A Caravan forum. Caravan Banter

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

Go Back   Home » Caravan Banter forum » Caravan, Motor Homes and Camping Newsgroups » UK Motor Caravans
Site Map Home Register Authors List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Web Partners

UK Motor Caravans (uk.rec.motorcaravans)

Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?



 
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 07:05 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Sara[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 5
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?

My Husband and I are looking to buy our first motorhome in the near future,
but have come across very few with automatic transmission which is essential
for me as I am registered disabled. I have spent hours looking at websites
and leafing through magazines and so far all we have come up with is that
the base vehicles mad by Ford or Mercedes can be automatics (or are we
wrong?). We are looking for a 6 berth but nothing too huge. I've often
felt like giving up as it seems such a minefield out there. I see some
lovely layouts but am begining to get upset all too often when I find they
don't come in automatic so are no use for me to drive.

Do any of you who already have motorhomes know of any that are automatic so
that I can at least find the direction in which to start looking. I find it
so confusing when the dealers say you can get the same van on a different
vehicle.....arrrrrhhhhhh!!! HELP!!!

Many thanks in advance

Sara


  #2 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 07:16 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
klyne
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 214
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?


"Sara" wrote in message
...
My Husband and I are looking to buy our first motorhome in the near

future,
but have come across very few with automatic transmission which is

essential
for me as I am registered disabled. I have spent hours looking at

websites
and leafing through magazines and so far all we have come up with is that
the base vehicles mad by Ford or Mercedes can be automatics (or are we
wrong?). We are looking for a 6 berth but nothing too huge. I've often
felt like giving up as it seems such a minefield out there. I see some
lovely layouts but am begining to get upset all too often when I find they
don't come in automatic so are no use for me to drive.

Do any of you who already have motorhomes know of any that are automatic

so
that I can at least find the direction in which to start looking. I find

it
so confusing when the dealers say you can get the same van on a different
vehicle.....arrrrrhhhhhh!!! HELP!!!

Many thanks in advance


Sara

Have a look at the Benimar range, not only can you have auto gearbox,
although it is dependant on you have other extras like ABS, but you can also
order them with a wider door. We are actually caravanners but were very
impressed with the Benimar range as they seem to have the sort of layouts
and toilet compartments that we would prefer. Try www.benimar.es not sure if
they have an English page. Dealers in the UK seem to be RDH www.rdh.co.uk
and BCS who don't seem to have a web site.

David - Milton Keynes


  #3 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 07:22 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Bob Webb
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 11
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?


"klyne" wrote in message
...

"Sara" wrote in message
...


Sara

Have a look at the Benimar range, not only can you have auto gearbox,
although it is dependant on you have other extras like ABS, but you can

also
order them with a wider door. We are actually caravanners but were very
impressed with the Benimar range as they seem to have the sort of layouts
and toilet compartments that we would prefer. Try www.benimar.es not sure

if
they have an English page. Dealers in the UK seem to be RDH www.rdh.co.uk
and BCS who don't seem to have a web site.

David - Milton Keynes

That's o.k. if you don't mind a Fiat with LHD.
Bob


  #4 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 07:54 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
HH
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 22
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?

Until the Fiat auto is available in RHD I think the choice is Ford or
Mercedes-Benz.

As far as I know the current Ford auto is available with a relatively
low-powered engine, whereas the Mercedes Benz auto is available with several
engine sizes and power outputs.

From experience, the Ford autobox we owned was smooth, but the lack of
absolute power, in terms of both low speed torque and ability to produce
bhp, made it less than easy to drive on busy main roads.

We have had two automatic Benzes, the first a conventional 4-speed
auto-box[312] and the present the utterly brilliant "Sprintshift"[316] which
can be driven as an auto or as a clutchless manual, with fingerlight
changing via a switch-like gearshift.

It is ultimately less smooth off the mark when driven hard than the
conventional autobox, but when driven briskly or in hilly/mountainous areas,
it's slick-shifting six speed gearbox is sheer delight. It even "blips" the
throttle on downshifts. The larger-engined Benzes also come with ABS brakes
as standard and anti-skid/traction control. The "old" box on the 312 turbo
diesel was quite thirsty when worked hard, but the 316 with Sprintshift
seems fairly miserly with the low-profile Rapido 749 strapped to its back.
It is also startlingly quick if you press hard on the loud pedal!(^_^)

It's worth taking into account that any 6 berth is going to be large - sheer
space needed to fit in the beds - and that will involve some compromises
when it comes to car parks, supermarkets and even some campsites.

If you are buying new then any of the converters who use M-B chassis should
be able to supply an auto but it will almost certainly be a special order -
even Brownhills keep in stock very few autos - and used, they are hard to
find and as far as I am aware, much sought after.

Malcolm
----------------------------------------------------


"Sara" wrote in message
...
My Husband and I are looking to buy our first motorhome in the near

future,
but have come across very few with automatic transmission which is

essential
for me as I am registered disabled. I have spent hours looking at

websites
and leafing through magazines and so far all we have come up with is that
the base vehicles mad by Ford or Mercedes can be automatics (or are we
wrong?). We are looking for a 6 berth but nothing too huge. I've often
felt like giving up as it seems such a minefield out there. I see some
lovely layouts but am begining to get upset all too often when I find they
don't come in automatic so are no use for me to drive.

Do any of you who already have motorhomes know of any that are automatic

so
that I can at least find the direction in which to start looking. I find

it
so confusing when the dealers say you can get the same van on a different
vehicle.....arrrrrhhhhhh!!! HELP!!!

Many thanks in advance

Sara




  #5 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 08:45 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Bob Douglas
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 275
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?


"Bob Webb" wrote in message
...

"klyne" wrote in message
...

"Sara" wrote in message
...


Sara

Have a look at the Benimar range, not only can you have auto gearbox,

Snip


David - Milton Keynes

That's o.k. if you don't mind a Fiat with LHD.
Bob



Which again is not entirely true, because Benimar offer an auto gearbox
option on their M-B models!

Having a Benimar myself I wouldn't hesitate to recommend, but the models on
the M-B chassis are top of the price range (and in any case, I prefer the
Fiat base - quickly dons flameproof suit!).

As already mentioned elsewhere, the most readily available models with auto
gearbox are on Mercedes Benz or Ford Chassis 9 (or for smaller vans a VW
base), but given the propensity for buliding on Fiat or Peugeot base
vehicles, these are relatively rare, and few UK converters use them.

LHD Fiat (and possibly Peugeot as they are basically the same vehicle from
the same factory) vehicles are available with Auto gearbox, but the latest I
read was that this was unlikely to be made available in RHD (at least for
the forseeable future).

One option worth considering if it fits your circumstances is Autoclutch
(refer www.TB-Turbo.co.uk for details -I don't have experience of the
product or the company - though the latter regularly receives a good press
in motorcaravanning magazines). I realise this might not address the
consequences of all disabilities since it negates the use of the clutch
pedal, but not the gear stick, but at ukp 995 fitted it certainly adds a lot
more options on vehicles if it does.

Bob

--
=================================================
Spam blocking in force. Remove nobumf from address to reply
=================================================



  #6 (permalink)  
Old July 7th 03, 09:09 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
HH
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 22
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?


"Bob Douglas" wrote in message
...

Having a Benimar myself I wouldn't hesitate to recommend, but the models

on
the M-B chassis are top of the price range (and in any case, I prefer the
Fiat base - quickly dons flameproof suit!).

----------------------------------------------------

mmmmm!

FIAT base . . front-wheel drive . . ?

I know which I prefer when the tanks are full, the lockers loaded and the
ground sticky/greasy - rear-wheel drive every time, especially with traction
control. The idea of front-wheel drive with an auto box does not inspire
confidence. I've known slipping wheels with fwd and I've known front wheels
scrabble for grip on loosely surfaced hairpins in the Alps and the
Pyrennees, whereas with rear wheel drive the tyres just bite harder and push
the weight upwards/forwards and as more weight transfers rearwards, the
better the
grip.

As for the FIAT base . . reassure us please: FIAT quality has to be
better than it once was, when FIAT stood for Fix It Again Tomorrow! (^_^)

Malcolm




  #7 (permalink)  
Old July 8th 03, 08:02 AM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Sara[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 5
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?


"Sara" wrote in message
...
My Husband and I are looking to buy our first motorhome in the near

future,
but have come across very few with automatic transmission which is

essential
for me as I am registered disabled. I have spent hours looking at

websites
and leafing through magazines and so far all we have come up with is that
the base vehicles mad by Ford or Mercedes can be automatics (or are we
wrong?). We are looking for a 6 berth but nothing too huge. I've often
felt like giving up as it seems such a minefield out there. I see some
lovely layouts but am begining to get upset all too often when I find they
don't come in automatic so are no use for me to drive.

Do any of you who already have motorhomes know of any that are automatic

so
that I can at least find the direction in which to start looking. I find

it
so confusing when the dealers say you can get the same van on a different
vehicle.....arrrrrhhhhhh!!! HELP!!!

Many thanks in advance

Sara



Thank you so much for the information you have given. It's much better to
hear it from the people who have the experience than the dealers who just
want to make another sale.

The auto gearbox for me needs to be completely automatic (ie no gearshift).
Not sure on the LHD, (admitting ignorance here) does that mean the pedals
would be the other way round too? ie accelorator and brake used by the left
foot instead of the right and with the brake on the right of the
accelorator?

Reading what has been said, it seems that it is only the Ford & Merc base
vehicles that are Automatic RHD so ok for me to drive. Hubby and I spent
quite some time looking at the Benimar Web Site last night and they do seem
to have some very good layouts that are not too long (just over 20ft for
some). I currently drive a Renault Espace which is 15ft in length so would
only have another 5ft in length to get used to (plus the height and width of
course).

Many thanks again for your helpful suggestions )

Kind regards
Sara


  #8 (permalink)  
Old July 8th 03, 09:52 AM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
David Miller
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 19
Default Which motorhomes are Automatic for disabled driver?

"Sara" wrote
[snip]
The auto gearbox for me needs to be completely automatic (ie no gearshift).
Not sure on the LHD, (admitting ignorance here) does that mean the pedals
would be the other way round too? ie accelorator and brake used by the left
foot instead of the right and with the brake on the right of the
accelorator?


Sara
Nope - don't panic! The pedals are always the same way round (brake
to left of accelerator). If you do find yourself heading for LHD,
don't worry too much - we found ours easy to get used to. It took
just 20 miles and half an hour to feel quite OK. And most of that was
probably getting used to the size of the van, as we'd never had a
motorhome before. In fact, given the choice, I think I prefer LHD -
it makes it easy to park right close up against the kerb, or to move
over against a hedge on country lanes.

Dave
 



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT. The time now is 12:45 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.0.0 RC6
Copyright 2004-2018 Caravan Banter.
The comments are property of their posters.