Niall HamptonSee other motorhome reviews written by Niall Hampton
Great for touring couples and revised for 2016, find out more about the two-berth, end lounge Swift Escape 622 in the Practical Motorhome review
Originally conceived to make a stand against cut-price foreign imports, Swift Group’s entry level coachbuilt range has become one of the UK’s biggest-selling motorhome line-ups, winning a sackful of awards along the way. Now rolling into its seventh season, Escape clearly thrives on the stiff competition it faces from rivals including Elddis Autoquest, Tribute coachbuilts and most recently Bailey, with the Approach Advance.
Critical to the ongoing popularity – and resilience – of Escape has been a focus on layouts that appeal to both families and newcomers to the pastime, available for a modest outlay and including very respectable equipment lists. Layouts catering from two to six berths are offered, in low-profile (622 and 664) and overcab coachbuilt form (624, 644, 686 and 696).
Following a flurry of improvements to complement the previous year’s base vehicle update, changes for 2016 comprise routine spec bumps. And how better to see how these have been incorporated by taking a look at the 622, a 6.3m-long, end lounge, two-berth – and the newest model to join the range.
Bodyshells have been nudged up to SMART Plus, which adds a new sandwich floor with GRP-coated skin to the timber-free construction method rolled out across Swift Group’s coachbuilt motorhome portfolio in 2015.
On the road
Fiat’s ComfortMatic robotised gearbox is available as a cost option, in conjunction with the Comfort Pack, a £1295 upgrade fitted to our test ’van which adds extras including cab air con, a passenger airbag, an electric entrance step, a windscreen blind, a TV aerial and a Winter Pack (adding a heated waste water tank and insulated water pipes).
Lounging & dining
The interior ambience is pleasing, with little shouting ‘budget’ – three windows and a central rooflight provide natural illumination, with support from LED reading lights in the corners. The seating is comfortable, with good support, although tall people may prefer taller backrests. A folding leaf table fits snugly into the lounge from its storage position in the wardrobe.
Alternatively, the parallel lounge seats can be used as single beds, with the offside bed 2in longer than the nearside one (1.86m x 0.68m; 6ft 1in x 2ft 3in).
|Fresh/waste water||65L / 68L|
|Leisure battery||80 Ah|
|Gas tank size||7kg|
|Number of gas tank compartments||2|
3-burner gas hob, Combined Oven/Grill, Microwave
The Swift Escape 622 will appeal to couples looking for a straightforward and user-friendly motorhome with the comfort and convenience of an end lounge. Well equipped, with plenty of change from £40,000, and now packing some desirable upgrades including DAB radio and an Ecocamel Orbit shower head, the 622 should offer years of happy touring. And to see other Swift motorhomes for sale, click here.
- It represents good value for money
- This definitely doesn't feel like a budget 'van
- With only two travel seats, occasional touring guests can't be accommodated