In my search for a new chariot, I have been dreaming of VW camper vans. Eurovans, Weekenders, and Vanagons, OH MY!
The availability of these treasures is pretty low, but you can drool over some polished chrome and new paint jobs at homage sites on the internet.
But now, my attention is turning to more modern, possibly more accessible vehicles and the attempts of a few makers to craft them into the camper vans of their own design.
Ford Transit Connect
The Ford Transit Connect is an oh-so-cute, small-format, configurable van.
You have probably seen them around town, wrapped in some very attention-getting advertising skin. They are marketed as van solutions for small businesses, individuals, and families needing a little extra equipment space.
In my worldwide wanderings for camper van heaven, I found evidence of van conversions including Ford Transit Connect van conversions. You would be surprised at what can fit on and in a Ford Transit Connect.
The Pacific Ford dealer on Cherry Ave had a few Ford Transit Connects on the lot and we poured over the 'seats-two-with-cargo' configuration.
The cargo space comes in at 6 feet long, 4 feet wide (at the narrowest point) and 4 feet, 4 inches tall. It passed my personal fit test, and that of my 5 foot 5 inch companion. A 6 foot tall person might find quarters a bit closer.
The side rear doors slide back for access and the back doors can fold against the van for convenience.
According to the salesman, the folks who buy it as their personal vehicle love it for it's space and can just throw in their gear and drive.
Here, you can find a Southern California maker selling DIY Ford Transit Connect conversion kits. Not handy? Don't worry, he'll install them for free!
So, is anyone up to making a camper van?
Ford Transit vs Ford Transit Connect
If you do your own research on Ford Transit Connect camper van conversions, you will most likely find a lot of material on Ford Transit conversions. This is because the Ford Transit Connect was new to the U.S. in 2009, but has been sold in Europe for much longer.
You may also find references to the Ford Transit. It is important to know that the Ford Transit is a full size van as opposed to the Ford Transit Connect which is a more personal-sized vehicle. The Ford Transit is also not sold in the US.
I was informed by the Ford salesperson that if there are Ford Transits in the U.S., they must have been imported.
So, if you happen upon this British entrepreneur selling do-it-yourself plans for Ford Transit campervan conversions, know that you won't be able to use them unless you want to import the Ford Transit yourself.
There were a few folks who apparently were very interested in seeing what the difference was between the Ford Transit and the Ford Transit Connect.
On a totally unrelated note, you may want to try out one of these London taxis turned into camper vans.
Next up: But Wait, There's More! Camper Vans of Today!
For this post, I am seeking out vehicles by size and shape, and focusing on those interesting to me. If you plan on purchasing a vehicle, you'll want to do your research about the other aspects of vehicle ownership.