Niall Hampton
Editor

See other motorhome reviews written by Niall Hampton

Featuring the popular French bed/corner washroom layout, find out more about the Pilote Pacific P716P with Practical Motorhome's Editor Niall Hampton

Overview

The French bed/corner washroom layout is certainly well represented in today's motorhome market – buyers clearly like the convenience of a fixed rear bed and adjacent ablution facilities. But if faced by customers who don’t favour one brand, how does a manufacturer offering this floorplan stand out in the crowd?

Pilote has gone some way to answering that question with its Pacific P716P, which sports the aforementioned layout but plants a light firmly under its bushel with a large front lounge. In fact, that’s underselling it – it’s a fantastic achievement.

Design

The Pilote Pacific P716P is based on the Fiat Ducato with a 2.3-litre turbodiesel engine, married to Fiat’s motorhome-specific CCS chassis. Our test ’van was fitted out with the Pastel Brown fabrics scheme and Palissandre cabinetwork and finished in Sensation trim. This includes a cab sunroof, dimmable LED wall lighting, bed base upholstery and wooden trim around the bedroom rooflight.

It also had the 150bhp engine upgrade (£840) plus the GB Enhancement Pack Pacific (£2528 reduced to £758), which adds GRP polyester sidewalls, a passenger airbag, a combination oven and grill, Truma Combi 6 heating and boiler and drop-in lounge carpets. An upgraded cab specification featured a double DIN Pioneer head unit with integrated reversing camera, sitting in a smart black dashboard with silver details around the air vents.

Lounging & dining

We spoke earlier about this motorhome's huge front lounge and it's worth mentioning it in detail, as it really is fantastic. A double sofa on each side of the ’van forms a hollow square with the forward-facing travel seats, allowing six people to sit around the table. And that’s without the cab seats, which can be rotated to face the action, offering eight people the chance to get sociable.

The P716P will therefore be ideal for people who like making friends on tour. To enable potentially large gatherings to move freely around the lounge, the table is hinged in the middle and can lift up easily out of the way.

The lounge even has its own ‘bar’: a drinks cabinet bookends the midships end of the offside double sofa: lift a hinged flap to reveal space for six bottles. On its other side is hanging space for eight stemmed glasses – one for each occupant if the large lounge is fully utilised.

Kitchen

The Continental staple of an L-shaped midships kitchen neatly divides the space between the bedroom and the lounge in this motorhome. The kitchen is split across the ’van, with cooking facilities on the nearside and a fridge with separate freezer compartment on the offside.

Kitchen kit includes the usual essentials: a combi oven and grill, three gas burners in a line, a circular sink and a large overhead locker above a smart black splashback that surrounds the window. Some of the facings under the kitchen worktop are white, referencing the two-tone design of the overhead lockers – a pleasing touch.

Sleeping

To the rear, the P716P follows the offside French bed and nearside corner washroom configuration. The bed measures 1.38m x 2m (4ft 6in x 6ft 6in) and lifts right out of the way to reveal a large storage area that can be accessed from outside via a hatch on the offside rear. The windows have nets in lieu of curtains, plus flyscreens. LEDs set around the centrally mounted rooflight provide ambient lighting, supported by reading lights at both ends of the bed’s headboard.

The lounge’s drop-down double bed sleeps two. It is electrically operated via a remote control on a cord that pulls down from the lounge end of the bed and measures 1.35m x 1.9m (4ft 5in x 6ft 2in).

Washroom

The corner washroom has a shower compartment in the nearside rear corner, which also features a handy drying rail that clips to the ceiling. Further forwards is a swivel cassette toilet, with a smart vanity unit located next to it. Mood lighting around the half-length mirror adds a touch of refinement.

Storage

As well as storage under the fixed bed, the Pilote Pacific P716P has eight overhead lockers to choose from, a wardrobe between the washroom and kitchen, and a large cupboard above the fridge freezer that’s big enough to accommodate a microwave. Other kitchen storage includes a soft-closing cutlery drawer, above a drawer that can store three bottles and a waste bin.

Technical specs

Sleeps4
Travel seats5
MTPLM3500kg
Payload500kg
Length7.18m23′7″
Width2.3m7′7″
Height2.85m9′4″
Engine (power)130
Fresh/waste water130L / 95L
Leisure battery105 Ah

Verdict

Pilote has a loyal following in the UK and a good reputation for quality. This 'van stands out from its rivals thanks to its cracking front lounge, excellent storage and a drop-down bed – all delivered for a keen price. We've given it a four-star rating.

Conclusion

Pros

  • The large lounge is a very sociable space
  • There's plenty of storage

Cons

  • Worktop space is in short supply
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