- Lucerne, Switzerland
- T6.1 Westafalia club joker
Check out OBDEleven. Lot's of cool stuff you can tweak (more than Carista). I love mine!Great comments here, thanks. Just bought a T6.1 Ocean and will be shipping to Colombia in Sept 2023. Been to SA a few times, but only by moto and without a dog.
I opted for a new van rather than a T4 or T5 as in 2015 I bought a 2006 Td5 Defender I used to travel 94,000km across Africa and Europe, and although older don't have as many electric faults/fuel issues, older vehicles have wearing out issues (just like the drivers!). I did consider a 2018 T5 TSI (petrol) to avoid potential Euro6 diesel issues, but in the end believe the T6.1 will be better for us.
We went for the OCEAN as it's ready to go as-is. These days interior builders have huge delays, and quality varies greatly. I know the VW cabinetry is so-so. When we rented one from RoadSurfer.com to test before buying, they said to carry extra cabinet latches and roof bed latches. They also suggested not buying a rental due to the intentional and unintentional abuse/wear they see by people not familiar with campers. So, we went for brand spanking new, pre-spec'd version with 30km. Paid 88k€ a few weeks ago in Germany (including VAT), and it's got every possible VW option. We saw prices from 88k-110k€ - but that's a whole other discussion.
I would have preferred a manual roof (faster, less potential problems), but that 's only available on the COAST and they don't offer locking rear diff, so no go for us.
I plan to change 18" alloys to 17" steels with 225/65r17 AT tires, with a single spare underneath and a spare inner-tube. While the spare on a rear rack looks considerably cooler, the constant dirt rubbing off on my head and clothing is annoying, and wife even tested lifting tailgate with upgraded struts, and it was tedious. The tailgate will be used every day, multiple times per day. As for suspension, at this point, I don't plan to modify as I want to keep the overall height at 2m.
Haven't looked into a proper bull bar. Had a beauty on my Defender and used the winch to help a mate who rolled his Defender in remote Kenya, but no winch this time. I need to research if during a light crash, does a good bull bar protect the front end, or cause more damage?
Need to figure out which VCDS to get - the Ross-Tech Hex-Net has me intrigued, but I'm still early into my research. Budget is probably upto 1000€ for the right equipment, and this cell/laptop version is $450. I considered Carista, but it seems the RT would do more. Am I wrong?
Hopefully this group will continue to educate me and we can share ideas/experiences.
Attached is the build sheet as the dealer ordered it 3-years ago - he got the car in November.