The Randger R535 offers buyers an awful lot for the space it takes up and the price it costs. Particularly noteworthy is the availability of hot water: virtually unheard of in a campervan. The kitchen is great, too.
You could go wild camping in this vehicle with ease, which is partly why it romped home to win the Rising-Roof category in our Motorhome of the Year 2019 awards.
Our only reservation would be clothes storage; although it wouldn’t be the first time this has proved to be a bit of an issue in a campervan. The same goes for storage of bulkier items.
That aside, this is a cleverly designed ‘van that offers a great layout and lots of comfort on tour.
The kitchen in this campervan is brilliantly designed given the small amount of space available
There’s plenty of room for four people to sit and relax in the dinette area
If you’re tempted by this model, check that there’s enough clothes storage space for your needs
Marquis Leisure has built up a very strong track record for bringing new motorhome brands to the UK, which it sells exclusively.
In the past few years, we’ve seen first Benimar and more recently, Mobilvetta – both Trigano subsidiaries, like Marquis – re-established in the UK through Marquis’s 12-strong dealer network.
On the whole, these have been (initially) low-profiles and A-classes. But through sister firm Auto-Sleepers, Marquis is, of course, also known for van conversions.
So when Trigano launched a new venture building campervans, it seemed only natural that Marquis would want a piece of the action. And it did, launching two Randger campervans earlier this year: both four-berths with pop-up roofs.
And in case you were wondering, we should point out that the name is not an example of French people getting their English wrong. We are told ‘Randger’ should be pronounced like a nasal version of ‘Roger’ rather than our English ‘Ranger’.
Of the two models, the R535 – with a side/end kitchen and even a small washroom – won over our Motorhome of the Year Awards judges. We took an R535 to South Lea Caravan Park, near Pocklington, for a spin to see why.
Pullman-style seating is extra sociable and, because you have two sliding doors, you can open up either side of the 'van to enjoy the view
“Ooh – that’s a nice-looking interior,” one of our caravan park’s neighbouring residents said as she took a quick peek inside during our test. She was referring to the leather-look and corduroy soft furnishings.
Okay, so the cream colour isn’t necessarily the most practical, but it looks great and does brighten up the feel of the interior – although those tinted windows don’t particularly affect the ambience inside in a negative way.
The soft-furnishings covers are also included for the cab seats, which is quite unusual in a campervan, and these co-ordinate well with the gloss-white worktops and ‘Mole’ soft-grey furniture.
All of the seats in the dinette/lounge are comfortable – even the single unit by the nearside door.
Pullman-style seating is extra sociable and, because you have two sliding doors, you can open up either side of the ‘van to admire the view – although you do have to negotiate the low bulkhead running along the bottom of the offside opening, which houses the heating ducts.
The table is big enough for at least four dining places. The ‘van also comes supplied with a freestanding table leg, so you could take the table outside; although you would also have to take camping chairs with you.
Because you can stow the table away in its own slotted place in the washroom, you don’t have to spend all of your time inside with your legs cramped under a table. And, come night-time, a powerful striplight keeps the table area illuminated. You don’t get any curtains, but there are effective stick-on blinds that you just need to attach to the tinted windows.
The kitchen is really this campervan’s pièce de résistance. The workspace available – to the right of the sink by the table, and another well-lit raised area at the back of the ‘van – is more than you might get in some much larger ‘vans.
It’s at the right height, too, and the lip of the opening for the rising roof doesn’t get in the way of your vision.
There’s a two-burner gas hob with ignition, and a sink that is fairly standard-sized for a campervan – although the inclusion of hot water makes washing-up so much easier. There’s no oven, but you wouldn’t necessarily expect one in a ‘van of this size.
At the back, below the workspace, you’ll find a 41-litre Webasto Isotherm compressor fridge, which we thought was perfectly adequately sized for a weekend away. That rear worktop area opens out to the back, so if you were parked up by the beach, it could quite easily double up as a serving hatch.
To the right of this, in the nearside rear corner, is a clearly designed control panel, a mains socket turned upside-down to make fitting a plug easier, a 12V socket and a second USB socket – the first is in the cab. You won’t want for digital or electrical connections here.
Underneath the main worktop is what looks like three drawers, although the bottom one turns out to be a locker door covering the fuse box.
You might prefer to use the second of these drawers for storing clothes, but the top drawer is still big enough for most pans. There’s a separate smaller drawer for cutlery. To the right are two large shelves for food storage, covered up by a tambour door and, to the right of that, a couple of shelves above a wine rack. Thanks to another curved tambour door, you can fasten this up when you are travelling or leave it open for display when you’re on site.
It’s rare to see a washroom in a campervan with a rising roof, but the Randger R535 has one. It’s not massive, but that the designers have managed to squeeze one in at all is a clever feat.
You don’t get completely sealed-off privacy in here, but there is enough space for even a tall user.
There are two cupboards underneath and to the side of the sizeable handbasin, which is lit by a spotlight. And there’s a towel hook.
The handbasin tap doubles as an impressive shower, and there is a duckboard fitted at your feet. It might be worth remembering that there are no curtains or blinds on the rear window, so even with the tinted windows, you might want to put up one of the stick-on blinds to ensure complete privacy, particularly for night-time use.
One bonus is that the shower hose is so long that you can actually take the shower right outside and use it to wash down muddy boots if needed.
The roof bed, which you access via a ladder that clips on to the rear of the roof opening, is huge. The mattress that comes with it, however, is a little thin, so it might feel too firm for some people without the addition of a topper.
There is a vent to let in some natural light, but at night, this area could do with a bit more illumination. You can twist up the washroom spotlight to allow in extra light, but this isn’t really sufficient for reading.
The smaller, lower bed is made up via the table and an extra panel that’s stored in the wardrobe. It’s a bit of a faff, although a relatively easy process – if there are just two of you, you might prefer to simply use the roof bed instead.
To make up the lower bed, you also need three large infill cushions – you have to find somewhere to store them when the bed is not in use, which inevitably ends up being the washroom.
Despite these small niggles, we found that the lower bed was plenty comfortable enough once we had put all the relevant cushions into place.
There’s always an issue with storage space in a campervan, because of the very nature of its size, and this it is (to a certain extent) in this Randger R535. The rear of the vehicle is taken up with access to the washroom, battery and gas bottle, and the rising roof means there are no overhead lockers.
If you like to take a fair bit of clothing on tour, it does mean that storing it could be a bit of a challenge. The amount of storage space in the kitchen is rather good, though, so you could get away with using the second drawer in here for garments, as we did during our test.
There is, however, a wardrobe – it’s located between the washroom and the dinette, and it’s of a good height.
The other significant storage space you will find here is under the small seat by the nearside door; it would be useful for stowing walking boots on your return.
If you were to bring an awning, you would probably have to stow it in the aisle en route, and the same would apply to any outdoor furniture, too – but this is something that’s fairly common in small campervans such as this.
|Shipping Length||5.4 m|