The GoRV team caught up with BRS Campers CEO Ben Souter and his family after they had spent a couple of weeks touring in their Pursuit Carbon 2023/24 model camper. It was a sunny day in Seymour, Vic, and the family were camped en route to their home base just outside of Newcastle.
Ben started manufacturing the Pursuit range in 2014. As a carpenter, and coming out of the caravan building business, Ben wanted to create a product that would handle the serious offroad touring he loved.
His dream was to build his campers from top to bottom inside one factory. That dream is now a reality. From the chassis up, these campers are built in-house, except for items such as fridges, suspension components and electrical equipments, which are bought in. And I have to admit it’s built extremely well.
BRS builds two models, the Sherpa and the Pursuit, with each having model-specific variations. The Pursuit range has a base model, the mid-range Platinum and the top-of-the-line Carbon.
All Pursuits are built to order. Ben likes to offer a complete package for a set price, then build each van to spec to suit the buyer’s budget. Our BRS Campers Pursuit Carbon was a ‘burger with the lot’ and came in at $141,000 tow-away. The price is up there, but it’s also one of the most spec’d out campers I’ve seen.
BRS CAMPERS: CHASSIS AND BODY
The Pursuit is built in three sections: the lid or top half of the body, the main body and the chassis.
The chassis is made by BRS Campers from 150x50x3mm galvanised steel. The Carbon features Cruisemaster airbag suspension system with aluminium air tank. This system can be controlled manually or via the Empirbus system by Garmin, with a 7in wireless tablet. A Deutsche Hydrapro disc brake and booster system and Maxxis 295/70R18 tyres on alloy rims are included too.
The top half of the BRS Campers Pursuit Carbon is composite fibreglass over 25mm high-density, closed-cell structural foam. Together with the marine-grade carpet on the inside, this camper offers great insulation and durability.
A combo of marine grade alloy and standard alloy is used in the main section of the body. This builds in toughness and the ability to handle all weather conditions, water crossings and any bush bashing it’s likely to be subjected to.
There is a front boot housing a 9kg gas cylinder in a storage space on either side of the van, which are cleverly hidden behind heavy-duty PVC screens. There’s good storage space in the middle of this boot space too. The other big storage space is under the bed on the offside of the van. It will easily handle the portable toilet, chairs and other bulky items.
The 12V system is comprised of twin 200Ah lithium batteries, twin 190W solar panels, an ePRO Combi inverter/charger and an Enerdrive DC2DC+ charger. It’s an impressive off-grid system that will run everything in the van as well as other 12V and 240V accessories.
The camper has 200L worth of fresh water storage and an 85L grey water tank. Water is pumped through a high-flow water filter from a FloJet water pump. This water system is cleverly interconnected throughout.
On the nearside of the van is a slide-out kitchen with a timber prep bench, drawers and a sink with hot and cold water. There is also a Sizzler barbecue and a two-burner gas cooktop. Located in the body next to the kitchen is a handy 80L upright Isotherm fridge/freezer. This is a good-sized fridge with a small freezer for icy poles and the like. There are extra fridges inside the van providing significant versatility for separate fridge and freezer spaces.
On the back are jerry can holders, wood holders and a cleverly designed spare wheel holder, which allows easy access to the spare wheel without compromising the departure angle too much. There’s also a Thule V16 electric bike lift on the back that keeps the bikes well off the ground.
There is so much more to talk about with this Pursuit: a quick awning, a draft skirt, a big awning, air-con, heating… the list goes on. This is seriously one of the most spec’d up hybrids I have looked at and I am only giving you the half of it!
ON THE INSIDE
The inside of the BRS Campers Pursuit Carbon is pretty flash, I have to say. It’s clever in the design department as well. A full-width kitchen runs across the back of the unit while on the left of the entry is a cafe-style dinette comprised of two leather seats, one on each side of the camper, and a space to get up onto the queen-size bed.
There so much to see on the inside. Keeping it brief, the two seats have 30L slide-out Isotherm fridge/freezer drawers under them. Under the bed and in the gap between the seats is a slide-out dining table and, under that, are two storage lockers. One hides the lithium batteries neatly while the other is ideal for clothing. Some clever engineering sees a T-piece section fitting neatly between the seats to create a bed for a kid or a furry travelling companion.
Either side of the bed are storage lockers while 240V and 12V points, as well a storage space, are everywhere around the walls. There is a Sirocco fan above the window on each wall and the best part of the whole bed area is the huge overhead Eurovision Series 2 window that lets in lots of light and air.
Across the front, as mentioned, is a kitchen which, for preparing meals during inclement weather or augmenting the external kitchen, is fabulous. It even contains a 1000W microwave.
To the right of the modern benchtop is a kitchen sink with flick mixer while on the opposite end is a Thetford induction cooktop catering for two pots. Other features in the overhead systems include hanging hooks and racks for spices and other food items, while a Sphere smart TV sits in the middle of the wall.
Opposite the main door is a canvas hatch/doorway and what a piece of work is hidden behind it! Open the solid door and flick the lid to allow air flow through the screen. Open the canvas door to expose a slide-out ensuite.
Once out and locked into place, this space has a canvas wall that allows people to use the shower or portable toilet in privacy, all off the ground. There is enough length in the retractable shower head that it can also be used while standing on the ground.
I walked away from this review impressed by the build quality and the spec level of the BRS Campers Pursuit Carbon – it’s pretty amazing, really. I didn’t get to tow this unit, which was a bummer; however, from watching it on the road and knowing how good the suspension is, I reckon it will go pretty much anywhere it can be towed without an issue.
FIT AND FINISH
HITS & MISSES
BRS CAMPERS PURSUIT CARBON SPECS
Overall length: 6m
External width: 2.1m
External body length: 4.9m
Travel height: 2.78m
Internal height in walkway: 1.86m
Unladen ball weight: 140kg to 165kg
Group axle capacity: 2600kg
Construction: Top half: Fibreglass sandwich panel with 25mm high-density, closed-cell foam; lower half: marine and standard alloy
Chassis: 150x50x3mm hot-dipped-galvanised
Suspension: Cruisemaster airbag
Brakes: Deutsche Hydrapro disc brakes with booster system
Wheels: 16in alloy
Fresh water: 200L
Grey water: 1x85L
Kitchen: Slide-out with sink and Sizzler barbecue
Awning: BRS quick awning; full awning; draft skirt
Battery: 2x200Ah lithium with ePRO Combi inverter/charger and DC2DC+ charger
Sway control: No
Cooking: Two-burner induction cooktop
Refrigeration: 2x30L Isotherm fridge drawers under the seats;
80L external Isotherm fridge/freezer
Shower: Hand-held shower in external ensuite
Toilet: Thetford Quebec 165 portable toilet
Washing machine: No
Lighting: 12V LED
Hot water: Suburban gas-electric
Heating: Truma VarioHeat
Air-conditioner: Truma Saphir ducted
TV: 24in smart
This review van included nearly every option available and is a custom build. To lower the price, buyers can remove certain features.
Base model starts from $136,990 (ex-NSW)