Avida's Escape Camper Is an Australian Machine Ready To Survive Inhospitable Destinations

In the search for camper vans that can blow away the competition, I've decided to head back to the land down under (Australia) as they're known for building machines capable of withstanding the harshest landscapes and terrains around.
Escape Camper Van 12 photos
Photo: Avida RV / YouTube Screenshot
Escape BathroomEscape Rear DoorsEscape InteriorEscape Camper Van ShowerEscape Rear LoungeEscape GalleyEscape Swivel Cab SeatingEscape GalleyEscape Camper VanEscape Camper VanEscape Interior
Folks, today we'll be taking a little mental journey through a mobile habitat dubbed the Escape. The name alone should tell you all you need to know about this machine and what sort of lifestyle it offers, one of absolute freedom.

For a solid understanding of what you can expect from this habitat, we can look at the hearts and minds responsible for the design. This time around, Avida RV is the crew responsible for this off-grid magic. If you've never heard of them, all you need to know is that they're one of "Australia's original success stories" and have been around since 1965. With this much industry knowledge poured into each unit that leaves their lot, you can expect the Escape to be one heck of a machine.

Oh, and as a little side note, back in 1978, Avida, then dubbed Freeway Camper Company, changed its name to, wait for it, Winnebago Industries, in the process, giving birth to the "Original Australian Winnebago." Yet, according to Avida's website, these Winnebago RVs weren't manufactured, designed, or even associated with the famed American brand; it wasn't until 2013 that the Avida name was finally chosen to describe this brand.

Escape Interior
Photo: Avida RV
Diving right in, the Escape is currently available for around $137,000 Australian, which is roughly $94,000 American (at current exchange rates). How is a camper van that includes everything you may need off-grid possibly being sold for under $100K? That's what we're about to find out.

One part of why the Escape comes in with a relatively affordable asking price compared to other camper vans on the market is the use of a Fiat Ducato base vehicle with a 2.3-liter diesel engine with 160 HP and 400 Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque. It's all about the torque with these machines as you want to ensure you can climb the mountain roads that your journey may throw at you and do so while loaded to the brim with gear and cargo.

Now for the juicy stuff. As you may have noticed by now, quite a few of the camper vans we see on the market seem to be lacking something. Sometimes it's a toilet, sometimes it's a shower. Other times, it could be the galley. All that brings me to my next point.

Even though this camper van uses the same base vehicle as many others, Avida still managed to include sleeping space for up to four adults, a full indoor/outdoor galley, and even a complete bathroom, ready with a shower, toilet, sink, and vanity. Did I mention countless storage options tattered all over the habitat?

Escape Interior
Photo: Avida RV / YouTube Screenshot
How's all this achieved? With over 50 years of industry experience, that's how. Part of the magic lies in the presence of two lounges, one at the front half of the Escape, making use of the driver and passenger swivel seats, and another at the opposite end, sitting behind the galley and bathroom.

The forward lounge is mainly used for day-to-day settings, but at night, the rear lounge unlocks its secrets, and at the press of a button, a drop-down double bed is lowered into view, perfect for another two people.

As for the rest of the unit, I invite you to explore the countless features and systems until the cows come home. Word of advice, take the time to really get to know your Escape. But, be warned, once you've done so, you may find yourself calling a particular Australian RV manufacturer (Avida) and trying to get one shipped to your current location.

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About the author: Cristian Curmei
Cristian Curmei profile photo

A bit of a nomad at heart (being born in Europe and raised in several places in the USA), Cristian is enamored with travel trailers, campers and bikes. He also tests and writes about urban means of transportation like scooters, mopeds and e-bikes (when he's not busy hosting our video stories and guides).
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