Peter Baber
Reviews Editor

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Stylish looks and an innovative layout come together in the twin-lounge Swift Rio 340 Black Edition, that's a handy 6.4m long with a 3500kg MTPLM

Overview

Swift’s Rio range was designed to offer all the compactness of a van conversion in a coachbuilt – that meant the ’vans would be marginally narrower (2.26m wide rather than 2.38m).

When the range was first launched, both ’vans came with a large tailgate to let the outside in.

That aspect of the layout no longer features in all the models now in the range, although it does in the sole four-berth: the 6.4-metre 340.

The rear-lounge ’van with its drop-down double bed also features all the improvements to the Rio range as a whole made to Swift motorhomes for the 2017 season.

These include full GRP bodyshells, a quieter Dometic CU600 oven, and electronic fresh- and waste-water-tank drain valves.

Control panels are all-in-one Swift Command units, which can be run by a smartphone app.

But the most obvious improvement is on the outside. Black Edition models with a black Fiat cab and special decals have proved a great sales driver for the Kon-Tiki and Bolero ranges, so this season Swift has introduced them on the Rio.

The ’van runs on a 130bhp Euro 6 engine, with a 3500kg standard Fiat chassis – you get steps on both the habitation door and the tailgate door at the back.

Our test model included the Lux Pack, which adds cab air-conditioning, cruise control and a TV aerial.

This motorhome is priced from £51,780 OTR, £52,775 as tested.

Lounging & dining

Open the habitation door and the first thing you see is the ladder for the drop-down bed resting in its place on the wall.

We’re a little wary of this as a location for such ladders, because we’ve heard stories of people mistaking them for a grab handle.

Inside, the front dinette comes with two fully belted travel seats and a clip-on table that’s plenty big enough for four, with the cab seats swivelled.

The spotlights here are a little special: as well as being directional, they can be dimmed by turning the dial on the back of them.

During the day you shouldn’t need these, though, because the lounge is flooded with brightness from both the rooflight and the sunroof. Even the cab remains a habitable place at night: it has its own spotlights.

Clearly, because of the drop-down bed, the rear lounge doesn’t benefit from much daylight up top.

But you still get three large windows, which is great for when the weather is too miserable to fully throw open the back door. At night you get those same spotlights.

Neither lounge comes with curtains, but you won’t notice that because of the vibrant honeycomb pattern panels that Swift has chosen to use instead.

The bracket for the TV swings out above the small wardrobe that sits between the rear lounge and the central offside washroom.

There are also sockets for a TV above the travel seats in the front. Two speakers are included in the housing for the rooflight above here, while you also get a pair at the back.

Kitchen

The Swift Rio 340’s central kitchen includes an extension flap that doesn’t completely obstruct the door.

Given the large expanse of work surface to the left of the sink, at first sight this flap may seem unnecessary, but it does provide a handy point from which to serve plates to the occupants of the front dinette.

You get a pair of fairly ample cupboards either side of the 110-litre Dometic AES fridge, as well as a cutlery tray and a small pan locker under the oven.

Up above there are three overhead lockers: one to the left, and two to the right of the microwave.

Sleeping

This four-berth has a 6'4"-long make-up double bed, with a 6'1"-long drop-down double overhead.

With both beds at the back of the Swift, there is space in front for early risers to use. The lower double is easily assembled from the settees.

You are, however, left with two transverse beds. That means two of the four of you will need to struggle over a body if you have to get out of bed at night.

Washroom

Some may feel the midships washroom is a little on the small side, but remember that the 340 is a 6.4m-long ’van with two lounges.

Granted, the circular loo takes a nibble out of the shower tray, but this will be an acceptable compromise for users who pitch on full-facility sites.

The showerhead also doubles up as the tap for the washbasin, which is big, but an unusual and perhaps not terribly practical shape.

At least there’s a large, well-lit mirror, with a green splashback between this and the basin.

Storage

With 514kg available, the Swift Rio 340 has a reasonable user payload.

Two medium-sized lockers grace the front lounge, with four more in the rear, where you will also find underseat areas that are easily accessed, with bed slats that stay up.

But the wardrobe is compact, and some of its available space is taken up by the table.

Technical specs

Sleeps4
Travel seats4
MTPLM3500kg
Payload514kg
Length6.4m20′12″
Width2.26m7′5″
Height2.78m9′1″
Engine (power)130
Fresh/waste water86L / 68L
Leisure battery80 Ah
Gas tank size7kg
Number of gas tank compartments2

Verdict

The Swift Rio 340 provides van conversion-like convenience in a coachbuilt motorhome. Four people can stay amicably in here, while cooking facilities are excellent.

Already an appealing option, the Black Edition makes the 340 and its three siblings even more desirable.

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

Conclusion

Pros

  • The rear door brings the outside inside
  • Cooking facilities are first-rate

Cons

  • Both beds are transverse doubles
  • The washroom is rather compact
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