Looking to buy...

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Jun 13, 2019
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Hi
We are looking to buy a Benimar Tessoro 494.
Any feedback would be appreciated.
Ali and Jill
 

Blue Knight

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Hi Ali and Jill and welcome to Fun.

The Benimar is a 4-berth van on paper but in reality the payload is incredibly poor and will struggle to support two people for a weekend away.

The problem with vans like this is that the manufacturers build them so heavy and so close to the 3.5Tonne limit that they become unfit for the purpose of motorhoming.

If you have a C1 license then you'll be able to register it at 3,650kg or 3,850kg with the relevant paperwork etc but please don't assume that your available payload will shoot up because it's likely that your rear axle will max-out way before you get anywhere near your new upper registered weight, I.e. because of the large rear overhang on the van and what effect such weights have on the rear axle.

They look nice but not fit for purpose IMO unless you register at a higher weight and travel very lightly, often without any water.

All the best,

Andrew
 
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A
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Hi Andrew,
Thanks so much. That’s really useful for us. It is only two of us but we will look into this more closely now and explore the higher registration possibility.
A & J
 

Blue Knight

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Hi Andrew,
Thanks so much. That’s really useful for us. It is only two of us but we will look into this more closely now and explore the higher registration possibility.
A & J
Hi Guys,

I'm not trying to part you from your hard earned cash but if you join Fun as full members then you'll have access to the motorhome buyers guide and other resources which will become invaluable for new van hunters like yourselves.

If the Benimar has a Ford cab as a base vehicle then make sure that you buy the van with a tracker fitted as some insurers are a bit more sensitive to the Ford cab because of previous theft statistics etc. I wouldn't worry about the Ford-thing as it's a great engine but it's also nice to have a more palatable insurance quote too.

If you are buying a new van then you'll have to deal with Marquis as your sales POC. Some Marquis dealers provide reasonable-to-good service but others are utterly shocking so do your research and choose your dealer wisely.

A new van will always come with a few issues so having a reliable dealer who is close to your main home is always useful. My dealer is a 300-mile round trip away so for me it can be a pain in the arse if something goes wrong.

If you need a van for international touring whereby you'll add full water tanks, extra habitation batteries and extra solar, satellite domes, bikes and scooters etc, or a variety of extra bits then the Benimar is probably not the van for you as it will exceed the max 3,850kg before you know it.

If you want the likes of a scooter on a towbar then you'll have to pull a mini trailer as the Benimar with its large overhangs and restricted axle tolerance will not cope.

......so make sure you first establish what you want to do with your potential purchase, and where you want to travel, and with what kit, before making a decision on this or any other MoHo.

The buyers guide will help guys.

Best of luck,

Andrew
 

AndyPK

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Motorhoming for 2 years so far........
Hello, Ali & Jill, and welcome!

WRT your ‘van, have you owned/rented one before, as the most important factor we found was the layout we required......we’ve only been motorhoming since 2015 and have just got our third ‘van.....the first was an AS Clubman (too small), the second a Majestic 120 (ok, but making the bed up a faff!), and our third, now two weeks old, is a Majestic 155 with a fixed-bed. We have four dogs who travel with us, but never take any other humans....!
Also, think about storage for the ‘van.....will a 7.5m van fit on your drive? And DO make sure your dealer isn’t too far away!
There are a million-and-one other things to consider too......but that’s what the forums are for!

Happy camping!!!

(y)
 
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Thanks Andy,
We have been looking for a few months at different lay outs and can absolutely see why you make the suggestion. It’s a little bewildering! We have identified a few “must-haves” and that is helping.
We have also rented to try the whole concept out and are convinced that it is for us, so we are looking forward to plenty of adventures soon!
Thanks again
A
 

thebriars

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We have a Beni 484 and it is brilliant! The Ford is great to drive and very well worth the extra for the auto, its a proper torque converter and a dream. There are loads of included extras including a tracker. For lots of reasons the Ford is the better of the two chassis on offer and comes with a 5 year warranty.

Marquis Durham did an excellent handover and beat any other dealer we've had experience of hands down.

The 494 does have a very low payload weight. They are very solidly built which is why they are heavy, but after rejecting our Elddis caravan because it simply fell apart as soon as we used it we really wanted something much stronger. Why not look at a smaller Benimar and use the drop-down bed. This has proved excellent for us. The OH could not climb a ladder, but the bed in ours drops right down to seat level, thus you get the best of both worlds, a very comfortable fixed bed and a large lounge without either the length or the weight penalty, yet it will still sleep 4 if needed. I weighed ours when we got it and it was exactly the weight stated in the literature, and fully loaded just comes up to the 3.5 tonnes. There is loads of storage in ours, we take a couple of electric bikes in the garage along with chairs and recliners. OH really likes the large kitchen area.

If you go onto Facebook there is a very active Benimar closed group which you can join. There you will be able to find out all about these vans.
 

Cheshirecat57

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Thanks Andy,
We have been looking for a few months at different lay outs and can absolutely see why you make the suggestion. It’s a little bewildering! We have identified a few “must-haves” and that is helping.
We have also rented to try the whole concept out and are convinced that it is for us, so we are looking forward to plenty of adventures soon!
Thanks again
A
I have posted a similar answer previously so apologies to others who have read
I can guarantee that your “must have” list will have loads on it that turn out (post fourth trip) to not be important and some REAL “must haves” that raise their head are not even on todays list 🙂

Trying to be helpful not negative

Im on my third new van in 15 months
 

Hollyberry

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w2f and good luck with your van search. Can 100% recommend Jim’s buying guide, could save you a lot of problems and £££s.
 
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