1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

T4 Rundown

Discussion in 'T3 & T4 Tech Help Clinic' started by GypsyWannabe, Oct 14, 2010.

  1. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Could any members with T4s, or those who've owned T4s (Melissa ;)), give me a rundown on, or point me in the direction of where to get a rundown on the different T4 models, e.g. van, window van, caravelle etc.; the motors, particularly performance/economy of the 2.5 petrol vs. the turbo diesel, reliability, average kms and how many is too many?, costs of servicing etc.?

    I'm not neglecting or giving up on Janie yet but it has been suggested to me that I might want to look at a T4 and that if I was to sell her, I could get into one with not much more to spend, so my head is currently fighting with my heart.... Definitely early days but I thought I should do some research. :wtf:

    I would probably prefer a manual to an auto, prefer a 2.5 motor to a 2.0 and would like more than 2 seats but 5 is enough - I wouldn't need 7 or 8 and I'd want to be able to fit a bed in, e.g. semi-camper setup.

    Thanks,

    Baz

    PS. Don't tell Janie what I'm thinking. ;)
     
  2. KahunaKombi

    KahunaKombi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    21,022
    Location:
    Bracken Ridge, Qld
    Hey Baz - Split1 recently bought a T4 Caravelle and if you PM him with link to this thread he might be able to offer some advice as he's having a small holiday from here.
    Be interested myself and from what I've seen I'd go 2.5 manual but deisel on 2nd hand ones only a little more expensive.
    There's plenty out there to look at but as with all a service history to me is paramount.
    :D :p
     
  3. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Thanks Bert.
     
  4. mish13

    mish13 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,503
    Location:
    Gold Coast "Parkwood"
    We brought a T4 1998 Auto Caravelle last year, here is the good and the bad

    Good
    Beautiful to drive
    I had the eight seater and it had so much room even with 8 adults in the car.
    Low enough to fit in all the parking stations (my camper wont)
    Dual aircon
    Power steering
    More power to get up the hills

    Bad
    Repair costs are way over the top
    Needed to redo the gear box and were quoted between $5,000 and $7,000 (But was an auto)
    I tried to get replacement interior parts managed to get a couple of things, way over priced
    Tried evey wrecking yard to get some replacmet seats was told I didnt stand a chance.

    I have better luck getting parts for my old camper and the repairs are way cheaper

    We never stopped pouring money into the car, which is the reason it is now sold.(its did have a lot of kilometers on it)

    Here is a good web site

    http://www.vwwatercooled.org.au/forum.php

     
  5. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Thanks Michelle,

    That's one notch for Janie so far. :)

    Cheers,

    Baz
     
  6. Resol

    Resol Active Member

    Messages:
    1,365
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    Ive got a 2.0 litre 95 T4.....
    Its been a gem.... sure it has had some probs but all cars do!!! it has had less than our 2006 Discovery 3 we bought from new!!!!!
    Stokers siding (I think its called that) if he is still around has parts...
    My T4 mech at Burleigh heads is brilliant, service is approx 180 dollars... he charged me 900 dollars to replace the water pump, timing belt, shock rubbers 02 & throttle censors which I thought was reasonable!!!
    I get about 450-500klms to a tanks (approx $80 depending on petrol price) but the diesel would be cheaper..
    My Mech has been able to find every part ive needed so far!!!
    But it is very hard to find parts at wreckers as Michelle said!!
    I like mine and have had it for almost 7yrs now!!
     
  7. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Thanks for that.

    Janie 1 T4 1

    Keep 'em coming!

    Baz
     
  8. Resol

    Resol Active Member

    Messages:
    1,365
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    Baz, check around the windscreen and top of the doglegs as well in the T4 cause they are prone to rust there as well as mine has! (repaired now)
     
  9. Mordred

    Mordred Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    2,887
    Location:
    Penna, Hobart
    Father bought a 2.5 petrol t4 Caravelle new in 1994 and still drives it. Repair parts costs are horrible but it doesn't need that many so you have to measure it out over the time you plan to have it. Work has a 2003 t4 syncro turbo diesel van and after 60000, it has needed a new 4wd gearbox (12000 dollars) after the stupid mechanics that we are contracted to use(they denied it although it happened one day after they replaced the oil in the gearbox), left the sump plug loose on the gearbox and it once the plug was gone and the oil drained out, seized 4 wheels solid at the bottom of the Southern outlet in to Hobart. Thankfully he was only going 60 at the time.. They then managed to munt the engine by misadjusting the valve gear somehow (god only knows) and for a few months it was so bad that hills it used to go up at 110 in top gear were down to 80 in 4th. And they told us that the was nothing they could do. New mechanic when we changed contract has it fixed in a week for $6000, after they blew a steering pump as well. They could not believe how someone could say it was ok. Power back and all. Has been fine since.

    Bottom line if it has been looked after by the right people it should be ok.

    Adrian
     
  10. melissa

    melissa Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,223
    Location:
    Newcastle NSW
    Make sure you get one that has been serviced regularly and it has the history to prove it. Cheaper option should be to look at a Transporter instead of a Caravelle. Velle's are 7 or 8 seaters with carpet, dual airconditioning and trimmed interior panels. If you want something with rubber flooring and seat options then a Transporter is the go. Making a bed in the back will need to be a platform but it means you can have lots of storage underneath - remember the motor is in the front and the back is flat all the way through. Power steering is a luxury you get used to and love very quickly ;)

    Normal services were around the $120 mark - the same as my aircooled. The major service of the timing belt at 100,000km was expensive but it is a big job. Tyres are easy, parts are not that hard to get and if you look to the UK, the scene is huge and you can get lots of ideas for things you want to do. I am not a fan of white ones - they look like delivery fans (no offence Nik) - give me some colour. Good luck Baz - actually - keep Janie and get a T4 as well :lol:
     
  11. Terrordales

    Terrordales Active Member

    Messages:
    4,679
    Location:
    Earth
    Well as Mr. Gould won't say it I might as well


    "it's just a van"
    :lol:


    I agree with Melissa, keep Janie & buy a T4. :)
     
  12. Kai

    Kai Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,760
    Location:
    Sydney, NSW
    Meet halfway and get a late model T3!
     
  13. Grantus

    Grantus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,975
    Location:
    Southern ACT
    Not owned one, but have heard, with good authority, that the later models are the go.......

    Early ones were experimental, as it was a huge transition from the T3, and seemed to be sorted after the first 6 years....
     
  14. vannin

    vannin Member

    Messages:
    559
    Location:
    Abermain
    Delivery vans :lol:
    Ive owned 2 t4s and all I can say is dont buy an auto! Not sure how repair bills etc are compared to aircooled but mines ok at the moment and Ive been able to get most things for it.
    Air con and power steering is great in a daily driver:cool:
    Nik
     
  15. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Thank you all. It doesn't sound like the T4s are too bad an option, if I can find the right one. Most in my price range have 250-300,000km on them and are tradies vans - and there are a lot of white ones! It is going to take a lot to sway me away from Janie, though, and, unfortunately Melissa, having two is not an option! :umm:

    I actually like Janie's steering - the big wheel is easy for me - so power steering is not such a big issue but I guesss air con would be nice occasionally!

    So, a T4 from about 1996 on, Transporter rather than Caravelle as a cheaper option but one with windows and a back seat that will fold down, build a platform bed behind it. Find a 5 cylinder 2.5 model. I guess the diesels would be a bit more costly maintenance-wise???

    It's all getting too hard! :wtf: If it comes down to it, I'll just ask Steve Muller to find me one - he's the one who suggested it! :lol:

    Still interested in hearing T4 stories, though.

    Cheers,

    Baz
     
  16. t4camper

    t4camper Active Member

    Messages:
    330
    Location:
    rainy Maleny
    Purchased a LWB T4 in 2003, TDI with safety pack that consists of dual airbags, traction control, ABS, electric mirrors and windows, electronic diff lock, immoboliser with 2 seats.
    It became our camper with poptop roof, 110litre fridge, 80 litre water, double bed, gas stove, awning, solar panels, 2 x 110 amp hour batteries, cupboards, wine cellar,and camping gear.
    Have done 180 000 klm in seven years, as a tourer and second car use.
    They are very comfortable to drive an have an excellent safety rating.
    There was a model update in 98 that introduced the turbo diesel and driver airbag as standard.
    Caravelle and Kombi options got the "long nose", not actually any longer, front wings, headlights and bonnet have a different profile.
    Caravelle was available as 2.5 petrol, 2.5 TDI, or a 2.8 V6 auto at 150kW.
    Transporter optioned the 2.0 or 2.5 petrol, or the 2.5 TDI.
    Fuel ratings,City/ Highway 2.8, 13/9.3; 2.5 TDI , 8/ 6.2; 2.5 petrol 13.4/ 9.7 for auto.
    Manual 2.5TDI 8.0/5.8; 2.5 Petrol 13.5/8.6 litres per hundred.
    On the convoy to Valla I filled at Glasshouse Mountains and went to Valla and back to Tugan on 62 litres.:D Normally on h'way return around 8 when traveling at the speed limit.
    Towing a racing catatmaran returns around 10l/100 at h'way speed.

    Auto's have a bad reputation for failing and been expensive to repair. I think one contributing factor is that VW did not plan any servicing for the gearbox, manual or auto.
    Regular oil changes are possible and if undertaken would possibly have the auto run a lot longer. Manuals are easy to drive. Transporters and the 2.5's are available as front wheel drive or syncro.
    Lower edge of the windscreen is spot to watch for rust bubbles. Panels are generally fine as there is a hot dip galvanic action and cavity wax. Australia is no where near as harsh as European roads.
    General service is oil and filters and I do my own, brakes and suspension is straight forward. Timing belts are every 100 or 120 or 5 years depending on model, about $1000 to $1400. If no recent service history budget for a timing belt in purchase price. That service should include water pump as that is driven by the tension side of the cam belt.

    The draw backs, You won't get as many waves as in Janie until the locals recognise you. However T4 drivers do wave more at other T4's. Split drivers wave at anything, Bay drivers generally look and sometimes wave. T3 drivers stare longingly and almost lift the finger. :lol:

    Neil
     
  17. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Neil,

    That is excellent information! Thank you. :)

    I hadn't even thought about them being front wheel drive... how is it towing and pulling a boat up a slippery ramp? I have always been led to believe that rear wheel drive was betetr for towing.

    Cheers,

    Baz
     
  18. KahunaKombi

    KahunaKombi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    21,022
    Location:
    Bracken Ridge, Qld
    Baz, angle of the ramp will play a part also (you knew that anyway) + size of boat as with front wheel drive you're going to loose some downward pressure on the front wheels to pull you up the ramp.

    Checked out www.carpoint.com.au (linked to carsales but this site is a shit to get up lately) and there are plenty of T4 (about 64 out of 300 Transporters) in various guises but a hell of a lot of white (change appearance with some stripes :p) ones. Worth checking it out as you can refine down further.

    Have seen some in the past with a fold up rear seat and bed in them - could be an option to look at as still complianced to carry 5 but may be hard to find.
     
  19. t4camper

    t4camper Active Member

    Messages:
    330
    Location:
    rainy Maleny
    Hi Baz,
    Don't regularly use boat ramp as my cat only weighs 75kg floating. Use beach wheels across sand.
    Front wheel drive is fine on road when towing.
    I have no issue lauching and retrieving the club rescue boat, 5 metre centre console with a 4 stroke 60HP at the shallow ramp at Lake Cootharaba where I sail.
    Steep ramp may be different story.
    On slippery surfaces, wet grass, pulling a heavy trailer I don't think the VW is any worse than my previous Toy work vans for bogging.
    Neil
     
  20. GypsyWannabe

    GypsyWannabe Active Member

    Messages:
    3,030
    Location:
    Quakers Hill, Sydney
    Thanks Bert,

    It's only a 4 metre aluminium runabout and Janie has no problems on most ramps I use, so I don't imagine a T4 would have an issue. I can always get someone to stand on the front, anyway! ;)

    Stripes might be an option for a white van, or even airbrush murals circa 70s panel van culture! :lol:

    Like anything, it's worth waiting for the right vehicle, I guess... in themeantime, I will continue driving and looking after Janie as best as I can.


    More good info, thanks Neil.

    Baz
     

Share This Page