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What Is a 4x4 Conversion Van?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari

A 4x4 conversion van is any type of van with four wheel drive designed for both on- and off-road use. The van must be a conversion unit, which means the van can change shape to allow for more comfortable camping or living purposes. Usually this means the 4x4 conversion van features a pop-up roof that extends upward when the van is not being driven. This allows for more head room inside the van, and it may even contain an extra sleeping compartment to accommodate more than one person sleeping inside the van.

The particular features of the 4x4 conversion van can vary significantly according to the manufacturer, and some people choose to convert a regular 4x4 van into a conversion van, allowing for more customization. All 4x4 vans feature four wheel drive, either full time or part time, to accommodate off road use. The suspension of a 4x4 conversion van is likely to be overbuilt to accommodate the weight of the vehicle as well as the strenuous driving over dirt roads, rocks, and other treacherous terrain. The engine can come in various sizes, though it is not uncommon to find six-cylinder, eight-cylinder, or even 12-cylinder engines on some of these large vehicles.

Some 4x4 conversion vans may include a built-in propane stove for cooking.
Some 4x4 conversion vans may include a built-in propane stove for cooking.

The inside of the 4x4 conversion van can include several accessories that make living or camping in the van more comfortable and utilitarian. some vans may include a built-in propane stove for cooking, as well as heaters for comfort while sleeping, a shower unit, a sink, and in some cases, even a small toilet and shower. Other vans may be much simpler and only include places specifically designed for sleeping. Some of the more expensive models of 4x4 conversion van may include electricity and even a television for entertainment while camping or otherwise living in the van.

Fold-out tables are a common feature in most conversion vans, and they are useful for dining, cooking, or recreating. The tables often fold up so they are not in the way when the van is being used for driving; seats are often able to be moved to open up usable space in the van when it is parked, and they can then be moved back into place when the tables are folded up for the safest positions while the vehicle is in motion. The chairs themselves may be mounted on swivels that lock into different positions to allow for the most modular options.

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    • Some 4x4 conversion vans may include a built-in propane stove for cooking.
      By: Maygutyak
      Some 4x4 conversion vans may include a built-in propane stove for cooking.