We have 8 kids, and live in rural eastern Oregon. We have to travel through a mountain pass to go anywhere. Originally, I ordered a 12 passenger, 170'' Sprinter in 4x4. Then for reasons beyond me, MB will not do the 170'' in a 4x4 passenger van, even though they will in a crew van or cargo van. So after going around and around with MB, I finally got a refund and ordered a 2016 extended, high roof, DRW, diesel, 15 passenger Transit in Magnetic grey (which my kids named Hermes) from Newberg Ford to be drop-shipped to Quadvan for a 4x4 conversion in August 2015.
As many of you have noticed, John at Quadvan is very difficult to get ahold of. And delay after delay happened, to where we just went and got the van from Newberg Ford in January of this year. But now, the frustratingly impossible happened, John called and was able to convert Hermes to 4x4. I could be wrong here, but I think Hermes will be the first diesel, DRW 4x4 Transit. It will be the first from Quadvan, and it is my understanding that Quigley has not completed a diesel DRW yet.
Hermes went into Quadvan on Monday October 10th, with about a one to two week estimate for completion. I will document the build as best I can. I'm about 5 hours away and so I can't get build photos myself. But there will be plenty once I get it back. The van needs a two inch lift to maintain factory clearance do to the 4x4 transfer case and other associated parts. The DEF tank must also be relocated because that is where the new transfer case goes. The front breaks must be swapped with each other because the calipers are on the rear side, and the drive lines need to connect there.
I will be getting an Aluminess front bumper installed at Quadvan,
and then I will instal a Kussmaul auto eject for the engine block heater.
We are usually below zero most mornings here during the winter in the mountains of Eastern Oregon.
'Someone', has driven away with previous vehicles plugged in many times in the past, so a $205 auto eject plug is the way to go at my house.
This summer I found the rear air not strong enough to keep kids from always sweating on hot days in the back. So this spring I think I will try to instal a roof mounted air conditioner.
I was able to speak with John at Quadvan today, and Hermes should be a running 4x4 this week. I should pick her up by Friday. (three weeks total conversion time)As soon as I do, I will be posting photos and giving my thoughts on the finished product.