Picking up the T@B!, Small History of the TAB Caravan

A Smallish History of T@B Caravans.  T@B Mexico Caravan
Why a smallish history?  Well because, as the pictures show, the TAB Caravan is what you might call dinky.

However its iconic image is far from small. That my friends, is a record breaker!

Cult status

Already a caravanning icon, the Lego model of the TAB unveiled at the 2016 NEC Caravan Camping & Motorhome show cemented its cult status. The model used 215,158 Lego® bricks in its creation. Over 1000 hours left no detail ignored with the inside being as detailed as the outside.

T@B Caravan at NEC Caravan Camping & Motorhome ShowT@B Caravan at NEC Caravan Camping & Motorhome Show

Drop the TAB

Although TAB is the official name of this caravan, its funky nickname T@B matches its personality.
The ‘Mini’ of the caravan world the T@B has revolutionised caravan design for the small family and small car.

Launched in 2004 by Knaus Tabbert the T@B is still built by them near Frankfurt in Germany. As you’d expect from German manufacturing and engineering (think BMW, Audi and Siemens) the standard is high. T@B boasts quality fittings inside and out, and has a seamless aluminium insulated shell – essential to keep it watertight. Vorsprung durch technic indeed!

Its modest size keeps it lightweight, which in turn means it’s easy to manoeuvre and handle. The classic teardrop shape produces amazing aerodynamics when on the road.

Just how Lilliputian is the T@B?

T@B Off Road Caravan

The T@B Off Road Caravan

Currently there are two models, the 320RS and the L400TD, with 4 designs, including Basic, Mexican Sunset, Metropolis and Off-road (yes, we did just say offroad!).

The 320RS is 518cm long and 199xm wide. The L400TD is fractionally bigger at 596cm long and 224 wide.

The maximum weight is 1000KG (that’s the Off-Road model), classing it as one of the lightest tourers on the market.

Off-roading with a T@B sounds a little wild! But this model boasts a 1000kg chassis as standard, external rear mounted spare wheel, protective styling around outer edges and chunkier alloy wheels.

 

Interior of 320RS T@B Caravan

Interior of 320RS

Inside they are well designed.

The 320RS is the more basic of the two, with a dinette that converts into a double bed and a kitchen boasting a double burner hob and fridge.

The more spacious L400TD is sold as a three berth, which may be super cosy. It has a fixed double bed (1.95m x 1.34m), a kitchen with an 86L fridge, and a separate dining area that converts into a single bed along with a full shower/washroom.

As with most continental caravans and campervans, there’s no oven or grill, hob cooking or al-fresco is the way forward.

Is it too diminutive?

Isabella T@B Awning

Isabella T@B Awning

It IS small – there’s no pretending otherwise. But an awning will increase your available space.

Isabella do awnings and we mention them because they’re renowned for their excellent awnings and outdoor equipment. They don’t come cheap – about £1,600 worth of not cheap – but they’re widely available.

A little goes a long way?

Ok, that’s the last little jab! Brand new T@B caravans range from £10,000 for the 320RS to £17000 for the L400TD. A second hand 2015 T@B 320RS (including the Isabella Awning) recently sold for approximately £10,250.

Where to T@B into?

If you like what you’ve seen here – thank you – let us know at the usual places here: Facebook, Twitter – and want to find out more, head over to the T@B Owners Club and their Facebook Page.

If you’re thinking ‘this is the caravan for me’, there are 5 main dealers:
• Barnsdale Leisure in Pontefract
• Southdown’s Motorhome Centre, Hampshire
• Springbank Leisure, Shropshire
• Cumbria based Adventure Leisure Vehicles
• Blackmore Vale Leisure in Dorset

If you already own a T@B, do tell us about it. And if you go and pick up the T@B please send us your pics! We’d love to see them.

Happy Caravanning.

Funky T@B wooden caravanT@B Caravan in rainbowCocktail Bar T@B

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