Six months ago we would have described ourselves as died-in-the-wool VW aircooled enthusiasts, having owned nine air-cooled 60's and 70's VW campervans over the last ten years. The thought of not having an air-cooled bus in the family was simply not an option! We've had splits, bays, panel vans, the lot, and loved them all.
However, our last bus, a 1971 VW Westfalia Tin-top was unfortunately what can only be described as an 'unlucky bus', with endless (often expensive) niggles and hitches finally culminating in a blown up engine and an electrical fire which nearly finished us all off! Don't get me wrong, I love all things Type 2, but when you have to rely on them as a daily driver and weekend camper, sometimes charm and character just aren't enough … so regrettably the T2 Westy was put up for sale. The hunt for a new campervan was on!
We'd always secretly admired T4's, but had been put off by the sometimes staid appearance of some camper versions, and try as we did just couldn't grasp the concept of a T4 being cool or funky enough to park itself on our drive, never mind roll up at a VW show in one!
However, T4's are becoming more and more popular, with many of the big VW magazines featuring them regularly, and many more (both funky and cool!) examples appearing at VW shows around the country, so we began to get interested, seriously! The lure of comfort, practicality, safety, reliability and 'coolness' was becoming too strong to ignore, so after researching the internet and various VW magazines, we came across the VW Campersales website.
We spotted a 2001 Westfalia California Generation on Rob's website, which has to be said did fit a little bit into the 'staid' category (sorry Rob!) but we could see the potential as a base vehicle for us to add our personal touches to, and most importantly it had the camper conversion specification we wanted, with one owner from new and a full VW service history.
So off we all went to VW Campersales to have a look for ourselves, and knew straight away it was 'the one'. It looked even better in the flesh and Rob couldn't have been more relaxed and friendly, whilst at the same time clearly knowing his stuff. Car salesmen are amongst my top five most avoidable people, but Rob couldn't have been more helpful and patient with our endless questions, not to mention happily tolerating two four year olds charging about the place!
So a deposit was duly placed and we arranged to collect our new member of the family in a few weeks time. Once home, we started studying all the VW magazines for ideas and inspiration, and decided that we'd like the van lowered slightly, with a new set of alloys and low profile tyres, just to make it 'our' bus. I must admit to being a little nervous about approaching Rob about this, as I wasn't sure it was his thing really, however he was very enthusiastic about our plans, and even offered to undertake the work if we supplied the parts. Fantastic! So we ordered a new 40mm lowering kit, and a new set of 18” rims and tyres, which we had delivered directly to Rob.
Rob and his team fitted the new rims and tyres, and then undertook the lowering job, and did a great job; we're really pleased with how the bus looks. We also asked for a Reimo awning rail to be fitted to the bus too, as we will be doing lots of camping, so will need an awning. Again, this was fitted expertly without any fuss, and looks like it's been fitted from the factory. We had some unavoidable delays before we finally collected the bus, and again Rob was patient and understanding, a true gent.
Well, we've had him for two weeks now, and are totally converted. We love him! The kids think he's great, and we've also visited two big VW shows where he drew lots of attention and interest. It seems we're not the only T2 enthusiasts who have either 'moved up' to T4's, or who are seriously considering doing so.
So, a very big 'Thank You' to Rob and his team. I can't recommend them enough. Professional, knowledgeable and honest, just what every customer wants. If you want a T4 Camper, Rob's your man!
Carole & Andy