Passenger & boot space
How it copes with people and clutter
Up front in the Toyota Proace Matino, you get two massive door pockets, two gloveboxes, a cubby on the top of the dash and a handy shelf by the USB port that’s the perfect size for a smartphone. In other words, there are loads of places to put your camping bits and bobs.
Like the driver’s seat, the front passenger seat can be rotated 180 degrees to face the living area. It's not the slickest process and requires you to disengage the handbrake and put the seatback in an upright position (otherwise it catches on the dashboard). The front chairs in the Ford Transit Nugget and Mercedes Marco Polo are tricky to turn too, but at least they don’t have handbrakes that get in the way.
You get a second (optional) bed by raising the roof. Unlike in the California and Marco Polo, it's done manually not electronically, but in reality, it doesn’t take too much effort. As long as the side door is open, all you have to do is unfasten a couple of latches and give the roof a little push upwards – a pair of gas struts do the hard lifting.
To get into the top bed, you clip a ladder to the raised roof and clamber up. If you have limited mobility, you’ll want to stay on the ground floor.
The only real disappointment is the size of the beds. The lower bed is narrower than the units in the California, Marco Polo and Nugget, so it can be a little cosy when sharing with someone, while the top bed is quite short for those over six feet tall. We’d recommend seeing a Matino in the metal and trying out the beds for yourself before committing to a purchase. If you’re planning to use it as a two-person camper, you shouldn’t have a problem, but if want to use it for a four-person family holiday, it could be a squeeze.
When cooking, we’d advise raising the roof just to give yourself a little more head room. You get a full kitchen with twin gas hobs, a sink with fresh and waste water tanks, a fridge and an additional leisure battery for extended stays away (this can be charged using an external 230v electric socket or the 100W solar panel on the roof).