Swift Kontiki 675 – review

Swift Kontiki 675
Our Swift Kontiki 675 travelling over the Fern Pass towards Italy.

The Swift Kontiki 675 is a six berth motorhome from UK manufacturer “The Swift Group”. A total re-design for the 2019 season, the new Kontiki range features a new body length at a whisker over nine metres. Interior headroom benefits from an increase too. In fact, floor to ceiling is around seven feet. Consequently, this creates a feeling of space and a bright and airy layout. New features such as under floor heating to the lounge area, taller overhead lockers and Corian worktops in the kitchen establish the quality of this motorhome.

Of course, firm favourites such as the Alde 3020 boiler with heat exchanger offering “free” habitation heat from the engine whilst driving, fresh & grey tanks with frost protection and soft close cabinets are all present. The Hartal habitation door is much wider than on any other camper. For that reason, entry and exit is easy – even for Sydney, our ageing Weimaraner.

Swift Kontiki 675 – the layout

Swift Kontiki 675
The Swift Kontiki 675 daytime floorplan.

From the nearside entrance habitation door, to the left we have a side facing bench seat with further “L-shape” seating opposite. An adjustable table can easily accommodate six hungry diners! Both cab seats swivel to create a cosy lounge. A centre galley, separate shower cubicle, toilet and wash basin adjacent and then the key feature, the twin rear single beds atop a huge garage. Noteworthy of a mention, the table is solid and secure, both when in use and also when “on the run”. As a result, there is no travelling noise from this travelling companion!

180 horses take to the road

Our motorhome takes power from the Fiat 2.3 litre MultiJet in 180 bhp form. In our Swift Kontiki 675, this is an upgrade over the standard spec’ of 150 bhp. This 180 bhp output copes well with most driving requirements. Our present run to Italy features motorway, cross country, inter urban and mountain pass routes. The six speed manual gearbox helps to keep the fuel economy in check. Even with this brand new ‘van, we achieved 28 mpg over a 1500 mile journey to Rome via three mountains passes including the awful road to the duty free town of Samnaun. Yes, you did read this correctly. This is a brand new van and this is our first trip away…..a round trip of around 3000 miles!

Motorhome mpg
Motorhome miles per gallon
Swift Koniki miles per gallon
2.3 lite Fiat Ducato mpg

Our Fiat fuel computer suggests 27.6 mpg over 2984 miles for “distance B.” Our calculations put this figure closer to 28 mpg. Meanwhile, the 1033 mile journey (Distance A) from Lake Garda to West Yorkshire returns 28.5 mpg per the computer. This figure is very close to our calculations. We calculate our fuel using simple maths – number of miles divided by gallons added. Over one fill there is a lot of scope for experimental error – for example – dd you fill the tank or brim it? Averaging the figure over numerous refills gives a more reliable result.

Somewhat off topic, Samnaun is a Swiss duty free enclave close to the Austrian and Italian borders. Why not have a read of one of our previous visits to Samnaun, with details of the low prices for diesel and other goodies?

The Fiat cab features electric windows and mirrors, radio with CD player (three cheers), USB connections, 12v socket and swivel seats. The radio performs well without any loss of signal! Cab air conditioning is standard equipment as is the new “Swift Vison” rear and side view camera/monitor.  The camera is operational when driving forward giving a clear view to the rear, with a second, more specific view when reversing. The camera can be switched off or left on when driving forwards. Furthermore, when indicating to the left or right, the new “Swift Vision” gives the driver a clear view into what is potentially a blind spot. Imagery is very clear indeed and is a credit to Sargent Electrics.

Lounging in Swift Kontiki 675 style

The front lounge is formed of a side seat sofa, L shape seating and of course, twin captain’s seats – both of which are on a swivel base. Underfloor heating provides gentle warmth to the feet! The semi-permanent table can be raised and lowered. This table when in the low position, forms part of an additional double bed if required. Three tall overhead lockers offer storage for even the hard to store items such as cereal boxes. Power sockets are a plenty – 3 x 230v, 1 x 12v plus USB connections. High level lighting is dimmable as are the four reading/spotlights. There are three low level lights too.

A-la carte & a-la Kontiki!

Swift Kontiki 675
Central galley features dual fuel stove with extractor above, fridge freezer and microwave.

The L-shape kitchen features a Dometic CU600 cooker with gas oven, gas grill, three gas burners and an electric boiling ring. The stove features a tight fitting lid. This ensures a rattle free journey! Dometic also provide the fridge in the form of the new “10” series with a separate door to the freezer compartment Speaking of doors, these can open from the left or right. No modification is needed to open the doors in this manner – this is simply a very clever design! The fridge freezer has a huge 190 litre capacity. It goes without saying that the fridge operates on gas, mains electric or 12v DC. Noteworthy of a mention, the fridge freezer is a little thirsty on power though at 230v, but the fridge is COLD, very cold, even in the hot Italian conditions.

Regular readers will of course note the kitchen roll holder. This is not just any kitchen roll holder, it is the “magic” kitchen roll holder from “Simple Human”. This clever device prevents kitchen rolls from unrolling themselves whilst travelling – click the Amazon link above to order one – they are superb. MV’s own review is available here.

Dometic RMD fridge freezer
A microwave oven sits atop a large capacity, twin door fridge freezer.

Mobile chefs will also enjoy the microwave oven which sits atop the fridge freezer. Above the microwave, a dedicated locker for a SKY box or similar with pre routed cables to the TV locations. To the right of the fridge freezer, a tall robe with TV provision on top. We have done a bit of DIY and fitted extra shelves in the cupboard as this offers us more flexibility in terms of storage capabilities.

Three further overhead lockers – complete with crockery and mug store – complete the scene for the chef on wheels. The solar panel regulator is also in the overhead cupboard. A cutlery drawer is contained within the under counter cupboard. The cooking area is well lit with a LED strip light, twin down lighters and two further spot lights built into the Dometic extractor unit. Dometic have created something clever here. The digital display clock within the extractor unit is powered by 12v, so the clock does not need resetting when travelling etc. There are two mini heki rooflights. We have however replaced one with a Truma Aventa air conditioning unit.

Swift Kontiki 675 – splash time

Swift Kontiki 675
A domestic style door leads to the bathroom and sleeping quarters.

Moving towards the rear, the Kontiki offers a separate shower with integral lighting. Opposite, the sink and toilet, warmed with an Alde radiator. A domestic style door forms a solid partition between the living area and bathing area of this high end ‘van. The toilet/washroom has plentiful lighting, low and high level cupboards and shelving. Overhead, a mini heki for ventilation. There’s also a large single-door wardrobe offering hanging space for those longer items of clothing.

Swift Kontiki 675 washroom
The separate shower cubicle features lighting and an Eco-Camel shower head.

Good night sweetheart, goodnight Swift Kontiki 675

A star feature of this nine metre motorhome is the sleeping quarters. Twin single beds atop a huge garage locker easily allow those (like us) who are in excess of six feet to sleep in comfort. A centre infill may be used to make the beds into what can only be described as a super-king.

Two under-bed wardrobes offer LED-lit hanging space, whilst there is further storage atop these ‘robes, accessed when lifting the base of the bed. The lower step to the sleeping quarters features a top-opener offering storage for shoes or similar. Large heki sun roof, the new “skyview” rear window, LED lighting, four spot lights and TV provision complete the spec’ to the sleeping quarters.

At the front, an A-class style pull down bed provides a comfortable “double”. An opening roof vent provides ventilation. Noteworthy of a mention – the ambient lighting – this can be set to a relaxing blue or a warm red/orange. Finally, the lounge can be made into a further double if required or maybe used as two short singles – perfect for the children or grand children.

External features and storage

Outside, the Swift Kontiki 675 offers good storage provision. A huge garage at the rear is accessed from both sides, whilst an external panier locker and side locker offer further storage, typically for outdoor items such as levelling ramps and similar. A side locker adds to the external storage –  we love the shelf within this locker – it’s the small details that make all the difference. We store dirty items such as the hook up lead and toilet fluid on the bottom shelf, with the top shelf reserved for fresh water filling gear, hose connections and so on. Finally, a lift up hatch gives access to the under floor storage area. No, you are not seeing things – there is a suitcase there. Why? In case one of us has to fly home in an emergency etc! Think about it…

There is one other external feature – an awning-style light on the offside. This is very useful when pottering around the driver’s side of the ‘van. Coincidentally, the three external lockers are at this side.

Swift Kontiki 675 garage
Swift Kontiki 675
Swift Kontiki 675
Swift Kontiki 675

The Kontiki has an external 12 volt socket to allow connection of a pump to aid filling the fresh water tank. We use a 40 litre water hog for this purpose – the same sort of thing caravanners use.

The gas locker will house 2 x 13kg Calor cylinders, although we are using 1 x 13kg Calor and 1 x 10kg “Safefill” at present. For those not in the know, it is possibly to refill the Safefill cylinder at a fuel fourcourt or other LPG retailer. Click here for our review of the Safefill cylinder.

Exterior windows are from the Dometic family and cleverly feature a “self holding” position when open. Open the window and that’s it – no more reaching out to turn the locking mechanism.

Swift Kontiki 675 – in summary

This is a large motorhome with a large specification list. Six wheels keep this van firmly on the road with no buffeting even when overtaking lorries. The Swift Comand app allows the user to control functions such as lighting and heating remotely.

Kontiki owners may wish to read our review of our 2015 679 Black Edition – click here.

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