HELP - New to motorhomes, advice required purchasing a new motorhome

Mar 9, 2021
9
13
Funster No
79,629
MH
looking to buy
Hi everyone, I have read a number of threads on here and the amount of experience of motor-homing is amazing and who better to ask for help and advice when looking to buy our first motorhome.
We have had caravans for many years and have enjoyed our time very much. Unfortunately in 2019 my husband was diagnosed with a serious illness which resulted in major surgery and since then we have struggled with the caravan, hitching etc. I also don’t like to tow the caravan but feel that I could help with driving the motorhome, I have done this some years ago in Canada.
The problem is when looking for a new motorhome there is so many to choose from, we have narrowed it down to three.
1. PILOTE 626d - 6.2m - spacious lounge, good kitchen - 2 gas rings , wet room with swing door. Over lounge electric drop down bed.
2. PILOTE 696d - 6.99m - same lounge as 626, good kitchen with 3 gas rings, full rear bathroom With separate shower and large wardrobe.
3. BAILEY 69-4 -6.99m similar layout to the PILOTE 696 But with 4 rings and separate grill and oven.
all 3 have decent garage.

I prefer the layout of both the PILOTE 696 and Bailey 69-4 but they are longer motorhomes and have concerns that this may be more difficult to manoeuvre and take into towns, villages, Devon and Cornwall.
Those of you with much larger motorhomes will probably think I am crazy but we need to get this right as we want to enjoy our time out in the motorhome and reduce the stress of driving as much as possible.

Any advice on the manufacturer and experience of build quality as well as length of motorhome would be very much appreciate.
sorry It’s long winded.
thank you
 
Oct 7, 2013
4,471
27,018
South Wales
Funster No
28,463
MH
Elddis Accordo 125
Exp
Since 1988
Hello and welcome to the Forum.

I cannot help with advice regarding the three different marques that you name as I have never owned any of them.

However, I would suggest that you may be worrying too much about the sizes you mention. We are on our 8th motorhome, ranging in size from a sub 6metre Panel Van Conversion to over 8 metres in length.

None proved to be too difficult to manoeuvre in towns/villages. Even with the 6.2m motorhome you are considering you will not fit into a standard car park space so the extra length of the 6.99m ones will not add to any parking problems, over and above this.

We have found that the single most important thing is layout. If that doesn’t suit you, in practical use, you will never be totally happy with your choice.

Someone will reply pretty soon with detailed comments regarding the specific m/hs you mention. In the meantime, best wishes and good luck with your final choice.
 

funflair

LIFE MEMBER
Dec 11, 2013
14,670
18,860
Guisborough
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29,351
MH
MORELO palace
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since 2012
Hi and welcome

For sure you and your husband will find a motorhome less physical and easier than a caravan, as above I wouldn't get too hung up on 6.2m vs 6.99m, you will soon get used to driving it and will appreciate the extra bit of room inside.

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tonka

LIFE MEMBER
Jul 2, 2008
9,047
15,675
Cannock, Staffs
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3,141
MH
A class Burstner 800
Exp
Since 2000
I know little of the Pilot range But a few things that may help calm your fears.

Both pilots are the same width and height so nothing to choose there.
Both have exactly the same wheelbase, distance between front and rear wheels.
The 696 is longer BUT.. Go get a tape measure and look at it.. Nothing just over 2 foot in old money, cant really see that being a problem.. Once you start driving it then i doubt you would ever notice..

As ex-caravanners you do understand the importance of layout so your on the right track,, Good luck with your search,
 
OP
M
Mar 9, 2021
9
13
Funster No
79,629
MH
looking to buy
Tonka you mentioned you knew a little of PILOTE, what are your thoughts about build quality v the Bailey.

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Aug 12, 2020
347
683
Edinburgh
Funster No
74,352
MH
Accordo 120
Exp
Sept 2019
:hi2: w2f Another factor to throw into the equation is the cost and time taken to obtain replacement parts that are specific to the model / maker.
 

Lenny HB

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 18, 2007
29,442
50,946
On the coast in West Sussex
Funster No
658
MH
Hymer B678 Dynamic Line
Exp
Since 2008 & many years tugging
We are ex tuggers I went right off towing but love driving the Motorhome.

I would forget about the Bailey, Polite's are far better built & the Bailey has naff all payload.
Vans under 7m are fairly easy to drive more important than length is width & overhang, overhang is the distance from the rear axle to the back the shorter the easier they are to maneuver in tight spaces. Our van is 7.5m x 2.21 with a short overhang, only been stuck a few times in Spanish villages.

The 626d is going to be cramped for storage pace also short vans often have a choppy ride. If you take bikes with you far easier & safer to store in a garage so the 696d would be a better option. The payload is not that good I assume there will be an option for 3850kg so if you have a C1 licence well worth having.
My personal opinion, I'm not keen on the only bed being a drop down over the lounge, one person can't go to bed & the other stay up & you both have to get up at the same time. Our last two vans have been twin singles over a large garage much more flexible.

Narrower vans to look at, Hymer Exsis range only 2.21m wide & Carthago Compact Line only 2.12m wide.

Have you looked at A Class vans as they are easier to drive, flat sides easy to get through tight spaces & easier to reverse and a lot quieter..

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Last edited:
Feb 3, 2018
3,082
4,573
Mid Cheshire
Funster No
52,244
MH
Elddis 175 Prestige
Exp
Back in the room
Hi everyone, I have read a number of threads on here and the amount of experience of motor-homing is amazing and who better to ask for help and advice when looking to buy our first motorhome.
We have had caravans for many years and have enjoyed our time very much. Unfortunately in 2019 my husband was diagnosed with a serious illness which resulted in major surgery and since then we have struggled with the caravan, hitching etc. I also don’t like to tow the caravan but feel that I could help with driving the motorhome, I have done this some years ago in Canada.
The problem is when looking for a new motorhome there is so many to choose from, we have narrowed it down to three.
1. PILOTE 626d - 6.2m - spacious lounge, good kitchen - 2 gas rings , wet room with swing door. Over lounge electric drop down bed.
2. PILOTE 696d - 6.99m - same lounge as 626, good kitchen with 3 gas rings, full rear bathroom With separate shower and large wardrobe.
3. BAILEY 69-4 -6.99m similar layout to the PILOTE 696 But with 4 rings and separate grill and oven.
all 3 have decent garage.

I prefer the layout of both the PILOTE 696 and Bailey 69-4 but they are longer motorhomes and have concerns that this may be more difficult to manoeuvre and take into towns, villages, Devon and Cornwall.
Those of you with much larger motorhomes will probably think I am crazy but we need to get this right as we want to enjoy our time out in the motorhome and reduce the stress of driving as much as possible.

Any advice on the manufacturer and experience of build quality as well as length of motorhome would be very much appreciate.
sorry It’s long winded.
thank you
Have you thought about hiring one?
On the face of it, seems like a waste of money, but could end up being the best £1000 you ever waste, against buying the wrong one
 
Feb 22, 2011
5,294
7,433
Newcastle under Lyme
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15,397
MH
Hymer B544 A Class
Exp
Since 2015
w2f
I think reading the motorhome buyers guide in the resources section will give you a lot of useful information but you may need to pay the £15 to become a full member.
 
Oct 26, 2014
785
922
Dumfries and Galloway
Funster No
33,996
MH
Pilote P650GJ Euro6
Exp
since 2014
Tonka you mentioned you knew a little of PILOTE, what are your thoughts about build quality v the Bailey.
Hi the first Motorhome we owned was a Bailey Approach Autograph which we traded after 18 months of ownership for a new Pilote
As far as build quality and reliability the Pilote has been virtually problem free in two years we have owned it with only a few very minor niggles .
The Bailey wasn’t so good
 

suavecarve

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 18, 2009
4,036
20,258
Surrey/Hants
Funster No
8,035
MH
Rollerteam 690
Exp
July 09
Mollymops113 Welcome to the forum.

You may have noticed Lenny HB post.
His thoughts are well worth a read, and I would second the "Pay your subs". That £15 may provide better value for money than the grand for renting one (which isnt such a bad idea)

One of the other many considerations you will have to take in will be gas, if hubby is struggling with hitching up, he may struggle with changing over full gas cylinders. LPG is a very good option for habitation gas if that is the case, and although a garage is lovely you would need to check the steps out as appropriate if there is an issue climbing them as some are "interesting"
 
Jun 27, 2012
26
10
leyland lancs
Funster No
21,682
MH
on order
Exp
im a newbie
We have a new Pilote 696 and love it huge lounge, seats at least 7 good sized adults (if we ever get back to normal!) drop down double bed. I have MS and find the wide door and low step a massive help.

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May 30, 2019
87
104
Funster No
61,293
MH
Adria Twin Supreme
Exp
Since 2018
Have you thought about hiring one?
I’d agree if you are in any doubt re size and layout.

We ran a 7.4m Benimar for 2 years but found the layout was not as easy to live with as we initially thought. Also we were not using all the space in the van.

Thought about downsizing to a PVC 6.4m so hired one for a long weekend. This confirmed we were happy with layout, space and drive so we ordered a new Adria Twin.

Only disappointment is it’s been sitting on the dealers lot since the start of the year and we can’t travel to pick it up.

Happy days ahead though!
 

icantremember

LIFE MEMBER
Sep 2, 2010
7,639
14,690
Near to Watton in Norfolk
Funster No
13,512
MH
Hymer T-SL668
Exp
since 2005
Hi and w2f

I don't know if it has been mentioned or if you are aware of driving licence restrictions. You may already have a C1 qualification on your licence and this would be required for any motorhome in excess of 3500Kg MGW. If you are looking at hoho's less than 3500Kg then you should be ok.

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OP
M
Mar 9, 2021
9
13
Funster No
79,629
MH
looking to buy
Thank you to everyone for all your advice. It is difficult due to lockdown we are unable to view any until mid April and from what I can gather more people are purchasing motorhomes and caravans, stock is limited as are forward orders. After looking at reviews of both PILOTE and BAILEY on the the internet it does look favourable for the PILOTE.
The new Bailey Adamo 69-4 does look lovely and on a Ford cab, no cab blinds just a curtain in front of the cab seats.
Cant wait to be able to view in mid April and hopefully get back on the road. HAPPY TRAVELLING
 

tonka

LIFE MEMBER
Jul 2, 2008
9,047
15,675
Cannock, Staffs
Funster No
3,141
MH
A class Burstner 800
Exp
Since 2000
Tonka you mentioned you knew a little of PILOTE, what are your thoughts about build quality v the Bailey.
Sorry I said "I know little" in fact naff all. 😁🤣
Just my own personal choice but Pilote over bailey. Going to get lynched now :rofl: :rofl:

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OP
M
Mar 9, 2021
9
13
Funster No
79,629
MH
looking to buy
We have a new Pilote 696 and love it huge lounge, seats at least 7 good sized adults (if we ever get back to normal!) drop down double bed. I have MS and find the wide door and low step a massive help.
May I ask Cason a question, as you already have a PILOTE 696 can you advise if it’s possible to leave the quilt on the bed during the day when it’s stored over the lounge. I’ve read that some motorhomes with electric drop down beds dont fully connect if the quilt is left on. Thank you
 
Feb 3, 2018
3,082
4,573
Mid Cheshire
Funster No
52,244
MH
Elddis 175 Prestige
Exp
Back in the room
May I ask Cason a question, as you already have a PILOTE 696 can you advise if it’s possible to leave the quilt on the bed during the day when it’s stored over the lounge. I’ve read that some motorhomes with electric drop down beds dont fully connect if the quilt is left on. Thank you
How tall is your tallest?
 
Jan 20, 2019
281
580
Bristol
Funster No
58,131
MH
Pilote 716P
Exp
Newbie
We have a Pilote 716 and have been really happy with it. We looked at a fair few before we purchased in 2018 and it seemed the best quality for the budget.
We also have an electric drop down bed over dining table and it’s very comfortable! You can keep all bedding on when stored no problem.
Whilst we don’t mind taking it out for the day we tend to stay max 3-4 nights and then move to another site.
Welcome👍😀

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Jan 11, 2020
710
1,103
South Devon, UK
Funster No
67,952
MH
Rapido C class
Exp
Yottie convert
Lenny HB ’s advice re the drop-down bed is very valid, as is the advice to hire what is close to your possible ideal layout. A fixed bed means you can have a nap when you want, without cutting off the living area for everyone else. Good luck in your search.
 
Apr 26, 2015
714
673
Ottershaw
Funster No
36,067
MH
Don't own one yet
Exp
I'm a newbie
The new Bailey Adamo 69-4 does look lovely and on a Ford cab,

If you do end up with a motorhome on a Ford base make sure that you have extra security fitted as they are very easy to steal, some insurance companies on their online quote forms ask if the motorhome is based on a Ford, just something to consider when making your purchase.
 
Jun 16, 2017
136
243
Bridlington
Funster No
49,041
MH
Pilote P650GJ
Exp
Newbie
We have a Pilote P650GJ with low twin singles bought in August 2020, privately sold our Bessacarr 424 with electric drop down bed, comfortable bed but as mentioned you have to both go to bed or get up together, no issues on reliability but the Pilote wins on quality and overall comfort.

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Mar 11, 2019
245
260
Funster No
59,032
MH
Adria Twin 640 2019
Exp
2017
Ordered a Bürstner as our 3rd van. Stepping up from VW T6, giant Adria twin. My confidence has grown to go bigger. I’ll be taking a test for C2 license and can’t wait ! The inky pitfall going bigger I’ll not get in standard parking space... time for a bike but room to store them !
 
Jun 16, 2013
1,142
731
Wiltshire
Funster No
26,522
MH
Low Profile Hymer CL 554
Exp
Since May 2014
Our first van had a electric drop down bed on a 6m van (Chausson) . It was a lovely van but we got fed up of both of us having to get up at the same time. Also the bed used to mess around a lot. Might have improved in newer ones, ours kept losing the settings. We now have a 7 m van with a fixed bed. It’s great what a difference, and no problem driving it.
 
Jul 10, 2017
101
286
Ireland
Funster No
49,405
MH
Coach built
Exp
Newbie
Ive owned a Bailey since 2013 and love it. , its wide and that makes for a fantastic sense of space inside . It’s had its moments construction / build / niggle wise but nothing to remotely outweigh the pleasure it has given us.
Best of luck with your search.

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