Aussie Caravans/Campervans

Submitted: Friday, Oct 06, 2017 at 21:47
ThreadID: 135712 Views:1896 Replies:15 FollowUps:5
Are there any genuine Aussie makers anymore?

I was nearly interested with the Parkes 13 until I found out, Made in China, assembled in Australia

Liestyle not an option, those who make good vans want exorbinant monies out of my price range.

I like the Gecko 11' but don't know where it is made
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Reply By: IvanTheTerrible - Friday, Oct 06, 2017 at 22:55

Friday, Oct 06, 2017 at 22:55
A country Victorian engineering company has just purchased Trakmaster caravans so assume they are Australian made.
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Reply By: Member - DW Lennox Head(NSW) - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 04:25

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 04:25
Kimberley Kampers,who make the Kamper, Karavan and Kruiser, are Australian owned and made in Ballina NSW.
Avida make caravans in Penrith.
Sunland are made near Caboolture also Bushtracker somewhere near there.
There are a lot.
Duncan
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:28

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:28
All on the Lemon Caravans in Australia "Buyer Beware List"
I don't think so, except Bushtracker
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Follow Up By: Member - Paul B (WA) - Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:40

Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:40
Having recently gone through the same process and looked in detail at the Lemon Caravans Facebook page, I couldn't get over what constituted a lemon caravan.

It seemed to me that under their definition, a caravan was a lemon merely if someone said it was.

There seemed to be all manner of grievances, real or imagined, that bore little relationship with the actual quality of the build, that rendered some very fine Australian products "lemons".

Kimberley, Avida and Sunland are generally very well regarded by the owners of their products as are Cub campers, but they were all on the list. By this definition, Mercedes Benz and Rolls Royce would also be on the list, if they were caravans.

I think you might need a better reference source.
Paul B Kalgoorlie

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Reply By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 07:52

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 07:52
Ultimate Campers at Moruya NSW south coast.
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Reply By: Shaker - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 08:10

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 08:10
Vista RV & Track Trailer both in Bayswater, VIC.
Australian Off Road Campers on Caloundra, Qld.
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Reply By: uncle arthur - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 08:49

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 08:49
Penguin Composites in Penguin Tasmania manufacture a variety of different style vans and campers all in fibreglass.
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Reply By: Kenell - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 12:53

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 12:53
I spent the better part of 5 years and countless dollars on exhibitions / shows etc chasing the elusive quality product at affordable price. I needed to upgrade my canvas (Ozzie built) camper to something more substantial. 2 years ago I settled on the Lifestyle Reconn which I gather you have discounted. Most of the ones that others have mentioned in their responses to you are in the same bracket or dearer but they are also very good products. The imports are putting a lot of price pressure on the Oz manufacturers - particularly when it comes to the secondhand market.

Not everything from China is poor quality but a lot of research is required particularly in the after sales area. I go quite remote and was therefore prepared to pay the extra for the peace of mind. I have been very happy with the trailer and the after sales service but I do acknowledge I paid a premium for it.

Good luck with your research.

Ken
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Reply By: Baz - The Landy - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 14:55

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 14:55
You may find this of interest, it relates to Camper Trailers manufactured in Australia. Perhaps there is also a Caravan equivalent organisation.

I’m in no way endorsing, promoting, or associated with the Australian Made Camper Trailer Guild, but it is worth highlighting this from its website as it goes some way to answering your question, especially with regard to Australian Manufacture.

Australian Manufactured Camper Trailers Guild website...

“What is AMCTG?

These letters stand for quality and reassurance to Australian camping consumers that our members are genuine Australian Manufacturers. The Australian Manufactured Camper Trailer Guild (AMCTG) has been established in 2011 and includes only Australian industry leaders of Camper Trailer Manufacturing.

All members are subjected to engineering compliance for Australian Standards and also confirm that their complete manufacturing process is conducted in Australia with the very best of materials – including CHASSIS, BODY, SUSPENSION, TENT and CANVAS. Guaranteed!”

Mind you, as a “rule of thumb” – Australian Made usually means more expensive, especially given manufacturing costs in Australia are generally higher than China, for example.

Hope this helps…

Cheers, Baz – The Landy
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:34

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:34
Yes, I've heard of them several years ago.

I'll give them a look, thank you
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Reply By: Will 76 Series - Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:08

Saturday, Oct 07, 2017 at 22:08
Australian Offroad Campers in Coloundra Qld (AOR).
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Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:20

Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:20
Our New Age caravan was Aussie Built. Here's where a lot of the bits came from:
Chassis was from Preston chassis in Melbourne.
Cabinets and general build was in their factory in Melbourne.
Suspension and Hitch came from Vehicle Components in Brisbane.
Brakes/hubs/stabilisers/ jockey wheel and ESC are all from Alko in Melbourne
Electrics are Narva and Clipsal.
Electric fitout was by Caravan Electrical Solutions in Melbourne.
Plumbing was from Northern RV in Melbourne
Pull out Marine BBQ came from Caravan and Marine BBQs at Taylors Beach NSW
All the windows and appliances are brand name and not cheap Chinese knockoffs.

That's a lot of great Aussie companies, Aussie labour and suppliers and the quality is there.

And all the dodgy additions came from Phil's shed in Adelaide!!
2012 Landcruiser 200 Altitude
2015 New Age MR16E Deluxe
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:24

Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 09:24
The Gecko 11 you looking at is a New Age caravan too.
https://www.newagecaravans.com.au/caravan_brand/gecko/

Used to be able to do factory tours at their factory in Melbourne.
Also they sent me photos of my van while it was being built.
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Reply By: Member - Gary R M (VIC) - Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 10:01

Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 10:01
Also Mountain Trail Campers in Albury. Expensive but in my opinion worth the cost.
Cheers, Gary M.
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Reply By: Member - RUK42 (QLD) - Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 17:40

Sunday, Oct 08, 2017 at 17:40
Not endorsing the product but

North Coast Campers at Caloundra
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Reply By: Motherhen - Monday, Oct 09, 2017 at 01:16

Monday, Oct 09, 2017 at 01:16
There are many Australian manufacturers, probably well over 100; most are still manufactured in Australia.

The average buyer is wanted 'good value' and see something glitzy and thinks it looks good. This encourages the market to create a cheaper caravan. If the price for a nice looking caravan is around $40,000 new, it will be Chinese manufactured or part thereof. Unfortunately this price pressure often means that good brands with good quality can't compete, and these are the ones lost to the market :(.

If you want to buy Australian Made, do a factory tour. If they don't allow tours, walk away. This advice was important long before Chinese caravans too. Check how it is made, not just how good the finished product looks.
Motherhen

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Follow Up By: CSeaJay - Monday, Oct 09, 2017 at 10:36

Monday, Oct 09, 2017 at 10:36
Great advice "do a factory tour". Only now reading the post above do I realise that unknowingly at the time, that is what I based my decisions on in the past.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 11:50

Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 11:50
Johnno's

Both tent and trailer made in Oz
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Reply By: Alloy c/t - Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 12:15

Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 12:15
Well it perhaps goes against the ' grain ' of replies but just because its 'Australian' made does not in any way shape or form guarantee 'quality' ... in general all it really does is up the price ,we as a nation that had a good manufacturing system from shoes to cars to everything under the sun have 'priced' ourselves into oblivion ....its a bit like fanatical Harley Davidson owners / riders proclaiming all the way USA when better than 40% of a Harley is made from parts manufactured o/seas.
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Reply By: Member - Bill D - Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 21:31

Tuesday, Oct 10, 2017 at 21:31
There's an excellent Facebook forum called "Lemon Caravans and RVs in Australia". It's a voice for the many caravan buyers who've been dudded by the manufacturers (Australian and overseas). It doesn't allow any product endorsement posts. Well worth a look to see if something you're contemplating is mentioned.
We've had two small "off-road" vans. Neither was much good. We then did a lot of research looking for a small, well built off-road van, but not a camper trailer. The AOR Odyssey and possibly the Innovan fitted the bill, but they're up there in the $70,000s.
We ended up spending $20,000 on a 15 year old 11 foot Supreme Getaway pop-top. These old Supremes were built on a steel trailer base with strong trailing arm independent suspension. We'll probably spend another $10,000 on BMS, heater, solar, HWS, etc, but we'll still be $40,000 ahead. It may all end in tears, of course, but so did our previous two brand-new purchasing experiences.
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