Swift Group Caravans and Motorhomes

Below we list the main brands and model ranges owned by the Swift Group

Click on the logo to visit the website (Abbey, Ace, Eccles & Mondial excepted)

swift_logo

Abbey Caravans

The first Abbey caravans appeared in 1966 when the Grimsby based firm of Cosalt sought a new opportunity for its declining container division. Two years later Cosalt acquired Safari caravans based in Stroud. In 1992 the Abbey brand was acquired by Swift from Cosalt. To set them aside from its other brands Swift gave Abbey caravans knock resistant GRP sides, a move which lasted until the last year of production in 2007/8 when aluminium side panels were fitted. In Nov 2008, in tough trading conditions, Swift phased out production of Abbey caravans as part of a move to simplify its market offering.

Last Model Ranges Previous models Dealer Specials
Abbey logo
Vogue 2 (eg 495) Aventura Freestyle (Lowdhams)
GTS (eg 420) Devon Cardinal (Davan)
Spectrum (eg 540) Dorset  
  Gloucester  
  Humber    
  Lincoln    
  Oxford    
  Piper    
  Somerset    
  Stafford    
  Warwick    
       

Ace Caravans

The Ace brand was acquired from ABI in 2001. Production of Ace caravans and motorhomes was phased out from Nov 2008 so owners are especially welcome to join our club.
Last models/ ranges Previous models/ranges Dealer Specials
Ace logo
Jubilee (eg Globetrotter) Ambassador Celebration
Award (eg Dawnstar) Globestar  
Supreme (eg Twinstar) Globetrotter  
  Prestige  
  Rallyman  
  Statesman    


Ace Motorhomes

(2001 - 2008)
Last models/ranges Previous models/ranges  
Ace logo
Capri    
Siena    
Napoli    
Milano    
Roma    
Firenze      
Airstream (eg 630EW)      
Adventurer (eg 685FB)      
       

Autocruise Motorhomes

Autocruise was acquired by Swift in October 2007. The products included camper vans and coachbuilt motorhomes, all made at Mexborough in South Yorkshire. For the 2012 model year all cochbuilt motorhomes were dropped to concentrate on panel van conversions. Favourite Autocruise layouts and features have been incorporated into the expanded Bolero and E500 ranges.

Current models/ranges Previous models/ranges    
Van Conversions   Augusta Stardream  
Accent Champagne (van conversion) Starfire
Alto Gleneagle Stargazer
Forte Oakmont Starspirit
Jazz Pace (van conversion) Starquest
Quartet Pioneer/Magellan Starstream
Rhythm Pulse (van conversion) Startrail  
Tempo Sportstar Tempo Plus  
  Starblazer (eg SL) Valentine  
  Starburst Wentworth  
       
       

Bessacarr Caravans

Bessacarr was founded in 1949 building upmarket touring caravans and holiday homes. The name comes from the town of Bessacarr near Doncaster where the owner lived although production was 10 miles away in Mexborough, South Yorkdshire. In 1980 Bessacarr acquired the Astral caravan brand but ended production of the vans after 21 years. The Astral Cameo became the Bessacarr Cameo and eventually spawned a new range of caravans. The Cameo name lives on to this day.

In 1996 Bessacarr was purchased by Swift from its holding company, the Arnold Laver timber merchant group. In September 2007 Swift decided to cease production of the Bessacarr caravan range following a major review of all its brands and as part of a long-term plan to simplify the business. This did not stop the demand for these luxury caravans and so in January 2008 Swift decided to supply limited quantities of new vans, as dealer specials, to two dealers. Those dealers were Couplands Caravans and Swindon Caravans. The vans are now only available through Couplands and are based on Swift's Conqueror range but with added luxuries. Despite only being available via one dealer they have become a runaway success.

     
Current Models Previous models  
Cameo 495 Cameo 420GL Bessacarr 470/2
Cameo 525 Cameo 465GL Cadeby
Cameo 565 Cameo 495GL Conisbrough
Cameo 570 Cameo 540 Dalton
Cameo 625 Cameo 550GL Denaby
Cameo 645 Cameo 660GLX Melton  
       

Bessacarr Motorhomes

The production of Bessacarr motorhomes was started by Swift in 1997

Current model ranges Previous model ranges  
E400 (eg E462) E600 (eg E665)  
E500 (eg E520) E700 (eg E769)  
     
     
       
       

Eccles Caravans

Founded in 1919 by Bill Riley Snr., Eccles is the oldest surviving caravan brand in the UK, if not the world. From the outset it produced up market caravans and even motorhomes, the latter from converted military vehicles left over from the First World War. By the Second World War Eccles had become quite successful, exporting caravans as far afield as India and Africa. During the war Eccles turned its caravans into portable workshops and radio shacks also building ambulances and searchlight vehicles.

After the war competition from other manufacturers producing lighter, cheaper, caravans moved the market away from Eccles’ heavy and expensive models. In 1960 Bill Riley retired shutting the factory and selling up to Sprite who moved production to their Newmarket base.

Under the guidance of Sprite, Eccles vans became trendsetters featuring teak wood, white vinyl and double glazing.

During the early 1990’s the Swift Group bought Sprite Leisure and with it Eccles, moving production to Swift’s factory in Cottingham, Nr Hull. In 1996, under the new ownership, Eccles was re-launched under the Sterling brand and again given a new lease of life.

In 2009, to celebrate Eccles' 90th anniversary, all models within the Sterling Eccles range were given special anniversary graphics.

The Eccles name continues today as key part of the Sterling offering with layouts and specification closely matching the Swift Challenger SE range.

   
Pre war models Post war models Eccles
Active
Coronation
Enterprise Elan
Progress Elite
   
     
     

Escape Motorhomes

The Escape range was launched in February 2009 as the 'ideal entry point' to owning a coachbuilt motorhome. A distinguishing feature until 2012 was the the Imperial Blue cab, which was common to all models. Since those early days Escape motorhomes have gone on to be a great success due, at least in part, to the fantastic value for money they offer.

     
Escape
Current models    
622    
624    
664    
686    
696    
       

Mondial Motorhomes

Mondial motorhomes are stylish van conversions. The brand was re-launched in 2008 after a break of a few years. The move was made possible by Swift's aquisition of Autocruise and its production facility at Mexborough in South Yorkshire. The brand was dropped for the 2012 model year in favour of the Autocruise panel van range.

     
Mondial logo
Recent Models Earlier models  
Mondial EK Mondial GT  
Mondial EL Mondial GT Plus  
Mondial RL    
Mondial FB      
       

Sprite Caravans

Founded by Sam Alper and his brother Henry shortly after the Second World War, Sprite grew to become one of the biggest and most iconic names in British caravan history. Early models were given the brand name 'Streamlight' and included the Rover, Ranger and the Elf. The first caravan to carry the Sprite name was built from tempered hardboard in late 1949 and sold for less than £200.

By 1963 Alper had founded Caravans International (CI) which had purchased the Eccles and Bluebird Caravan brands. CI went into liquidation in 1982 and was bought by Cosalt who subsequently sold the tourer business to Swift Leisure in 1994. Sprite vans were renamed Sterling in 1995, the name Sprite living on briefly as the budget model. In 2005 Swift re-launched the Sprite brand with 3 new model ranges true to the original Sprite values of light weight combined with affordability and dependability. It was an instant success and remains so today.

     
Current models/ranges Previous models/ranges Dealer Specials
Alpine 2 Aerial Musketeer TD Archway Sport (White Arches)
Alpine 4 Cadet Sprint Firebrand (Barrons/Discover)
Major 4 Clubman Sprite GL Freestyle (Lowdhams)
Major 4 FB Colt Sprite XL Lifestyle (Marquis)
Major 6 Countryman Sprite 14 S-Line (Kimberley)
Major 6 TD Charisma Sprite 400    
Quattro FB Esprit Sprite Lite    
Quattro EW Europa Streamlite    
  Finesse 2      
         

Sterling Caravans

Sterling caravans came into being in 1995 when Swift renamed the newly purchased Sprite brand. The name was dreamt up by Peter Smith and Tony Hailey at Leeds Bradford airport whilst waiting to board a plane. Along with the Sprite brand came Eccles, one of the oldest names in caravanning. Eccles was re-launched under the Sterling brand and lives on to this day. The Eccles brand celebrated its 90th birthday in 2009 with caravans having special edition anniversary graphics to mark the occasion.

     
Sterling logo
Current models/ranges Previous models/ranges Dealer Specials
Eccles Sport Sprite Cuillin
  442 584 Trekker Eccles Lux Line (Kimberley)
  514 586 Europa (eg 495)  
  554 640 Jewel  
      Opal  
      382 Sport    
       
Eccles SE      
  Topaz, Quartz Jade    
  Moonstone Amethyst Trekker    
  Solitaire Coral Voyager    
  Ruby Wayfarer      
           
       
Elite      
  Amber   Diamond    
  Searcher   Emerald    
  Explorer   Opal    
       
Continental      
  480 580      
  570 645      
       

Swift Caravans

Swift has been producing caravans since 1964. From small beginnings in a garage down by the docks in Hull Swift has risen to become the largest manufacturer in the UK with a portfolio including motorhomes and holiday homes. Early success was driven by founder Ken Smith and his wife Joan. In the boom years of the late 60's and early 70's Smith saw the need to make the brand stand out and opted for triple front windows, each of them opening. It was an eye catching and unusual design at the time but one that has since been widely adapted by others.

Swift has always invested heavily in new technology and in 1970 moved to a brand new factory in Dunswell road, Cottingham. In the 1990's as times got harder many manufacturers got out of touring van production but not Swift who spent some £30m buying them out. An early acquisition was Abbey, purchased from Cosalt in 1992. It included Tony Hailey, managing director at Abbey, who became managing director at Swift. In the following years Swift went on to acquire Sprite (1994), Bessacarr (1996), Ace (2001) and Autocruise (2008).

Swift began producing motorhomes in 1986 and entered the holiday home market in 2004.

In 2006 Swift spent some £20m expanding its Cottingham site with the building of a 126,000 square foot production hall and new access road from the Beverley bypass.

Today Swift remains in the Smith family with the founder's son Peter Smith as chairman. He is assisted by a senior team of experienced personnel.

     
Swift logo
Current models/ranges Previous models/ranges Dealer Specials
Challenger Sport Alhouette Accord (Mendip/Discover)
  442 564 Baronette Archway (White Arches)
  514 584 Charisma (eg 570) Anniversary (?)
  524 586 Classic Ashmere (Harringtons/Discover)
  544 636 Corniche Azzura (?)
  554 640 Coronette Barnwell (White Arches)
  Corvette Bessacarr Cameo (Couplands)
Challenger SE Cottingham Blakemere (Harringtons/Discover)
  480 590 Danette Bowmere (Harringtons/Discover)
  530 620 Rapide Bridgemere (Harringtons/Discover)
  565 625 Silhouette Celebration (Glossop Caravans)  
  570 630 Sport 382 Celeste (Cranham)  
  580 645   Coastline (Highbridge)  
        Colonsay (Knowepark)  
    Corniche (Wandahome)  
Conqueror   Delamere (Harringtons/Discover)  
  480 570   Expression (Michael Jordan)  
  530 630   Fairway (Broad Lane)  
  565 645   Freestyle (Lowdhams)  
        GTS (Newport)  
    Hartwell (White Arches)  
Elegance   Hi-Style (Lowdhams)  
  480 580   Island Arran (Knowepark)  
  570 645   Island Colonsay (Knowepark)  
    Island Islay (Knowepark)  
    Island Shuna (Knowepark)  
    Kudos (Campbells)  
    Lifestyle (Barrons/Discover)  
    Meridian (Goodalls)  
    Merlin (Campbells)  
    Provence (?)  
    Rockingham (White Arches)  
    Safari (Stuart Longton Caravans)  
    Sandymere (Harringtons/Discover)  
    Signature (Catterick)  
    Speedbird (Barrons)  
    Sudborough (White Arches)  
    Twywell (White Arches)  
    Utopia (Broad Lane)  
    Woodford (White Arches)  
       


Swift Motorhomes

Swift started manufacturing motorhomes in 1985

Current models/ranges Previous models/ranges Dealer Specials
Sundance Belair Freestyle (Lowdhams)
  532LP 622FB Royale Lifestyle (Barrons)
  582PR 624FB Gazelle  
  584PR 636L Suntor  
  594RS 644SD Capri  
      Voyager (eg 685FB)  
     
Bolero      
  630EW 712SB      
  630PR 722FB      
  682FB 724FB      
  684FB        
       
Kontiki      
  649 669      
  659 679