From the outside, the true extent of the redesign of the popular Dethleffs Nomad series is hard to gauge as the caravan’s proven shape has been preserved, apart from the inclusion of a new rear moulding with integrated lighting, lateral chrome trim and chrome manoeuvring handles (identical to the rear of Dethleffs’ top-of-the-line Exclusiv range).

Lots of smart technology with USB chargers and LED lights on a moveable track for perfect positioning

It’s inside the 2020 Nomads where you’ll discover a major transformation. Virtually everything has changed giving the Nomad a much more modern and sophisticated look. Any elements from Nomad’s previous years that could be considered, perhaps, ‘conventional’ or ‘discreetly conservative’ have been replaced with sleek surfaces and an ultramodern, neutral colour palette. It’s a perfect balance of classic beauty, practical features and modern design.

The kitchen storage is well equipped with pull-out pantry, drawers and overhead cupboard storage available

“Dethleffs’ German design team tailored the new Nomad for active middle-aged couples,” says Brent Thurlow of Central RV, New Zealand’s exclusive retailer of Dethleffs caravans. “Active couples in their prime enjoying an increased amount of leisure time – often after their kids have left home – have indicated that they prefer fresh, clean colours, and a timeless design. All of this is offered by our new Nomad,” says Brent.

Fully featured kitchen with under-bench gas oven, three gas-burner hob on the bench, soft-close drawers and illuminated splashback. Large 142L fridge unit with storage below

The 2020 Nomads are available in six layouts in New Zealand, one of which is completely new to the Dethleffs range. The redesigned series includes both queen and twin-single bed layouts all with spacious, cleverly designed living areas.

At the rear is the full-size bathroom with separate shower cubicle and premium vanity

The new Nomads come with a comprehensive standard specification that includes double glazing, 360-degree insulation, an anti-sway coupling, ATC trailer control, premium self-adjusting brakes, maximum chassis upgrades, alloy wheels, Truma Combi gas–electric hot water and heating system, a GRP roof, indirect interior lighting, large three-way fridge/freezer, and climate-regulating, ergonomic seven-zone mattresses. [See full spec list]

Lots to like in this bright interior: four-person dinette with large picture window, the bedroom area separated in the rear, twin single beds or convert to a large double bed, with Swiss-made mattresses

In the kitchen, the new Nomad models feature a new high-quality cooker unit with matching sink and illuminated splashback. A conveniently placed LED strip light, inset under the front edge of the bench, illuminates the drawers and pull-out pantry when opened. Cupboard fronts are completely different to earlier Nomad models, featuring glossy warm grey and off-white tones with matt silver handles. The Nomad’s wood panelling has been upgraded to a blonde Scandi-style timber finish, creating a light, relaxed feel throughout.

The Nomad 490 EST is a single axle caravan with a good towing weight of 1800kg. (Single and tandem axle available in other Nomad layouts with GVM from 1800-2500kg.)

New layout

The Nomad 490 EST is a twin-single layout – a bedding configuration becoming increasingly popular with New Zealand caravanners. It includes an always-popular rear bathroom, with window and generous storage space, which extends across the entire 230cm width of the caravan. The single beds are two metres long, ensuring even taller adults can stretch out comfortably. With the insertion of a supplied additional mattress section, the twin singles can be quickly converted into a California king-size bed measuring a whopping 2.1m wide x 2.0m long.

In this floor plan, the focus of the design is on maximum sleeping comfort and a spacious, well-equipped bathroom – traditionally these two sought-after elements have only been available together in significantly larger models.

Tech Specs

Dethleffs Nomad 490 EST 3-berth caravan
Length: caravan 5900mm, overall with tow bar 7290mm
Width: 2300mm
Weight: GVM 1800kg, tare 1400kg = payload 400kg
Bed size: 1900mm and 2000mm x 850mm wide
Self-containment features
142L three-way automatic tower fridge/freezer
Truma combi LPG/230V heating and hot water system with AirPlus ventilation system
80L fresh and 90L grey on-board tanks (monitored. Larger tank upgrade available, ask about cost)
175W solar system and AGM deep-cycle battery
Exterior features
Double-glazed windows, fully insulated floor, roof and walls
Large, vertical-opening front storage locker
GFK glass fibre composite roof
AL-KO heavy-duty chassis and suspension for extreme payloads
ATC trailer control, anti-sway coupling, and AAA self-adjusting brakes
14-inch alloy wheels with heavy-duty commercial tyres