Peter Baber
Reviews Editor

See other motorhome reviews written by Peter Baber

Squeezing six berths and a UK-friendly twin-lounge layout into a 7.34m-long, 3500kg MTPLM ’van is no mean feat – check out the 2017 Elddis Autoquest 196

Overview

When Elddis introduced its 2017 model year motorhomes last summer, most of the attention focused on the new low-level chassis the County Durham-based manufacturer’s Autoquest range is now built on.

There was less attention on new layouts. But there was one new addition – the 196.

Its floor plan should already be familiar to fans of Elddis motorhomes, as it is almost identical to the already established 195, with a lounge front and back, and a washroom and kitchen in between. The only difference is a dropdown bed over the front lounge.

But that is quite a difference, because it introduces a six-berth into a range that has been the staple of many a dealer special edition up and down the country – taking it into territory where it could offer an Anglo-Saxon alternative to the Continental models that have been dominating the large family market in recent years.

On the road

That lowered chassis, combined with Euro 6 2.0-litre 130bhp Peugeot Boxer engines, should improve the ’vans’ road-handling attributes and provide a more comfortable ride for everyone inside.

That’s good for those in the front, as the cab seats are captain’s seats. But it’s good for those behind too, because this is a proper family ’van, so the front dinette comes with four fully belted travel seats to match the number of berths. There are two facing forward and two facing back.

Lounging & dining

The two parallel settees in the rear lounge together could seat all six of you, and are separated by a lift-up flap to rest your drinks and snacks, if you don’t want to use the foldaway table.

The front lounge, with a side settee as well as the four travel seats, is a perfectly respectable alternative location where your children could while away a rainy Sunday afternoon while you read the papers up rear. Both lounges have spotlights, but nothing directional.

Kitchen

In the central kitchen, in between the black sink and three-burner hob, is a fair amount of workspace that can also be extended by another flap that opens out beyond the hob. This doesn’t get in the way of the habitation door. However, as the two mains sockets are this side of the hob, you might be tempted to place a kettle here, so there still might be some hazard to those coming in.

The family chef won’t be disappointed with kitchen storage in the Elddis Autoquest 196. You get four drawers down the middle between the 85-litre fridge and the oven and grill. There's another pan locker under the oven, as well as a row of four overhead cupboards.

Sleeping

The two settees in the rear pull together to make a double bed that is regularly shaped and comfy. The front lower double is rather more elaborate to assemble.

Moving on to berths five and six in the drop-down double bed, partly to avoid any obstruction of the habitation door, that bed is only 1.2m wide. As it also comes with a copious safety net and a not particularly comfortable metal ladder, perhaps it’s only for two children who don’t mind sleeping close.

It’s also worth noting that the only privacy partition there is in the whole of this family ’van cuts both the wardrobe and the washroom off from the rear bed, which you as adults are possibly most likely to use. If those sleeping at the back like their privacy, that could be an issue.

Washroom

The 196's washroom seems initially to be all white plastic, an impression not helped by the lack of a window. However, you do get a salad bowl style washbasin, a separate shower for the sizeable tray in front of the basin, and the hint of a different colour in the good-sized wooden cupboard.

Storage

The half-height wardrobe to the right of the washroom has five soft-close doors beneath it, so you won’t be wanting for clothes storage. And there is a good selection of overhead lockers throughout, including one over the cab.

Equipment

This motorhome is pleasantly warmed throughout with 4kW Whale heating, although both the 100-litre fresh water tank and 70-litre waste water tank are underslung and open to the elements.

At this price bracket you aren’t going to get full winterisation, although a winter pack (fresh- and waste-water tank heaters plus fridge vent covers) is available for £305.

The Elddis Autoquest 196 is priced from £42,349 OTR. The Lux Pack comprises popular upgrade options including a passenger air bag, cab air con and cruise control, for £1218.

Further customisation options include a microwave oven (£180), cab blinds (£405), a tow bar (£475) and a rear view camera system (£320).

Technical specs

Sleeps6
Travel seats6
MTPLM3500kg
Payload568kg
Length7.34m24′1″
Width2.69m8′10″
Height2.82m9′3″
Engine (power)130
Fresh/waste water100L / 70L
Leisure battery100 Ah
Gas tank size7kg
Number of gas tank compartments2
Kitchen Equipment
3-burner gas hob, Oven, Separate grill

Verdict

If you’re after six berths in what is otherwise one of Britain’s favourite motorhome layouts – the rear lounge – then the Elddis Autoquest 196 is a good bet.

But you might find the drop-down bed itself on the narrow side, and probably best left for the kids.

And to see other Elddis motorhomes for sale, click here.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Front and rear lounges in a six-berth family ’van
  • There is a good amount of storage
  • You get a generous sense of space in this motorhome

Cons

  • There's a lack of privacy for those using the rear bed
  • The drop-down double is possibly only suitable for children
  • The all-in-one washroom isn't massive and doesn't have a window
Share with friends

Follow us on

Recently added motorhomes for sale

Most recent motorhome reviews

The Practical Motorhome Marquis Majestic 196 review – 1 - Fitting six berths and six travel seats into a 3500kg motorhome is no mean feat – does it work? (© Phil Russell/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Swift Bessacarr 597 review – 1 - The ’van tested has an MTPLM of 3850kg, but there is a version with a 3500kg MTPLM (and a lower payload) – read more in our Swift Bessacarr 597 review (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)

Rapido 8094dF

£70,600OTR

The Practical Motorhome Rapido 8094dF review – 1 - You get a lot in this 3500kg MTPLM motorhome, but 3700kg and 4.4-tonne chassis upgrades are available (© Sarah Wakely/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome 2018 Auto-Trail Tracker LB Lo-Line review – 1 - The Auto-Trail Tracker LB is available in Lo-Line (as pictured) or Hi-Line form (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome 2018 Elddis Accordo 105 review – 1 - The Elddis Accordo 105's Azure Blue aluminium sidewalls are new for the 2018 touring season (© Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Chausson Flash 716 review – 1 - Priced from £49,500, this new five-berth low-profile from Chausson has a licence-friendly MTPLM of 3500kg (© Practical Motorhome)