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AL-KO Best Aussie Vans 2018 – $80K-$100K Category

THEORY OF EVOLUTION

The Coromal Pioneer XC 632S (PEX) may be an evolution of a historic household name but it comes from a new breed. The body is frameless, it sits on a lightweight chassis and is full of good ideas such as the massive, scratch resistant automotive glass windows and a one-piece honeycomb floor.

To elaborate, this caravan simply screams innovation –  from the chassis and suspension to the weight-saving honeycomb that’s used in much of the cabinetry, and the tinted automotive glass windows, which Coromal claims are superior to Perspex.

The Pioneer Evolution is a big step away from its previous designs. For a start, the Modular Assembled Evolution chassis owes much to clever use of dimple stamped C-section steel. No welding is used in the construction, there are no RHS steel members to be seen, and it is all riveted and bolted together.  

Inside, CNC-cut overhead lockers and cupboards use an aluminium framing system and are an integral part of the overall structure. New light-weight doors are incorporated into the cupboard design.

There are new wood-free materials everywhere in the fabrication, with honeycomb polypropylene flooring, carbon-fibre panels and rails, frameless FRP cladding, plus light-weight bench tops, partitions and doors, as well as an array of appliances, power and electrics to keep you moving well away from the rat race.

The sheer amount of thought, R&D and consideration that has gone into every square inch of this van is impressive.

“Indisputably, the Pioneer Evolution XC 632S lives up to Coromal’s ‘bringing sexy back’ mantra. Even Justin Timberlake would be impressed!”

– Peter Quilty (BAV Judge)

“This van would be a fine choice for a couple to undertake that dream trip of a lifetime, maybe the big lap or extended adventures into the mulga – all for a touch under that magical $100K.”

– John Willis (BAV Judge)

“Many caravan manufacturers are using acrylic double-glazed windows which can be scratched quite easily. The glass windows are heavier but do look remarkably stylish.”

– Malcolm Street (BAV Judge)

“It’s not the most expensive van, nor the biggest or flashiest, but having seen many, many older Coromals in the factory and out on the road, this ultra-modern, new-look offering blew me away.”

– Laura Gray (BAV Judge)

LEGENDARY STUFF!

The Legend Caravans team brought along more than just a considered, gorgeous and impeccably styled van. This one has a new heart, or should that be a skeleton. A few years ago, we saw a Legend at Best Aussie Vans with a poplar frame, that the company claimed had water-resistant and bug-proof qualities. No doubt that was true, but the team has now moved quickly past that, into aluminium frames – clearly a superior choice for both those reasons.

In fact, all the company’s vans built late in 2018 and beyond will have frames that are robotically riveted alloy box section, giving greater accuracy and strength, and guaranteed rot-free. 

The Kick Back reveals painstaking attention to detail…typical of the Legend breed. For starters, it boasts a 3mm-thick aluminium composite sheathing and a 1.3mm-thick machine-riveted aluminium frame (walls/roof). 

A look under the chassis reveals a very good ground clearance – a serious consideration for any offroad van. Gal sheet protection is used on all the water tanks and scrub rails are fitted on both sides of the van.

It’s also a self-sufficient ‘beast’ equipped with 240Ah of battery capacity, 190L of freshwater, 110L of grey water, and 320W of solar power.

The plush internal layout showcases design nous – from the galley to the capacious internal storage.

And from its gloss cabinetry to the faux-marble benchtops, superb linings, mood lighting, branded mirror highlights and thickly upholstered trim and leather lounge, the internal living space is a treat. But the angled kitchen bench is the star of the show, pleasing to the eye and allowing so much extra space.

“There’s no doubt you’ll have one of the flashiest vans on the road, or the van park if you’re kicking back in this van.”

– Laura Gray (BAV Judge)

“While some offroad vans tend to be more practical than good looking, the Legend has plenty of ‘bling’ about it.”

– Malcolm Street (BAV Judge)

“The Kick Back layout was designed for a cruising couple with a taste for some rugged adventure away from the blacktop, but who also enjoy deluxe comfort inside.”

– John Willis (BAV Judge)

“It’s an all-purpose offroader with a ‘Home Beautiful’ disposition… And it goes without saying that bona fide offroaders of this ilk under $90K are scarce as hen’s teeth”

– Peter Quilty (BAV Judge)

MEET THE AUTHORTim Van Duyl

Tim van Duyl

Coming from marine publishing Tim now oversees Caravan World and Trade-a-Boat for the Adventures Group as their Senior Editor. With experience garnered from travelling the breadth and width of his home country New Zealand in all manner of ways, his mission is to see all Australia has to offer. Having already sampled Cape York, Murray-Sunset National Park, Wilsons Promontory and the bulk of Victoria’s West, he has plans to add to the small parts of WA and NT already seen. When not on the road you can find Tim passing time at lakes around Australia or in the high country camping with his close friends and family with the Murrindindi a popular spot.

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