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    Buyer’s guide: Hybrid caravans versus camper trailers

     Buyer’s guide: Hybrid caravans versus camper trailersHybrid caravans and camper trailers each bring with them a range of benefits, fantastic features, and a certain style of living – as well as some potential disadvantages. With the introduction of hybrids to the market, there is no longer such a clear caravan versus camper debate. These new, compact options offer many of the luxuries of a traditional caravan yet with the ease of use and smaller scale that is often the winning benefit of a camper trailer. Meanwhile, campers are becoming more innovative, bridging the gap even further. And within each range, models can vary from one version to the next, creating even more confusion on how to make the most informed decision. But as you weigh the pros and cons or compare that camper or hybrid caravan for sale near you, when it comes to choosing between the two — the deciding factor is your requirements. 

    Mars Campers has a range of hybrids and campers for sale that will tick all the boxes for future adventurers — it is simply a matter of finding the one that best suits your needs and travel lifestyle. 

    So, to unveil some of the pros and cons of hybrids versus campers, we shall compare the luxurious Mars 15 Deluxe hybrid caravan and the sleek Mars Endurance camper trailer and shed some light on making the right choice based on your requirements. 

    The Mars 15 Deluxe: Pros

    1. Perfectly compact: Whether you have a young family, enjoy weekend adventures, or want to head out on some serious offroad touring, the Mars 15 is the perfect hybrid caravan for your needs. A king-size bed offers owners a piece of luxury, while the dinette seat converts into a bed to fit one kid or extra passenger. Keeping true to the beneficially compact nature of hybrids, two overhead bunks fold away to allow this hybrid to be an ideal family traveller without feeling too cramped. Each bunk features privacy curtains to give the kids their own space.
    2. Internal and external living: No matter where you travel — on-road or off — travel with all the creature comforts of home and more. The Mars 15 is fitted with a stylish internal kitchen, complete with four-burner stove, sink, microwave tray, plenty of bench space and 140L Dometic fridge. An external fridge slide and slide-out stainless-steel external kitchen with sink, cold water tap, four-burner stove, dish rack and large bench will keeping you living outdoors as much as in!
    3. Bathroom: One of the main dividing points between a hybrid caravan and camper is the inclusion of a bathroom. Tucked tidily at the front of the hybrid, the Mars 15 features a 34in shower room with Dometic cassette toilet and storage shelf. No longer be reliant on the availability of amenities at your campsite or purchasing additional gear to take with you as you travel.
    4. Liveability: The Mars 15 offers a four-seater internal dining space, the black leather seats bringing a touch of luxury to this compact, on-the-road way of living. As mentioned, the dinette seating converts into a single bed suitable for either a child or adult. A 24in LED TV with removable bracket is located by the king-size bed, creating a cosy nook perfect for that week-end couples’ getaway or family huddles. A 4m electric awning is standard, effortlessly expanding the living area of this compact hybrid. 
    5. Internal storage: Ample internal storage including interior and exterior cupboards can be found throughout the Mars 15 – a feature that is one of the notable advantages or a hybrid versus a camper. 
    6. Spacious size: As the name would attest, this 15ft hybrid caravan offers a premium travelling experience, perfectly balancing its compact nature with a well-designed, modern layout to enjoy all year round, from extended holidays to those impulsive weekend getaways when the weather is too beautiful to resist. Owners can truly enjoy the best-of-both-worlds nature of a hybrid caravan. 
    7. Low maintenance: Not only is this hybrid a complete campsite in one unit, but it also requires near-zero set up on arrival – simply unlock the door, pop the top, and you’re ready to go!
    8. Offroad wonder: The Mars 15 is designed for serious offroad exploration and to withstand Australia’s harshest climates. Thick checkerplate body armour, four rock sliders, independent suspension, R16 AT mud terrain tyres, 4 gas shock absorbers, and much more will keep you safe on and offroad. 
    9. Fitted with features: Numerous additional features can be added to the Mars 15, ensuring owners have not only a fully capable but also customisable off-road home. Among others, a solar panel and regulator, annex upgrade and jerry can holders are optional upgrades that strive to ensure comfort and practicality.
    10. Affordability: Starting at $59,990, the Mars 15 hybrid caravan is the ideal option for families, couples or adventurers who want to travel on and offroad without a worry, and the design balances comfort and compact practicality perfectly. Owners will receive a five-year structural warranty and fantastic customer service. 

    hybrid off road campers and caravans

    However, while the benefits of a hybrid caravan can practically speak for themselves, there are always some drawbacks to consider:

    1. Although hybrids are lighter than caravans, you must still consider your tow vehicle’s towing capacity and offroad capabilities. Depending on the weight of the hybrid, which can vary model to model, you may need a larger tow vehicle that is suitable for your offroad adventures. 
    2. The size of a hybrid is the major draw factor – offering similar internal comfort as a caravan yet with the offroad flexibility of a camper. But to achieve this, certain features, and benefits of a caravan – such as a full-size fridge and roomier bunks and living areas – must be compromised. 
    3. The cost of insurance for a hybrid caravan will be more expensive than a camper due to the size, weight, internal features and overall worth of the hybrid.
    Camper trailer advantages

    Benefits of camper trailers

    In comparison, campers offer a different kind of experience. On paper, many may consider them a step closer to traditional camping, but do not be fooled. These sleek campers can pack as much of a punch as a hybrid! 

    1. Sleek aerodynamic design: As shown by the Mars Endurance, a camper is an even smaller and sleeker option than a hybrid caravan, making it a pleasure to tow on the road — you might even forget it’s there! And when not in use, campers are much easier to tuck out of sight or put in storage than a hybrid or its older sibling, the caravan.
    2. Sustainability: And going hand in hand with being smaller in size, the lighter weight of a camper equals less fuel usage and therefore less emissions.
    3. Offroad capability: Compact and light, the Mars Endurance is the perfect companion, no matter where or how far you go. Independent suspension, and 6 stud 16in tyres and a single spare will take you offroad with ease. And being smaller in size, a camper is much easier to tow to those out-of-the-way locations. 
    4. Affordability: One of the main advantages of a camper is that, generally, it will be cheaper than a hybrid or traditional caravan. Starting at $27,990, the Mars Endurance is one of the best value-for money campers that can be found on the market. 
    5. Family comfort: Unlike the hybrid, campers such as the Mars Endurance have more flexibility in terms of sleeping space. This camper includes an oversize queen bed that sleeps two adults, while the dinette converts into a double bed that can sleep up to three kids. An additional ‘kids’ room’ extension is optional. 
    6. Internal dining: The internal bar lounge and table is generously sized for the whole family, comfortably fitting four adults and two children. 
    7. Full kitchen: While it is external, the Mars Endurance camper features a fully functional stainless-steel slide-out kitchen with four-burner stove, sink, dishrack and large bench space. An internal 20L mini bar fridge keeps the necessities on hand inside. 
    8. Ample storage: Campers often face the disadvantage of having less storage than a hybrid caravan. However, as always, this varies between models. Ample interior and exterior cupboards and storage can be found throughout the Mars Endurance, including door storage, pantry area and pole storage. 
    9. Features: Much like the Mars 15 hybrid caravan, the Mars Endurance camper includes many of the same features that offer premium comfort and convenience. A 24in LED TV with removeable bracket is fitted inside, while an external control panel offers the same ease of use as its caravan counterpart. 
    10. Optional upgrades: There are a variety of optional upgrades available for campers, and the options for the Mars Endurance include a kids’ room, portable toilet, winch upgrade, boat rack and more. 

    While the camper has numerous benefits and a different kind of flexibility in design than the hybrid, there are some less convenient sides to this option. 

    1. The lack of a built-in bathroom can often be the deciding factor between a camper versus a hybrid caravan. Not having one included means either sourcing additional gear or being reliant on the availability of campsite amenities. 
    2. The set-up and pack-up time and effort required for a camper can be inconvenient, particularly after a long day or the weather turns against you. 
    3. Campers require more maintenance than a hybrid, particularly the canvas, which must be aired and dried before it can be packed away. 

    Choosing whether to buy a hybrid caravan or camper is not easy. With each option comes a certain number of advantages or disadvantages, all determined by your needs and the kinds of adventures you want to undertake. Hybrids can offer the perks of a luxurious caravan — particularly when it comes to bathrooms and internal kitchens, but campers are more flexible for larger groups or families, where you want to go, and ease of storage. So now that we have laid out some of the pros and cons, it’s your turn to make the final call!

    Next steps

    At Mars Campers we work hard to develop the best value for money camper trailers with a view of helping you create memorable experiences with your loved ones.

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