Will A 2016 Auto-Sleeper Nuevo Cope At -12 Temperatures In The Alps?
”We asked ourselves this question as we vaguely considered going skiing in February half term and being relative newbies to motor homing, having upgraded in 2016 from a tent to a new “all singing and dancing” Auto-Sleeper Nuevo.
Being a tad adventurous we’d already taken the newly delivered Nuevo (Keith) on road trips in the spring and summers to: Netherlands, Spain, Germany, Austria, Italy and back over the GrossGlokner pass- not to be undertaken by the faint hearted, we now know why the Sat Nav kept telling us to turn around!
It therefore begged the question: Is the Winter Pack cracked up to cope in February in the Alps? The answer is a resounding yes! Once we had taken the plunge we took expert advice from Ask Jack at Practical Motorhome and Auto-Sleepers’ themselves who between them noted to lag the external water pipes and underslung water tanks even though the latter already had tank blankets, take a snow shovel, snow chains, external thermal cab covers, bucket and to cover fridge vents. Then off we went. A few second thoughts arose having seen the forecast of lows of -12 with daytime highs of -4 but by then it was time to put Keith to the test.
The drive down was easy, the cab heaters kept the three of us nice and warm en-route and we simply turned the heating onto gas whenever we stopped and again when we overnighted off grid. Upon arrival at Camping L’Escale we plugged into 10A mains and then turned the heating onto electric. Keith’s grade 3 insulation enabled the Nuevo to retain heat exceedingly well just using the mains, as we didn’t have to switch to mixed gas/electric. The thermostat was set at 18/19 during the day and 13 overnight. We did encounter overnight lows as forecast of down to -12 and Keith delivered the heat as requested and none of us noticed how cold it was outside, until we opened the door to go skiing.
Evidently nobody filled their water tanks and indeed there were no facilities on the site to connect a hose, possibly erring on the side of caution to prevent frost damage in such extreme temperatures. Our regime was to fill a few milk containers with water and keep them in Keith, then to drain grey waste straight into our collapsible bucket, having kept the external drain tap open as suggested by Ask Jack. The loo and its waste cartridge performed as normal, as both are internally housed within the vehicle.
The Nuevo is a fabulous vehicle for a ski holiday. The bathroom proved an excellent drying room for all our ski clothing and helmets, using a combination of the pull-out clothes airer and a couple of extra adhesive hooks. The site had a ski locker room in addition to a heated boot room, enabling us to have nice heated boots every morning too. We ended up having more space to put our equipment on at the campsite than in any of the ski hotels/apartment we’ve stayed at.
All in all the Nuevo performed very well and to the construction envelope, it exceeded our expectations and gave us an invaluable ski holiday with wonderful memories in our own version of Claridge’s, now ready on the drive for our next adventure, wherever that may take us…”
Words By Julie Jones, February 2018.