This is a record of the unfolding story of my project to create a five-door VW412 Variant and it is necessarily very pictorial. The menu topics down the left hand side will enable you to move around the site as you wish. I have subdivided this account to separate out the conversion work from the general repair work and the embellishments I have decided to add to the project. If you are a first-time visitor, I suggest you start with the introduction and then follow through each section to read the whole account. There is a link back to my cars index page at the bottom of the menu.
I was told that VW had actually designed a Type 4 5-door Variant but I could find no real information about it. Then in March 2008 I heard from Fokko Haanstra who lives in The Netherlands with a lot of information on the development of the Type 4 and you can read about it here. The article is also accessible through the topic index, click on Background and then on VW EA 240 Project.
I started work on the project in October 1999 and started posting information about what I was doing in December that year. The main part of the work inevitably fell into two parts, the modification work and then the general repairs. The latter is inevitable on a vehicle of this age in a damp country like Britain!
Work went well for the first year as I was able to work on the car virtually every weekend and I had substantially finished the modification work in May 2000. But then in June 2000 I started a new job in Derby which meant relocating much further away from Kent where the car is stored. I then had an enforced rest because of a series of hospital visits for some treatment to my eyes ... I had to avoid any exertion (bending, lifting, etc) for a year and a half. I started work on the project again in June 2003 on general repairs plus some improvements and continued working mostly alternate weekends with breaks for holidays, work (including the best part of a year in Tunisia), family commitments, and so on.
The repainting was completed in May 2007 and by the end of that year I pretty much finished the majority of the wiring. This included the fitting of new electric window motors, central door locking motors, electric releases for the front hood and tailgate, and an alarm system. Various things then forced a pause in the work and Bryan and Jane managed to lay a concrete floor to their new workshop.
I resumed work on the car in the summer of 2008 and also made progress on rebuilding the engine at home. However, more interruptions ensued and when an opportunity arose in June 2012 to buy a newly rebuilt engine at a very reasonable price, I jumped at the chance.
I have had the wheels blast-cleaned and powder-coated in silver and shod with new Michelin XZX tyres (which are now made in Serbia).
All material on this site © J S Rastall, 1999 to 2014.