Spinifex NomadiX: Review
With all the kit you need to hit the rough stuff, the Spinifex NomadiX offroader is set up and ready to go.
Spinifex NomadiX highlights
- 6.7m/22ft offroad van
- Front bedroom, rear bathroom
- High level of appointment
- High electrical capacity
Spinifex Caravans builds large custom-designed caravans, but in recent times, has produced several standard designs, including the NomadiX 22ft. In this case, the 22ft (6.65m) length refers to the external body length of van, so it is not a particularly small van.
CONSTRUCTION AND OFFROAD ABILITY
In terms of construction, the NomadiX is built on a 150mm/6in hot-dipped railed chassis, with the usual box section design. Keeping the caravan on the road is Vehicle Components independent suspension with coil springs, polyurethane bushes, twin shock absorbers and trailing arms. The 17in wheels are fitted with 12in electric brakes. Up front, the 4.5t McHitch coupling creates the necessary solid connection to the tow vehicle and gives full articulation in tough offroad undulations.
Fully interlocking aluminium frames are used to keep the bodywork strong and, underneath the silver aluminium cladding, polyboard is used to insulate the van. The NomadiX has quite a boofy look about it but, at the same time, it’s very practical. There’s no shortage of external bin space and, given the load capacity of more than 700kg, you might be tempted to take too much gear.
There are the usual 240V and 12V circuits, but it’s the 12V system that does some heavy work. For a start, there are three 120Ah deep-cycles batteries in the front boot. They are charged up by a Victron 70 multi-stage charger, which is also a 1600W inverter unit. Additionally, there are three 140W Kyocera solar panels, which hints at long-term, self-contained living in remote places. Some items, such as the LED lights, are not huge energy consumers but the Vitrifrigo 12V compressor fridge certainly is and it relies very much on the batteries being up to voltage.
With a rear entry door, there are no surprises with the layout – bathroom to the rear, kitchen along the nearside wall, dinette and fridge on the opposite side and island bed up front. The first impressions are of a very light and bright interior and there are two reasons for that – the window space is very large and the dominant colour is white. It’s not a stark look, though, because the white is offset by the darker colours of the benchtops and upholstery.
The bathroom has a fairly conventional layout – cassette toilet against the offside wall, washing machine hidden in the offside corner, vanity along the rear and shower cubicle in the nearside corner. It’s all pretty standard, except that the latter has been designed at an angle to accommodate the aforementioned pantry. It might sound a bit tight in terms of space but it isn’t.
KITCHEN AND DINETTE
Even with a full stove, stainless steel sink/drainer and microwave oven mounted underneath the bench, there is still a generous amount of benchtop space and a good selection of drawers and overhead lockers. A feature of the metal edged, smooth running drawers was the easy-to-use handles – great for those with stiff fingers. On the opposite side of the van, the two-door, 240L fridge takes up all the space between the dinette and bathroom wall. Above the dinette, the wall space is taken up by assorted gauges, hot water and electrical controls. They are not very discretely hidden but are centrally located and easy to get at.
Think of all the features that a good café dinette should have – comfortable leather upholstery, tri-fold table, footrests, under-seat drawers, easy-to-get-at 240V powerpoint, large window and LED reading lights. Well, the NomadiX has them all. Being a remote living van, one might expect a 12V or, better still, 5V USB charger socket for the iPad but, sadly, not. It’s a very nice design, though.
The bedroom has nice simple lines and a reasonable amount of space to walk around. Other features are the island bed and usual layout of side wardrobes, bedside cabinets and overhead lockers. Going back to electrics briefly – one of the neat little ideas in this van are the 12V fans at the bedroom end of the overhead lockers. These are great for circulating a bit of cool air on hot nights but are far less energy intensive than the air-conditioner.
It’s not hard to see the appeal of the Spinifex NomadiX. It’s not an overly long van but the different areas – bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and dinette – are all of proportionate sizes. None are oversized at the expense of another. Clearly, the van has been built with remote touring in mind and, apart from having no grey water tank, it is fully self-contained for that purpose. In short, if you desire a trip to some of the more remote regions of Australia, then the only thing you need to add to this van is yourself and your gear.
- External bin space
- Well set-up electrics
- Well-appointed dinette
- Under-bench microwave oven
- 12V fuses with labels
I WOULD HAVE LIKED
- Apart from a few internal 12V/5V sockets, not much
The full test appeared in Caravan World #524, March 2014. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!