Wonderland RV is a company that prides itself on crafting beautifully made caravans with a maze of creative and innovative features. They pride themselves on the ability to supply the perfect van for your needs, which explains why there are over 40 layouts available to choose from including the tested Amaroo 1506.
The construction speaks for itself. To eliminate inconsistency problems commonly associated with the traditional “sticks and staples” construction Wonderland RV pioneered their jigsaw wall construction. Combine this with CNC Router cutting and one-piece walls, and you end up with genuine strength and flexibility, along with consistent millimetre precision.
WHERE THE FUN BEGINS
Riding shotgun in the mighty RAM during our AL-KO Tough Tested hot lap was Kevin Dani from Wonderland RV. He’s a bloke who loves his adventure served with just a dash of pizzazz! His Amaroo 1506 was one of the smaller vans we put through the wringer, but it seemed to have more heart than a prizefighter with a bruised ego. While some might say a shorter, lighter weight caravan would bounce around the tracks like a toddler on a sugar high being a single axle, it promised to be a nimble chariot capable of conquering the grittiest of obstacles.
At the drop of the start flag, we were off quicker than a bottle of milk in the Aussie sun. We mounted the first undulations like they were mere speed humps at the supermarket, and high-tailed it down the back straight to the first real test, the Articulation challenge, a random series of wombat holes designed to throw a spanner in the works for any vehicle combination with limited articulation. The mighty RAM’s brawny, long wheelbase soaked it up like an overly enthusiastic sponge with the single axle caravan just chugging along behind like an old-timer on a Sunday arvo drive. We can largely thank the AL-KO coupling for the vans effortless articulation. It allowed the whole unit to pivot independently to the tow vehicle, keeping the wheels firmly on the ground. The approach and departure angles were more than adequate to get the job done, and we even had enough ground clearance to keep that rear step intact!
It was onwards and upwards as we traversed through the water crossing, or the pigs wallow as we call it; then off to hit the high speed section that we raged through with amazing momentum. Let’s just say that when you’re towing a caravan through a set of chicanes on loose dirt at this speed well, it’s a good thing the seats had covers on them!
I like to think I can generally pick a well-behaved caravan from a naughty one fairly quickly and as such, I was more than happy to tackle the high-speed section with immediate pace; the whole van just felt stable. I put it down to a combination of good ball weight, a well-positioned axle and a highly engineered suspension system delivering a well-balanced caravan.
The sand undulations were next, and I was more than happy to be towing the light and inherently nimble Amaroo 1506. Truth be told, there were a few things underneath the caravan I thought might be cutting it fine in terms of clearance on this particular section like that darn rear step but it dodged every attempt of sabotage I threw at it. Everything stayed well out of harm’s way, even with me coming in waaay too hot on one particular crest. Ermmm sorry about that boss…
We sped onto the bone-shattering corrugations and then on to conquer an absolute corker of a hill climb before we crossed the finish line. The little “caravan-that-could” made it through the course with flying colours. The proof is in the pudding; the Amaroo 1506 has undoubtedly got what it takes to take on the big boys when it comes to hitting the tracks!
INSIDE THE AMAROO 1506
The Amaroo is built for those who desire rugged adventures combined with a bucket load of touring capability. It utilizes a torture-proof 4inch double box tube chassis along with a sturdy one-piece floor and roof, as well as the tried and tested Enduro Outback independent trailing arm suspension – AL-KO’s premium full off-road suspension system.
Don’t let all that tough, hard-core terminology fool you; it’s a big softie on the inside. It’s a haven of modern luxury with a spacious and welcoming feel. Microfibre leather upholstery with lift-up footrests set the mood, with an Ibis 3 Air conditioning unit and no shortage of LED’s adding a comfortable touch at the end of a hard day.
The Amaroo is “fully equipped” with twin water tanks, 120AH deep cycle battery, 150 watts of solar power, 28L gas and electric hot water service plus a 40A Voltech battery charger, and a partridge in a pear tree! All of which ensure the Amaroo is ready to rumble at the drop of a hat.
Based on the AL-KO Tough Tested Challenge the Amaroo 1506 gets full marks. Some may say handing me the keys to a RAM and brand new caravan at a 4WD park is like handing a loaded gun to a drunken monkey, but the fact is this little beauty made it to the end without so much as a scratch! This Amaroo is certainly a little caravan with a big heart!
MEET THE AUTHOR
We call him Bear, and no it’s not just because he’s so cute and cuddly. Bear was the sort of kid that had a model fishing boat in the bath and a Jeep in the sandpit dreaming of great adventures both at sea and on land. He has been lucky enough to follow those dreams and now shares his stories of success and failure, what works and what doesn’t, how to and how not to, and of course where to go in our great country. Bears philosophy is about the joy we get from the journey – not just the destination.
Whilst originally trained as a boat builder Bear’s life has led down many paths but always drawing back on those primary skills. He has experience in irrigation, agriculture, engineering, landscaping and even once owned a playground equipment manufacturing company along with many years in wholesale and retail boat sales and fishing charters before turning his hand to outdoor media. Bear is a skilled writer and photographer, hosted successful radio shows, and nowadays spends a good deal of time in front of the camera creating reviews and features for print, on-line, TV and custom media.