High-top Campervans

MMM editorial

The Verdict

High-top campervans were traditionally the domain of small-scale converters, but now larger mainstream manufacturers have also got in on the act. This could be explained by the fact that the market for these campervans has exploded as owners of larger coachbuilts have begun downsizing to smaller, more economical motorhomes. For example 2014 will see new campervans from Auto-Trail, Hymer and Carthago to name just a few. This of course means more choice for you.

At a glance

The pros and cons of an high-top van conversion are:

  • High roof offers headroom and storage
  • Variety of sizes, layouts and budgets
  • Variety can be overwhelming
  • Space limited to size of base vehicle

Full details

High-top campervans are increasingly popular with those downsizing from coachbuilt motorhomes thanks to their ease of driving, economy and more manageable size

Depending on the converter, the high-top campervan may come with a roof that has been factory-fitted by the base vehicle manufacturer or an aftermarket custom version fitted by the converter.

In the main, campervans like this are based on the Sevel vans (Fiat Ducato, Peugeot Boxer and the Citroën Relay). There are a few models based on the smaller VW Transporter and the Ford Transit.

This range of base vehicles has created a very varied mix of interior layouts. Some even have permanent beds.

The latest base vehicles are longer than ever and so the parameters of what can be squeezed in there are greater. This means you can expect a washroom, a large lounge and even bunk beds.

Although mainly narrower, some long wheel-base (LWB) panel van conversions are longer than many compact coachbuilt motorhomes. 

There are campervans to suit all budgets too, from bargain basement used examples such as the Autohomes Camelot, which in the
Summer 2013 issue of MMM was featured for sale for just £5,995 right up to some very expensive models.

Remember though that trying to squeeze too many features into a 'van of constrained dimensions will mean a compromise. 

Work out what you are prepared to forgo before you start shopping for this type of van whether that be storage, kitchen, washroom or lounging space.

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