History of the Volkswagen T4
When production of the Volkswagen T4 started in August 1990, also known as a Eurovan in the USA, it was a huge leap of faith that the fans of the rear engined Transporters would accept it. After a slow start the T4 has become a very popular model with VW fans, tradesmen using them as a works van, motorhome owners and people looking for a truly multipurpose leisure vehicle.
T4 was a completely new model using modern ideas, many taken from the Golf and Passat range. Being front engined, front wheel drive and having a monocoque construction, broke nearly all its links to 50 years of heritage.
T4 model variants
Built at the dedicated Transporter factory in Hanover, Germany, it was available in SWB (Short Wheel Base) or LWB (Long Wheel Base). The range (Excluding custom built models) consists of:
|●||Panel Van||(no side windows)|
|●||Eurovan||(2 side windows, sliding door and opposite)|
|●||Kombi||(windows but no rear seating)|
|●||Caravelle||(5, 7, 8, 9 seat options)|
|●||Single Cab Pickup|
|●||Double Cab Pickup|
|●||Syncro||(4x4 available all models)|
Camper and commercial conversions
Again, as with its predecessors, it became a firm favorite with the vehicle conversion companies. It has been made as refrigerated vehicles, police and ambulances, taxis, disability vehicles with wheel chair ramps etc. It even became the somewhat unique Razor Back, which was built as a brewery delivery vehicle with lowering floor to load/unload barrels of beer.
Increasingly VW T4 vans are being converted into campers and day vans. There are a growing number of garages speciliaisng in T4 camper conversions, such as Vanworx, but many owners prefer to choose a DIY conversion kit.
Production history and technical changes
1990 to 1995 Few model changes. The range was offered with a choice of petrol and diesel engines.
The Caravelle VR6 was introduced necessitating a longer nose to accommodate the new engine. The longer nose was used on the Caravelles thereafter, and the short nose T4 was used for the lesser models.
2003 Summer saw the end of T4 production in Hanover, to make way for it’s newer brother, the T5.
T4 engine numbers
The engine number is stamped on the front of the engine block. On the Petrol engine the number is located below two of the spark plugs. The engine number is also shown on the timing belt cover and on the ID plate on the door pillar. On the Diesel engine the number is located between the injection pump and the vacuum pump. And is also shown on the timing belt cover and on the ID plate on the door pillar.
T4 chassis numbers
The chassis number, or VIN, can be found on the top (offside) of the dashboard and is best viewed from outside.
This example chassis number, WV2ZZZ70Z2H131652, belongs to a Type 4 VW Caravelle/Multivan built in 2002 in Hanover. It was number 131652 off the production line.
Analysing the chassis number will reveal important information about the van...
|2||‘Type of vehicle’ - 1 = Panel van, 2 = window van, 3 = chassis cab|
|2||‘Year of manufacture’|
|H||‘Built in Hanover’|
|131652||‘Production line number’|
|10th digit||Model year||Build date|
|M||1991||1st Aug 90 > 31st Jul 91|
|N||1992||1st Aug 91 > 31st Jul 92|
|P||1993||1st Aug 92 > 31st Jul 93|
|R||1994||1st Aug 93 > 31st Jul 94|
|S||1995||1st Aug 94 > 31st Jul 95|
|T||1996||1st Aug 95 > 31st Jul 96|
|V||1997||1st Aug 96 > 31st Jul 97|
|W||1998||1st Aug 97 > 31st Jul 98|
|X||1999||1st Aug 98 > 31st Jul 99|
|Y||2000||1st Aug 99 > 31st Jul 00|
|1||2001||1st Aug 00 > 31st Jul 01|
|2||2002||1st Aug 01 > 31st Jul 02|
|3||2003||1st Aug 02 > 31st Jul 03|
Over 400 Volkswagen T4 parts and accessories online here...