Camper Trailer of the Year 2016 Winner MDC Venturer LT Cape York Edition
Let’s take a closer look at what makes the winner of the Camper Trailer of the Year 2016 Budget category tick.
Camping is all about getting out there and exploring this beautiful country of ours with friends and family, but riddle me this – when did camping become so expensive? Sure, our camper trailers are more luxurious these days, but does that mean we need to fork out an arm, leg and a second mortgage in order to have a well set up camper trailer?
Well, the guys at Market Direct Campers don’t seem to think so and, after seeing the value for money they’ve stuffed into their Venturer LT (Cape York Edition), I believe them. They’ve built the Venturer LT (Cape York Edition) to be a totally self-sufficient, go-absolutely-anywhere camper, jam-packed with just about every gizmo and gadget you could think of but, more amazingly, they’ve got it on the market and available to the average Joe for the astonishingly low price of $19,990. Yep, this thing’s got the lot for less than $20K!
In fact, we were so surprised with the number of features MDC squeezed into this camper for the price that we even sought written confirmation from MDC themselves. MDC categorically assured us the price is, in fact, 100 per cent correct. Amazing! So, with that in mind, let’s take a closer look.
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
I was blown away by the amount of goodies the folks at MDC have managed to stuff into this thing, but let’s start with the basics. The Venturer LT (Cape York Edition) is powered by two 100Ah batteries, which can be charged using several methods. The IDC25 12/24V 25A Projecta ‘Intelli-Charge’ DC-DC charger is the brains of the outfit, and basically manages the charge received by your vehicle’s alternator, 240V mains power or the 120W solar panel cleverly mounted on the boat rack as standard.
Accessing the power is easy with six 12V outlets strategically mounted around the camper, with two USB points and two 240V outlets to top it all off. There’s also LED lighting throughout and a Powertech 1000W inverter to top it all off. Geez, talk about the whole kit and caboodle, eh? To add more punch, there’s even a complete Fusion marine-grade sound system, so those campfire tunes are handy at the flick of the switch.
Now I know what you’re thinking – they must compromise on quality to offer all these features at this price, right? Well, let’s squash that thought right now. The wiring harness is a professional looking job, with well-known brands used in the fit-out. The only thing you’ll need that’s not supplied as standard in this setup is a fridge but, let’s face it, chances are you’ll either already have one, or want to choose one that suits you, anyway.
Let me start by saying this camper has had plenty of hours put into the layout and design side of things, and I’d be lying if I said it didn’t show. Everything is where it should be. I mean, it’s things like the fridge being close to the kitchen, and the storage drawers under the bed being at an easy-to-reach height that make all the difference. The spare wheel is simple to get to and the lights are exactly where they need to be but, just as importantly, turning them on doesn’t involve a nightly game of hide and seek!
Canvas-wise, we’re looking at a 16oz close weave material with double stitching throughout. The tent itself is a neat yet fairly practical layout with plenty of ventilation thanks to three windows and three doors all with midge-proof netting. The annexe is massive, and what I like about the tent’s sidewall design is you can roll up the side of the main tent so the annexe becomes a part of the main tent, like one big room. This is a great feature for young families as you can keep a closer eye on the young fellas. Admittedly, there’s a fair bit of setting up if you’re going all-out with it, but let’s face it, if you’re sticking around for a week or two, it’s well worth the effort.
Like I said, it’s not every day you come across a camper that’s completely set up with quality gear for less than $20K. Sure, with 185kg of weight on the tow ball and a Tare of 1340kg, it’s a bit on the heavy side but, realistically, that’s what you get with most hardfloor campers these days, especially if they’re loaded with more accessories than you can poke a stick at.
MDC has come a long way in terms of quality and true value for money over the years, and the Venturer LT (Cape York Edition) is testament to that. It’s finished off extremely well, uses quality gear throughout and has obviously been designed, set up and improved by real camping enthusiasts. It really is an all-in-one package that’s hard to fault, and for just $19,990, it’s a bloody good deal!
HITS & MISSES
- Unbeatable value for money
- Boat rack with built-in solar panel
- Tent wall opens out to the annexe
- Ball weight is excessive
- Simple flip-over tent, but still needs several pole adjustments
- Bed is quite high so you need to climb into it
Check out the full feature in issue #97 February 2016 of Camper Trailer Australia magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration.