Olympic Pursuit Z3: Review
Easily-towable and with a full-rear bathroom, the single-axle Olympic Pursuit Z3 offers flexible travelling in a small package.
Olympic Pursuit Z3 highlights
- Single-axle van
- Front bedroom, full width bathroom
- Towable by wide range of vehicles
There’s a line of thought in the caravan manufacturing business that full-size bathrooms and tandem-axles go together. So it is something of a surprise when a single-axle van appears with the contemporary front bedroom, full-width rear bathroom (FBRB) layout.
Such is the case with this Olympic Pursuit Z3 caravan. With a length of just 5.4m (17ft 9in), it’s not a large van. And with a tare weight of 1750kg, it is a good prospect for smaller tow vehicles as well.
CONSTRUCTION AND OFFROAD ABILITY
So how does the Pursuit Z3 stack up? For a start, it’s built in the standard Australian style with a 4in railed DuraGal box section chassis which rides on leaf spring suspension and 15in alloy wheels. Both the 80L water tanks have galvanised sheet protection and are located forward of the axle. Most of the pipework and electrics are strapped up out of the way but I thought a bit more cable protection would not have gone astray.
There are no surprises on the drawbar, with a standard ball coupling, centre-mounted jockey wheel and handbrake. Above the mesh rack which sits between the drawbar rails are two 9kg gas cylinders. And, instead of a traditional front boot, there’s good-sized tunnel boot with access doors on either side.
In keeping with good Aussie caravan manufacturing design, the body of the van has a timber frame with insulation between the frames and aluminium cladding around the outside. Completing the basic bodywork are Seitz double-glazed acrylic windows and a Camec security door. Olympic has obviously designed this van with al-fresco living in mind. There is a Dometic awning as well as a picnic table, two wall lights, grab handle light, external speakers and 240V/12V sockets and a TV antenna connection.
To the left of the entry door is the island bed and, given the bathroom is across the rear, that leaves space for the café style dinette to the right and the kitchen filling the space along the opposite wall.
Olympic has clearly decided on a square look for its cabinetry but that is nicely offset by the ceiling panels which have been extended out from the side overhead lockers. Apart from anything else, these act as good mounting points for the LED downlights.
KITCHEN AND DINETTE
In a layout like this, it is often the kitchen and dinette which are compromised to fit in the island bed and rear bathroom. That said, the kitchen set-up isn’t too bad. The four burner cooktop with grill/oven underneath and stainless steel sink take up just about all the benchtop space. With the microwave oven above the fridge, that leaves room for a couple of cupboards, two drawers and two overhead lockers.
Above the sink, the wall is a busy place with the flatscreen TV mounting and attendant power and antenna sockets, not to mention the 240V circuit breaker and HWS switches, radio and tank gauges on the cabinet above. Some manufacturers seem to put switches in odd places but the Pursuit has centralised, even if all the light switches by the entry door.
The dinette’s seat cushions offer the necessary comfort and there’s nothing wrong with the tri-fold table, cupboard underneath nor the drawers under the seats. Foot placement might require a bit of twinkle toes, though, and the 240V power point is a bit awkward to get at.
BEDROOM AND BATHROOM
Measuring 1.85x1.48m (6ft 1in x 4ft 10in), the island bed’s posture slat bed base can be lifted to get to the storage space underneath. There’s nothing wrong with the cupboards above, though, they offering all the usual storage expected of an island bedhead.
In the rear, the bathroom comes with the full kit, except a washing machine but. The fact that Olympic has managed to squeeze in a shower cubicle, cassette toilet and vanity cabinet with pedestal wash basin is not to be sneezed at.
There’s much to be said about the Olympic Pursuit Z3 caravan. Apart from anything else, it’s a single-axle van that can be towed with a vehicle that has a maximum towing capacity of 2000kg. Additionally, it comes with many of the contemporary comforts that we’ve come to expect and all at a very affordable price!
- Relatively light weight van
- Interior that didn’t feel too cramped
- LED lighting in appropriate places
- Good-sized tunnel boot
- Dinette seat drawers
I WOULD HAVE LIKED
- Less square cabinetry
- Different colour scheme
- Bed base easier to lift
The full test appeared in Caravan World #524, March 2014. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!