dometic Fridge, 4-burner gas hob, Oven, Separate grill
Thetford C-250 toilet, Separate shower cubicle, Bi-fold shower door
This is a high-class motorhome, with a price to match: £5 short of £50,000; or £4 if you take the £1 launch pack that includes awning, alarm, bike rack and TV aerial. Fifty grand is a psychological milestone that signifies A-class territory, yet we’re not a million miles away from the price of a Kon-Tiki, Cheyenne or Ecovip – and the Kimù 101 certainly looks built to last.
- Attention to detail
- The rear garage
- The motorhome's strong engine
- Not much – it’s a pretty well-integrated package