Vango AirBeam Drive-Away Awnings – Review of the New 2016 Range

This review is a basic overview of the new 2016 Vango AirBeam Drive-Away Awning Range highlighting new features and updates. We have only highlighted the AirBeam (aka AirAway) models that we consider to be the most compatible with VW Transporters.

Vango Airbeam logo

Overview of New 2016 AirBeam Models         

Idris II and Kela III

The ever popular Idris and market leading Kela continue as the base models in the new AirBeam range and for 2016 have been renamed the Idris II and Kela III respectively. As with last season, they both have identical dimensions and the floorplan sizes are also the same as last year, although the maximum head height is now 230cm slightly lower by 3cm across the whole range.

Vango AirBeam Idris II - Low

Vango AirBeam Idris II – Low

 

 

Vango AirBeam Kela III - Low

Vango AirBeam Kela III – Low

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As with the first Idris, the Idris II is based on the Kela III but comes in a lighter fabric with a ‘linked-in’ (detachable) groundsheet, lighter/smaller pack size and a price tag £100 less than the Kela III. The Idris II now has connection tabs for an inner tent sleeping compartment if required. Both models are available in the new LOW connection height which we’ll discuss in more detail below.

Kela III XL and Kela III Deluxe 310

Vango have consolidated the 2016 AirBeam range around their bestselling awning by using the Kela as the base model (everybody recognises and knows the Kela now) and adding the Kela III XL and Kela III Deluxe 310.  Although this may seem slightly confusing at first, we’ll explain…

Vango AirBeam Kela III XL – Standard

Vango AirBeam Kela III XL – Standard

 

The Kela III XL is the extra-large version (the clues in the name) and has an additional main air-beam with bracer beam that offers extra living area. The Kela III XL is available in STANDARD height connection only.  The Kela III XL has basically superceded the Sapera model from previous seasons and has the same floor dimensions. If you own an earlier model Sapera, the Kela XL footprint and carpet will fit perfectly or if you upgrade to the new Kela XL you could use your existing footprint and carpet.

 

Vango AirBeam Kela III Deluxe 310 - Low

Vango AirBeam Kela III Deluxe 310 – Low

 

 

The Kela III Deluxe 310 comes with zip off front sun canopy and a porch over the side door, and this model has superceded last season’s Attar awning.  The Kela III Deluxe 310 has a slightly shorter connection width than last year’s Attar 380 which means it will now fit a SWB VW T4, T5 and T6 as well as LWB Transporters. The Kela III Deluxe 310 is available in LOW and STANDARD connection heights. We can still order in (with 2 or 3 days notice) the Deluxe 380 for any customers that prefer an extra wide awning. The Kela III Deluxe 380 is available in STANDARD height only.

 

Galli

The Galli AirBeam Awning is a completely new design from Vango and the flagship model of the 2016 range – we like it a lot! It’s Vango’s first drive-away awning design to run perpendicular to the vehicle which means that the front of the awning faces the same way as the front your uber-cool VeeDub… obviously this would be the reverse on LHD’s offering easy access to the rear tailgate/barn doors.

Vango AirBeam Galli

Vango AirBeam Galli

 

 

Vango AirBeam Galli - dimensions

Vango AirBeam Galli – dimensions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the front of the Galli is the main entrance door with integrated porch, perfect for sitting out and watching everybody run for cover in a summer shower and an instant shelter while you unzip the door if you return in wet weather.

The Galli is also the first drive-away awning from Vango that can accommodate two double sleeping compartments with the layout still offering easy access to the connection tunnel and a decent amount of living area.

Call into our Twickenham showroom to see a Vango Galli on display and either connected to our 79’ Bay or T5.

New AirBeam Awning Updates

New LOW Height Connection Option

Vango have been a bit slow to offer the option of a lower connection height awning tunnel but better late than never. This hasn’t really put off VW owners too much as AirBeam awnings have been embraced by the scene since they were first introduced. It is possible to get a Standard connection tunnel nice and taught on a Transporter, it just takes a bit of practice.

Although Vango’s new LOW height connection is an improvement when it comes to tightening the adjustment straps at the top of the connection tunnel, we do think it’s more important to set-out the awning properly in the first place. Watch this blog page for tips on setting up an AirBeam drive-away awning – coming soon

New Fabrics

Vango have drawn on their 50 years of tent manufacturing experience and created new Sentinel high quality fabrics for their 2016 AirBeam awnings.  The Idris II uses Sentinel Active 70 in its construction which is a 70 denier polyester combining strength to weight to provide a compact pack size.

All other awnings in the AirBeam range are now manufactured using Sentinel Pro 420 – an incredibly strong 420 denier double rip-stop fabric that will withstand all weathers. This high-density base fabric combined with high tech coatings ensure AirBeam awnings are durable, fully waterproof and will have a long life.

New Colours                                                                                  

The Idris II now comes in a cool Sky Blue colour with Black detailing with the rest of the collection finished in a much lighter Cloud Grey/Black colourway.

New Universal Sleeping Compartment

Bedroom inner tents aren’t included as standard with the 2016 range and they are now an optional extra. We can understand why Vango have done this as in past years many of our customers have bought AirBeam awnings for just living/storage space and the bedroom was surplus to requirements. The new universal double bedroom fits all 2016 models and is reversible.

AirSpeed Valve System

Vango have improved their AirSpeed Valve System by tweeking the pump adaptor slightly to make inflation 30% more efficient… which equates to 30% less effort or same effort and 30% faster inflation… yes, even faster!  We do have a few of these new adaptors to give away to any of our 2015 AirBeam customers who call in our shop.

TBS II                                                                                     

All 2016 AirBeam’s still have Vango’s patented Tension Band System (TBS) which is what makes them the most stable drive-away awning on the market.

Just email your address to info@funkyleisure.co.uk with the title AirBeam for a FREE 2016 Vango AirBeam Awning brochure and pricelist.

The FL Team

For the new range go to our latest review for all current prices and bundle deals visit the Vango AirBeam Awning section of FL’s shop.

 

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11. February 2016 by funkyleisure
Categories: VW Campervan Road Trips | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 comments

Comments (4)

  1. How does the airbeam Galli attac to my VW T5 which has a pop up roof? Happy.

    • Hi John

      The easiest way to connect to a VW T5 with an elevating roof is to use the supplied webbing straps that clip into the top corners of the connecting tunnel. The straps pass over the roof around the front and rear of the pop up roof and are pegged down on the opposite side of the van.

      We have many customers who use this method to connect Vango AirBeam awnings to their vans. However, if you wanted a neater connection you would have to fit an awning rail like a Reimo Multi-Rail which runs just above the door line or if there’s enough space under your pop top you can fit a C-channel type rail. Both options would also need a 6mm to 6mm Drive-Away Kit to attach an awning.

  2. Hi
    I have a 2008 SWB High Roof Vivaro.
    Which of your awnings will fit?

    • Hi

      To fit any sort of awning to any make of high roof vehicle and get a good weatherproof connection ideally you will need an awning rail of some sort to attach it to.

      If Vauxhall don’t make an awning rail specifically for the Vivaro, we would suggest looking at the Reimo Multi-Rail or a C-channel type rail. Once you have a rail fitted (ideally at least 2.5m long – just above the sliding side door) measure the height and choose which awning connection tunnel height will fit… Low: 180cm to 210cm or Standard: 205cm to 235cm.

      Alternatively, you could purchase a ‘Tall’ connection height awning, position the connection tunnel webbing straps over the roof and peg them down on the opposite side of your van. Some van owners are happy to use this basic connection method indefinitely.

      We always carry stock of ‘Low’ models but if you do decide to go for the ‘Standard’ or ‘Tall’ version let us know as we offer good pre-order discounts and can usually get them delivered within a 2-3 days.

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