Sales at SmartRV have been pumping, as with most of the RV dealers around the country. There is no doubt owning a caravan, motorhome or RV of some type is the goal of many across the country.

Storage in the doors middle and top, fitted privacy blinds for the windows and windscreen

We checked out a couple of models, then got the keys for a test drive of this four-berth motorhome with a nifty rear lounge area that I wanted to check out further, and see how the sleeping berths worked.

Second berth in the cab ceiling, electric drop down bed. Inset: ladder for second bed in cab

Driving the Fiat Ducato was easy with the 2020 9-speed auto gearbox; the motor does have the Eco Start pack with Stop-Start, which is a little disconcerting when you stop and the engine appears to die before you accelerate then away you go again. We have driven a few vehicles with this feature lately so we’re becoming more familiar with how they work.

Adjustable, swivel Captain chairs colour matched covering with armrests

The Fiat uses a lower, wide-track rear axle chassis. This provides improved road handling abilities, but almost more importantly the positioning of the wheel arches changes as well.

From the rear lounge forward to see the electric ceiling bed over the front living area lowered. Ladder for access.

This provides design opportunities for double floors with storage insulation for services, in-floor storage pods, one-level house flooring and removes the need for internal step-ups into areas. Essentially, more floor space to work with.

Stepping into the vehicle the lounge-dining area, swivel Captains chairs, and good-sized window. Plenty of LED lighting options as well

The Bürstner brand is manufactured in Germany under the Erwin HYMER Group, who in turn are owned by the largest RV manufacturer in the world Thor Industries. SmartRV are the exclusive importers of the brand into New Zealand.

Compact L-shaped kitchen, overhead locker storage, LED strip lighting above and around cupboards and spotlights below

The habitation entry door is on the right, set back behind the driver’s door. An electric step takes you through the extra-wide 700mm door to an internal step and up into the vehicle. There is a handy grab handle on the left of the entrance. This area has storage pocket shelves, lights for areas in the vehicle, a TV space in the living area, with the monitors and iNet Truma system above.

New design – fitted swivel bench top that covers the sink

To the right is a front-facing dinette bench seat with seat-belts, fully adjustable, with two-leaf table in front. The quality front cab Captains seats swivel to the rear for more seating options. A large picture window over the table area, big roof vent 500 x 700mm for light and ventilation in the front roof, three smaller vents throughout the living spaces and one in the bathroom.

The rear lounge is different, a two-seater couch in the middle rear, adjustable and foldable table in front. Wardrobes and bench tops both sides

All fitted with blinds and fly-screens, as are the double-glazed acrylic windows. Looking to the ceiling we have stylised roof panels with inset LED lighting. Push a button and the electric ceiling bed drops down over the dining area for a large secondary bed area. This can be accessed by a small ladder that lives in the floor storage pod. Making the bed is reasonable as you can access it from the front cab as well as the kitchen side.

The electric ceiling bed drops down to the perfect height for easy access both sides

To the left of entry on the right side is the bathroom, passage to the bedroom, opposite is the kitchen with L-shaped bench space, three-burner gas cooker with oven below. Storage above and below, drawers under the sink unit. New design bench top over the sink swivels open. Next we have the 145L fridge unit.

Pedestal cassette toilet with 12V electric flush, lots of storage

The rear of this vehicle is great – a sliding door provides privacy. It has a two-seater lounge on the back wall, wardrobes and shelf stands on both sides with room to throw some extra camp chairs around for extra visitors if you want, or put the visitors’ kids down there, and the adults in the front perhaps.

Full shower on the right, with lighting, vent, built-in storage for soaps and shampoos

Two large windows on each side offer great viewing outside. At night, again with the push of a button another good-sized bed drops down from the ceiling. So convenient, and such a great use of space it can’t be denied.

Exterior graphics offer style on the exterior, a near full-length awning is great, habitation door is on the right driver side, electric entry step

The bathroom is a really well set up dry bathroom, with a full-sized separate shower on the right with built-in storage shelves, adjustable shower fittings and with folding doors. The pedestal toilet is on the right, vanity sink has a storage shelf, cupboard underneath with a slit in the door – the toilet paper lives and is dispensed from here. The light switch for the room is under the top cupboard shelf, not the easiest to spot first off. Storage cupboard above, nice mirror and well-lit mirrored area.

We picked up the Bürstner Harmony Line Lyseo TD 745 at SmartRV in Auckland for a quick road test

The heating systems in the vehicle are efficient with convector heaters on the exterior walls, that heat the air as well as the walls and furniture. Essentially, warm air is pushed around the walls creating an air space barrier against the cold air and windows. Even the cupboard interiors have warm air flow. Heating, both air and water, is quiet with low energy consumption by all accounts.

A great unit to check out, and having the rear lounge option is a popular one here in New Zealand – we do love to kick back and look out at the views from the rear. Electric ceiling beds are the greatest addition to an RV in my opinion – a fixed bedroom is such a waste of space (depending on the length of your vehicle) – and the German’s styling certainly tucks them up and away, while still offering at least 1.810 metre height at its lowest point, over two metres at its highest.

This model is a mid-range vehicle offering two distinct living areas, comfortable travel and lifestyle for four people no problem, or spacious apartment living on wheels for two.

Tech Specs

2020 Bürstner Lyseo TD Harmony Line 745 $169,900

  • Cab Chassis
  • 2020 Fiat Ducato 2.3L 4-cyclinder turbo Euro 6 Diesel
  • 103kW 6-speed (AMT) gearbox, ABS, ESP incl. Traction Control, Hill Holder and Traction Plus and Eco Pack engine start-stop function. 16” alloy wheels

Dimensions (mm)

  • Length 7640, Width 2300, Height 2990
  • Internal height 2050 maximum, 1810 minimum under ceiling bed
  • Weight 4250, GVM 3140kg, Tare Payload 1110kg COF
  • Braked towing capacity 2000kg

Living and self-containment

  • Water fresh 120L grey 90L
  • Dometic 145L 3-way auto fridge with removable 
freezer box
  • 3-burner gas hob, combined oven/grill
  • Separate shower, Thetford pedestal 12V electric toilet, 19L cassette
  • Front ceiling bed 2000 x 1250mm, rear ceiling
1900 x 1500mm
  • Cold foam mattresses

Services

  • 230V mains, 2 x 95Ah AGM deep-cycle 12V house batteries, 150W solar panel, 1000W inverter
  • Digital control panel CP plus, iNet Box controls heating and air con. 2 x 9kg gas bottles, Truma Combi 4E gas/electric heating and 10L hot water system

Exterior

  • Thule Omnistor roll out awning with LED-lights 4500m
  • Single reversing camera
  • Warranty (T&Cs apply)
  • Warranty D Chassis and Habitation two years
  • Warranty D Water Tightness 10 years