Tim van Duyl - Caravan World Creative Director
Last year, in our first taste of Titan Caravans at Caravan of the Year, the 480 and 490 blew us away. This year was always going to be more of a challenge, with a larger lineup of brands joining the week-long shootout.
Did Titan come away with massive success again? No. But did it hold its head high? You betcha. Armed with a 720 Tardis and 575 Blackhawk built to the same standards as last year’s winners but with more space and more inclusions, the Titans certainly held up to their name as heavyweights with plenty of punch where it matters.
The 720 Tardis is the biggest van in the current range, but it still packed more in than you could expect looking at its sleek exterior. At 23 feet, it has the length to be able to run a rear club lounge, central split bathroom and front bedroom.
I love this layout as it has the space needed for a gang to play cards at the table, the room to dry off easily behind the closed doors of the ensuite and a bedroom that you can fully seal off from the noise down the back.
It also has an impressive volume of power creation and storage capacity with 800W of solar and 600A of lithium battery, that's enough to not worry about it in cooler climates or to allow for a few hours of daily runtime of the AC in the hotter parts of summer. It also has a decent volume of water capacity with enough (285L fresh, 95L grey) to last 7–10 days, more if you consider using the jerry cans.
The 720 Tardis might not look like an extreme offroader and it’s not. It is warrantied for offroad work and I think it will be right at home touring the Flinders or staying long periods on farm stays outback, but it is not the van for pushing the limits of speed on unmarked tracks. This is a van for the slow lap off the beaten track and I think it's near perfect for it.
One of the standouts in the whole Titan range is seen in the 720 Tardis: its construction methodology. Using sandwich panel construction is not necessarily innovative these days but the style of the panel is. The team uses a panel that is bonded and then baked to ensure it properly binds together. With more than a thousand vans now on the road in Australia alone, not to mention those in NZ, the reports are that it is durable and living up to its strong warranty too.
John Ford - Caravan World Editor-At-Large
This largest-yet Titan is a luxury off-grid tourer destined for couples to get into the bush for extended trips in comfort, so a reliable supply of power and water is essential. The review van included Titan’s top-of-the-line stage three electronics pack with 800W of solar across four panels. The sun power feeds into three 200Ah Victron lithium batteries, so no expense has been spared here. The regulators, chargers and management system are all Victron and the inverter delivers 3000W of 240V power, so there’s enough to comfortably run the air-con all day, the all-important coffee machine each morning and the exterior induction cooktop, which is manufactured locally in Queensland by BushTucker.
Twin gas bottles run the internal stove. Immense storage options allow you to include ample food and drink supplies, and the satellite dish and Fusion sound system ensure you are self-contained for entertainment.
So, while there are systems on the market with more grunt, the Tardis has a sensible supply that will keep a couple going off-grid for as long as the water and toilet cassette hold up.
Construction starts with a robot-welded 3.5mm chassis that is x-rayed for faults in the quality control process. Next, modern body construction sees walls, roof and floor built from composite panels that bond together into a robust, weather-resistant entity. The Tardis is a big and heavy van, so the company’s recent switch to AL-KO suspension is a positive move for anyone worried about the durability of the underpinnings over time and rough treatment.
All appliances, windows and doors are locally sourced products with good reputations for reliability. The lounge is roomy, comfortable and finished in leather for an added touch of style. And while the fit on some cupboard doors isn’t always perfect, we need to look at the competitive price of such a large van. Titan achieved ISO 9001:2015 quality assurance recently for its management systems. This is an internationally recognised standard to ensure organisations provide products that meet customer expectations.
As long as you keep up to date with your annual maintenance schedule, the Titan Care warranty is impressive. If there is a failure within the caravan or with any components, including appliances, Titan Care must be notified immediately. Titan Care will then arrange all claims with the suppliers of the appliances or accessories. Notably, Titan was the only entrant to bring a copy of its warranty document and it is easily accessed by owners online. In addition, a 24-hour helpline gets owners in touch with a repair agent for any issues.
The fitout and internal construction are covered for three years and the chassis and suspension warranty is five years. The caravan body is guaranteed for 10 years against delamination and water and dust ingress.
Allison Watt - Caravan World Deputy Editor
At just under $150,000, the Tardis is not an inexpensive caravan, but it certainly offers a lot of bang for its buck. Titan designed the Tardis to be as user-friendly as possible for its owners, so its price tag reflects the large number of creature comforts the company has packed into this 23ft van.
The layout is a popular one for couples who like their own space away from each other occasionally — the front bedroom is separated from the rear living area by a central bathroom. All the main appliances that you would expect in a van these days are standard. There are no less than three TVs — two inside and one outside — and an impressive solar/power system to keep all the appliances running if you are free camping.
When I hear Tardis, my mind goes straight to Dr Who because the Tardis (which is an acronym of Time And Relative Dimensions In Space) was the time and space travelling machine from the science fiction in which they used to travel around.
What you might not know is that Tardis is used to describe surprisingly spacious accommodation, so the name that Titan has given to this 23ft luxury van makes perfect sense. In fact, it’s the longest of all the vans we judged at Caravan of the Year 2023.
The X-Factor for the Tardis is in its space and liveability. It is a couples van but with more than enough room for two people to live very comfortably. It has a large, rear club lounge, a very large kitchen with workable areas on both sides of the van and a centre ensuite with toilet and vanity on one side and a separate shower cubicle on the other side. Step out of the bathroom into the spacious rear bedroom and there’s plenty of space to towel off and get dressed for a day of exploring.
As well as space in spades, the Tardis has all the creature comforts you will ever need including a full oven, grill and cooktop, large compressor fridge, air-conditioning, heating, fans, washing machine, stereo system and three televisions — two inside and one outside.
And what I really like about the Tardis is that it’s big enough for couples to get away from each other — and let’s face it, we all need to do that occasionally. So, if one half wants to hit the hay early, they can shut themselves away in the bedroom up front, away from the noise of the TV at the club lounge down the back.
Malcolm Street - Caravan World Field Editor
Titan’s Blackhawk 720 Tardis joins several other vans in this year’s COTY as being in the large category. A tare mass of 3063kg and a payload of just over 900kg make it a big towing rig. Marginal for a vehicle with a maximum towing mass of 3500kg, it's much better suited to the Chevrolet Silverado LTZ that we used for towing. Fuel consumption for the 6.2L petrol engine is a consideration. Towing length is another, and the combined rig measures something like 15m (49ft), requiring the driver's full attention for an offroad caravan. On the road, the Tardis towed quite smoothly behind the Silverado and even for a big van, there was little snatching and jerking. Around tight corners, care had to be taken not to cut the corner, especially when facing oncoming traffic.
One of the benefits of the Tardis' length is that it enables a feature I quite favour, a rear club lounge with windows all around — a preference that originates from my early motorhoming days around New Zealand. That same van length also allows for a decent-sized split kitchen, which every travelling chef will appreciate, both the benchtop space and the generous storage.
Something else that’s split is the bathroom with the shower cubicle on one side and the toilet/vanity on the other. That arrangement also effectively separates the bed/bathroom from the living space. A win-win all around. Up front, just like the rear area, the island bed is surrounded by windows too. Apart from the usual benefits, space perception is excellent in a slightly confined space.
The Tardis is well equipped for those who like to live outside. A slide-out kitchen is fitted into the front tunnel storage. It has an induction hob, stainless steel sink and two hinged extensions. In addition to that, the drawbar storage box has a slide-out fitted barbecue. Cooking any which way you like! With a fair chunk of the external storage taken by cooking facilities, part of the tunnel storage is still available at the front and there’s the rear area under the club lounge with bin doors on both sides. On the day of our judging, it was very overcast, which showed to good effect the extensive external lighting on the Tardis. There are seven fittings which are very bright indeed, but you won’t get any complaints from the neighbours because the van has external light dimmer controls and also dual light control — white or yellow light — which helps with not attracting insects. Apart from anything else, the Blackhawk 720 Tardis is quite a stylish-looking van and like its namesake, it is quite big on the inside but definitely not that small on the outside.
Titan Blackhawk 720 Tardis Specs
WEIGHTS AND MEASURES
|Overall length||9.4m (30ft 10in)|
|External body length||7.2m (23ft 7in)|
|External body width||2.3m (7ft 6in)|
|Travel height||3.1m (10ft 2in)|
|Internal height||2m (6ft 6in)|
|Structure||XPS closed cell structural foam and aluminium sub frame|
|Cladding||Gel coat fibreglass|
|Chassis||6in galvanised chassis|
|Suspension||AL-KO ENDURO X|
|Brakes||AL-KO 12in offroad|
|Wheels||16in alloy wheels|
|Water||3 x 95L freshwater tanks, 1 x 95L grey water tank|
|Battery||3 x Victron 200Ah, 1 x Victron 3000W MultiPlus II Invertor Charger (MultiTouch 70 Display)|
|Solar||4 x 200W Solar|
|Gas||2 x 9kg|
|Sway control||BMPRO Sway Control|
|Cooking||Thetford 353 Combo Gas 3-hob|
|Fridge||Dometic Compressor (Smart Fridge)|
|Washing machine||3.2kg Fresca|
|Hot water||Truma combi heater|
Titan Blackhawk 720 Tardis price from $129,990
- Stage 3 off-grid package
- GripSport bike rack
- SatKing Pro Satellite
- BushTucker custom induction slide-out kitchen
Titan Blackhawk 720 Tardis price as shown $149,990
P: (07) 3216 4555
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