While total exhibitor numbers were slightly down, at 230, at the 2015 Melbourne Leisurefest show at Sandown Racecourse, the Caravan Industry Association of Victoria (CIAV) claimed a 98 per cent sell-out of space more than a month ahead of the show, and all the important names were there, most with larger displays and many with new products.
After eight years, Leisurefest remains a ‘must-do’ on the Australian RV calendar and Bailey Australia, New Age, Coromal, Coronet, Golf, Van Cruiser and Trakmaster were amongst the major caravan makers wheeling out new models for their first major public showing.
NEW MODEL VANS
Bailey proudly launched the new Australian-designed, built and tested Rangefinder models and one of the two prototype vans that Caravan World accompanied across Australia in August was on display, still red dust-stained, sitting opposite a production model.
New Age displayed updated versions of its Oz Classic, Wallaby and pop-top Slider models, while Coromal showed off its new Element 10-model range, with shiny new decals and colourful new interiors with high gloss-cabinetry.
Coronet worked through show eve to get its first production slide-out model ready. The 24ft SL3 with its single bedroom slide is focused on entertaining and designed to bring out the ‘Masterchef’ in caravanners, but future slide models will also feature slide out lounge rooms.
The large Avan and Golf display introduced a larger Golf Savannah Maxxi 531 pop-top with the same unique separate shower and toilet of the smaller 501 model.
Meanwhile, Van Cruiser attracted plenty of interest with its Grange spa-bath caravan creating plenty of interest, while it also debuted a new Quattro family van.
Trakmaster introduced its new 20th Anniversary Pilbara model, the Extreme, featuring an Enerdrive lithium-ion power system and air suspension on its most aggressive cutaway chassis, while Australian Off Road added standard disc brakes to its Matrix Series IV offroad caravan.
On the product side, Dometic’s new built-in 2.6kW caravan inverter/generator created plenty of interest, as did its new RM 2356 upright refrigerator that selects one of its three possible power sources (12V, 240V or gas) via its new UES (universal energy selection) control.