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2wd to 4wd conversion

M

Miha_p

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13
Location
Celje
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T5 SE 130
Hello,
im looking for someone who did 2wd to 4wd conversion on T5.
My plan is:
-find all info about fitting mechanical parts
-find al info about electronics and wires instalation
-explore copatibility with OEM part numbers
-find doner
-find a crazy mechanic who will do the job

All infomation are welcome.
Thanks,

Miha
 
MattBW

MattBW

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I know a few people have been converting 2wd T25s to 4wd Syncro, but pretty much mostly DIY jobs, quite a lot of work but not impossible. I think paying someone to do it may be a lot of hours.

Unless you are very attached to your van then it may be cheaper to sell and buy a 4motion but it should be possible if you really fancy the challenge or know the handy people. The VW OEM catalogue should have everything you need for parts etc.

Do you want entirely OEM, or you could go for something a little more bespoke. ;)
https://expeditionportal.com/forum/...onversion-for-vw-t5-4motion-by-seikel.129822/
 
Velma's Dad

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MattBW

MattBW

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haha, yes true, we can but dream, if money were no object.

We were helping a friend last night and we were using his Unimog as a handy high platform to access a massive storage tent roof. It is an amazing beast, but a vehicle that is best with ear defenders to travel in, maybe not for me ;) That said the wading depth is 4 times that of a Land Rover. Amazing thing, but definitely wont fit in car parks haha.
 
Velma's Dad

Velma's Dad

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Ha, Unimog is okay but for really sticky stuff you need one of these...

300px-Alvis_Stalwart_W%26P2011.JPG

(Alvis Stalwart, I used to have 25 of them in Germany. Permanent 6 wheel drive via epicyclic hubs. Fully amphibious, with water jet propulsion. Rolls Royce straight-8 petrol engine. The best exhaust sound of any vehicle, ever.)
 
sidepod

sidepod

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Ha, Unimog is okay but for really sticky stuff you need one of these...

300px-Alvis_Stalwart_W%26P2011.JPG

(Alvis Stalwart, I used to have 25 of them in Germany. Permanent 6 wheel drive via epicyclic hubs. Fully amphibious, with water jet propulsion. Rolls Royce straight-8 petrol engine. The best exhaust sound of any vehicle, ever.)
All that needs is an over engineered electro-hydraulic roof.
 
Sandyvan

Sandyvan

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1,173
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Derbyshire
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T6 Ocean 150
haha, yes true, we can but dream, if money were no object.

We were helping a friend last night and we were using his Unimog as a handy high platform to access a massive storage tent roof. It is an amazing beast, but a vehicle that is best with ear defenders to travel in, maybe not for me ;) That said the wading depth is 4 times that of a Land Rover. Amazing thing, but definitely wont fit in car parks haha.

I don't think you feel the barrier move out of the way when you hit it :)
 
B J G

B J G

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Can't follow the logic in doing this as you need a donor 4wd vehicle and a standard 2 wheel drive vehicle.
Why not just keep the donor 4wd and upgrade that as required?

Labour would be reduced by a minimum of 50%.
No need to strip donor and recipient vehicles before rebuilding recipient.
 
sidepod

sidepod

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Just puttin it out there but, me thinks if the OP was serious, this would be the last forum to seek advice? I mean, emptying the water tank is pushing it for the vast majority of users here?

:D
 
Velma's Dad

Velma's Dad

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Can't follow the logic in doing this as you need a donor 4wd vehicle and a standard 2 wheel drive vehicle.
Why not just keep the donor 4wd and upgrade that as required?

Labour would be reduced by a minimum of 50%.
No need to strip donor and recipient vehicles before rebuilding recipient.

I think the OP is proposing sourcing new OEM components for the conversion, rather than stripping a donor 4x4.

I'm assuming the cost of sourcing all the OEM parts will be stratospheric, but would be interesting/entertaining to see anyway!
 
Sandyvan

Sandyvan

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Just puttin it out there but, me thinks if the OP was serious, this would be the last forum to seek advice? I mean, emptying the water tank is pushing it for the vast majority of users here?

:D

Filling it in the first place is :Iamsorry
 
M

Maverik

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9
Location
Salisbury
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T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
Hello all.


I've just been alerted to this post by a friend, I'm actually just looking at the process of doing this myself. I’d generally advise readers not to get hung-up on the why’s and wherefores as its not really part of the initial question.


As per previous advice I would look to more technically orientated forums to start your info searches, its quite common for Golf owners to do a 4wd conversion in which a lot of the software side is similar which will give you an idea of where you need to start.

T5.1 vehicles seem (from my searching) very much "set up" to accept the 4 motion hardware (mechanical components) as standard as VW seem to have standardised the "T" platform the younger the model.

The main component that makes the vehicle 4wd is the "Haldex" unit, this is a 3rd party built component made by BorgWarner which is quite lucky as you can get independent Haldex control software. In which case you can throw in the mechanical parts and add a 3rd party haldex controller and you’ll have a 4wd solution.


If you want the 4wd to work as VW required it then this is when it starts to get a little more tricky.

The Haldex unit is controlled on a CAN bus network (as part of the rest of the vehicle) and from what I understand is controlled from the ABS/ESC module which is part of the ABS pump.

The Haldex needs connecting to the network and then the ABS unit re-programmed to know to have to send signals to the Haldex.

From what I've gathered some VW control modules generally only need software changes (factory internal settings designed to be changed) but there also appears that some modules have different hardware set-ups. As modules are also designed to work as a team in effect there may also be other changes you need to do throughout the CAN bus network modules so everything accepts everything else, this re-programming of modules is also a bit of a black art and from an enthusiasts point of view its very much a game of try it and see and comparing it to other software “maps”. If you took a suggestion to VW I think they’d just laugh at you and say it could only be done from the initial build stage.


4motion Transporter upgrades seem to be few and far between, a chap did it in New Zealand on an older early T5 where he had a donor vehicle and just swapped everything over, I've not been able to find anyone who had done a T5 retrofit.


I've come to a conclusion that the hardware side is "relatively" straight forward bolting stuff in - with a question mark over whether the gearbox needs to be removed to install the final end drive assembly.


Getting a list of the parts needed for a conversion isn’t also that straight forward certainly as far as I can tell the wiring for the rear differential is part of a larger body loom, if you shuffle through online parts catalogues you can find the parts needed but its quite time consuming. – having a reference vehicle would also be worth its weight due to you being able to compare what you need.


The ease and number of parts needed I think very much depends on your initial van spec. If you van has an engine and gearbox which was sold by VW as having a 4 motion option then it may be easier, if not then you’ll maybe need gearbox changes as well as exhaust modifications.


As a personal “garage” project its certainly economically do-able using 2nd hand parts and a bit of ingenuity and a fair bit of learning, to ask a garage to do the work and buy new parts it would be rather costly and quite possibly a bit of an experiment for them.
 
sidepod

sidepod

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We are fully understand how a 4wd system works thanks. The why’s and wherefores are precisely what makes it a bonkers project.

The project as outlined makes no sense whatsoever outside of a home garage job.

It would take literally years if you weren’t doing it full time.

Of course it’s possible, anything is possible.

As stated, it would be so much simpler to buy a 4 motion van and transplant the Cali stuff into that.
 
M

Maverik

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9
Location
Salisbury
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T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
We are fully understand how a 4wd system works thanks. The why’s and wherefores are precisely what makes it a bonkers project.

The project as outlined makes no sense whatsoever outside of a home garage job.

It would take literally years if you weren’t doing it full time.

Of course it’s possible, anything is possible.

As stated, it would be so much simpler to buy a 4 motion van and transplant the Cali stuff into that.

Hung up I see,

:) the project you mean doesn't make sense to you :) which is fine.

Having just transplanted a good chunk of California equipment into my 2wd vehicle I'd wholly argue the opposite :)

It wouldn't take years, and it wont take me years if I decide to do it.

So do you have any logical, technical advice to add to the table? :) :) :) :)
 
sidepod

sidepod

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The point I’m making is “why”

It’s not as though the end result isn’t readily available on the market.
The whole point of a mad project is to create something that isn’t available.

Once you’ve created a copy of the genuine article you’ll have something worth less than the genuine article.

Hey ho. Your time your money.
 
WelshGas

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If the 4Motion system was a straight forward mechanical 4 wheel drive system then probably fairly straight forward - as on something like the Land Rover Defender.

Unfortunately the VW system, as fitted on the T5, is a little more complicated involving more electronic than mechanical systems.
Fitting the parts would be fairly straightforward, fitting and programming the various sensors, wiring and programming is another story in itself. Provided of course that the electronics of the donor and recipient vehicles are compatible and you are knowledgeable in the necessary programming skills otherwise you could end up with 2 dud vehicles.
 
ArunAlec

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I'd be interested in how the insurance company would view this "modification".
Also, if and when sold I'd be imagine any prospective buyer would be cautious of such a major mod.
 
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