Swift’s Escape has always been a well-equipped, value-for-money offering. Add to this the fact that the pandemic has made it very difficult for any motorhome manufacturer to develop new models, and you can see the logic behind this 2021 revamp.
Our test vehicle, viewed at Spinney Motorhomes, had the optional 140bhp engine and auto ‘box fitted, adding to the spec – and, of course, the cost.
The 694 is the top of the Escape tree, featuring a rear island bed – a must for many customers these days.
With smart new graphics, this ‘van looks striking, on the road and on site. Black alloy wheels are now fitted as standard, and our model had a Thule side awning – another cost option.
The Escape has a rear garage with easy access, and all service points are on the offside. GRP sides and roof give it a tough shell. There are mounting points on the rear panel for a bike rack.
There’s no TV aerial fitted – that’s classed as an extra – but an opening sunroof is included.
Overall, the Escape 694 looks good. The interior is bright and breezy, with a contemporary styling that echoes the very successful Sprite caravan range.
The layout provides a front lounge, with a midships L-shaped kitchen and a central offside washroom.
The Fiat cab comes with air-con, cruise control, pleated window blinds and cup holders. The front seats swivel to provide additional lounge seating.
There’s a bench seat by the entrance door and opposite, L-shaped seating and a height-adjustable table, which forms the base of the front double bed.
The side dinette has plenty of roof locker storage, with a small lipped shelf over the cab. There’s more storage beneath the seat bases. The lounge is comfortable, with Swift’s signature upholstery, complemented with some smart scatter cushions.
Two large windows allow ventilation and plenty of light, even on a rather dull December day. Good lighting is provided by integral spotlights under the lockers and two more adjustable lights on the edge of the cab pillars, one next tot a mains socket.
The two forward-facing seats are belted, so there are four travel seats, and outlets for the blown-air heating are placed here, too. The control panel is just above the entrance door.
The 694’s kitchen comes with a microwave, which is set at a sensible height. There is also a Thetford oven with spark ignition and a three-burner hob, and you get the Dometic Series 10 133-litre slimline dual-hinge fridge/freezer, with the two-way door.
The large stainless-steel sink is fitted on the end of the L-shaped worktop, so you need to take care when washing up, to avoid any undue splashing!
There is storage beneath the oven and the sink, while an overhead locker can accommodate lots of crockery.
Good downlighting and a worktop extension fitted by the door mean that the kitchen is practical as well as good looking, although there is just the one mains socket fitted here.
The washroom is placed opposite the kitchen, and although it’s a combined shower and toilet and is quite compact, it’s functional, with a reasonably sized handbasin and more storage below. There’s also another overhead locker here, but no window – a roof vent allows in light and ventilation.
The comfortable island bed is a key feature of the 694 – it has a supportive mattress and storage space in the base. The bed pushes back for daytime use.
There’s a wardrobe either side, and two more overhead lockers. There are two bedside shelves, but no drawers.
Two USBs are fitted on the offside, while opposite, there are shelves, with a large mirror and a mains socket. The bedroom is a generous size, so is sure to find favour with many couples.
PRACTICAL MOTORHOME SAYS…
The Escape provides an excellent combination of great value and quality build. The interior is pleasing and has a good finish. The new décor feels very fresh. There’s a good choice of extras, such as the alloy wheels, and it certainly looks smart – the bolder graphics add to this.
Although the washroom is quite compact, it is practical and the kitchen is well equipped. It’s no surprise to hear that the 694 is selling well, according to dealers.
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The comfortable island bed is a key feature of the 694 - it has a supportive mattress and storage space in the base
|Shipping Length||7.41 m|
|Engine Size||2300 cc|