We took along vehicles from Bailey, made in Bristol in the UK, to see how they compared with our own home-grown Regent caravans.
We travelled through some picturesque gorges, eventually stopping at Parachilna. We had a bite to eat at the Prairie Hotel which offers an eclectic road-kill menu, serving up anything you might be likely to find by the side of the bitumen. We tucked into a hearty ‘roo burger or two and enjoyed some local scenery.
Venturing on through the dust and scrub, we next stopped at Marree at the start of the historic Birdsville and Oodnadatta Track. About halfway through our epic test, the UK-made Bailey van is actually performing just slightly better than the Aussie contender. The Regent took in a tiny bit of dust, however the Bailey is doing an excellent job of staying tightly sealed.
Read: Bailey Pegasus Verona review
Read: Regent Cruiser review
Our next stop is at the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary, 600km north of Adelaide. The sanctuary was established 45 years ago, in what may seem like rugged and inhospitable terrain, but actually hosts the most unique geology in the whole of South Australia. It features rare types of rocks, plants, soils, animals and a climate unlike any other, fostered by its unique climate conditions.
Travelling further, we eventually conclude our test at Blinman in the Central Flinders Ranges, having travelled more than 1000kms from Port Germein, often on unmade dirt roads. We pushed these vans to the limits both in terms of speeds, weather and road conditions. We came to the test thinking the Bailey would falter, and that Regent would emerge overwhelmingly victorious, however we were proved wrong on both counts, with the Bailey doing far better than we expected.