The culture of overlanding, camping or caravanning is not a thing which was very popular in India. Lately, tourism department of various states are promoting this culture and many young travelers have also come forward with camper vans. We have featured several videos in the past where people have converted their car, SUV, van into a camper van. Here we have a video where a couple has been travelling in their 33 year old modified Matador van.
The video has been uploaded by Explore The Unseen 2.0 on their YouTube channel. In this video, vlogger talks to the owner of the 1989 model Matador van. The owner got it from a seller in Tamil Nadu and when he received it. The van was in pathetic condition. He spent almost three years to completely modify and restore the van. The owner mentions that it took him one year just to get the mechanical parts repaired. He replaced, most of the parts in the car with something which is more reliable.
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Once he felt that the van was mechanically functioning well, he started fabrication work on the body. First thing he did on the van was to chop the roof off. He replaced it with a metal roof and then installed a tent on top of it. The portion where the tent is resting can be lifted using electronic actuators. The flooring was completely redone and the interiors were also customised. There is a 100 litres of water tank and another tank to collect the waste water. All the seats inside the cabin were removed and overhead cabins were installed in the van.
This was done in order to ensure that there is enough storage space inside the van while travelling. There are cushions inside the cabin which can be converted into a bed whenever needed. As the roof can be lifted, this gives the cabin a much more airy feel and people can stand properly while cooking inside the van. Taking about cooking, this van has a proper stove set up and a small sink is placed right next to it. The water is pumped into the overhead tank using a motor that is placed behind the rear wheels. There is a place where he keeps the refrigerator and also has cabins to store things for his kitchen. As this is an old vehicle, he always carries a Honda Navi with him so that if the van breaks down, he can get to the nearest workshop.
The van gets power from the solar panels installed on the roof. He has installed an inverter and this set up generates power for two days. Matador did not come with AC from the factory. This was a necessity especial when you are travelling in India. He got an AC unit from Toyota Qualis installed in the van. The driver and the co-passenger seats in the van have also been replaced with seats from Hyundai Verna. The original door of the Matadoor was replaced with a door from Maruti Eeco van.