Automotive

MaxTraxx VW 4x4 camper van takes leather and tartan to the wild

MaxTraxx VW 4x4 camper van tak...
Vanworx launched its MaxTraxx camper van for 2020
Vanworx launched its MaxTraxx camper van for 2020
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The Vanworx Maxxtrax's under-bed garage area fits luggage or gear
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The Vanworx Maxxtrax's under-bed garage area fits luggage or gear
The MaxTraxx flashes a peek at its tartan-trimmed interior
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The MaxTraxx flashes a peek at its tartan-trimmed interior
The debut MaxTraxx was built on a medium-wheelbase Crafter, but Vanworx also offers long-wheelbase and MAN TGE builds
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The debut MaxTraxx was built on a medium-wheelbase Crafter, but Vanworx also offers long-wheelbase and MAN TGE builds
This MaxTraxx includes an optional rear ladder
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This MaxTraxx includes an optional rear ladder
The MaxTraxx includes VW 4Motion AWD with locking differential
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The MaxTraxx includes VW 4Motion AWD with locking differential
Vanworx launched its MaxTraxx camper van for 2020
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Vanworx launched its MaxTraxx camper van for 2020
The MaxTraxx is Vanworx's response to the off-grid adventure/wild camping market
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The MaxTraxx is Vanworx's response to the off-grid adventure/wild camping market
A long-wheelbase Vanworx MaxTraxx
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A long-wheelbase Vanworx MaxTraxx
The long-wheelbase van creates a deeper garage area
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The long-wheelbase van creates a deeper garage area
This one has a little less tartan but still maintains some trim on its fridge
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This one has a little less tartan but still maintains some trim on its fridge
Available wet bath compartment
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Available wet bath compartment
Long-wheelbase Vanworx MaxTraxx camper van
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Long-wheelbase Vanworx MaxTraxx camper van
A look back at the long-wheelbase rear bed
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A look back at the long-wheelbase rear bed
Vanworx debuted the MaxTraxx as a prototype last fall and now offers it as a package
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Vanworx debuted the MaxTraxx as a prototype last fall and now offers it as a package
The debut MaxTraxx had plenty of colorful tartan and bright-yellow trim
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The debut MaxTraxx had plenty of colorful tartan and bright-yellow trim
Indoor/outdoor-access fridge/freezer
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Indoor/outdoor-access fridge/freezer
Kitchen block with available induction cooktop
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Kitchen block with available induction cooktop
The original MaxTraxx came with a full slate of options, including a Seikel lift, snorkel and full-length roof rack
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The original MaxTraxx came with a full slate of options, including a Seikel lift, snorkel and full-length roof rack
More bri
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More bright, vibrant tartan in the driver's area
Garage shelving put to use for luggage
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Garage shelving put to use for luggage
There's no rugged bumper, but the neatly embedded front winch adds some extra capability
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There's no rugged bumper, but the neatly embedded front winch adds some extra capability
View gallery - 21 images

UK camper van specialist Vanworx goes bigger and burlier with its latest van. Not to be confused with the traction aids of the same name (only one x in those "trax"), the new MaxTraxx package turns a full-size VW Crafter into a well-appointed off-grid exploration machine. The supple leather and vibrant tartan trim inside prove the perfect getaway from the rain-sheeting, mud-splashing chaos outside.

More a flexible package than a specific van model, the MaxTraxx can be built on either medium- or long-wheelbase second-generation Crafters with 4Motion all-wheel drive and locking differential. It can also be built on the Crafter's corporate sibling, the MAN TGE 4x4. Vanworx offers two- and four-sleeper options, keeping things straightforward inside with a very traditional European-style layout (albeit flipped for UK right-hand driving).

The recognizable floor plan has the bed at the rear, fixed high to provide a storage garage underneath. A wet bath is included with the two-sleeper, whereas the four-sleeper swaps out the bathroom for a second bed, portable Thetford toilet and rear outdoor shower. Both models enjoy hot water from a Webasto diesel heater/water boiler combo.

Farther ahead, the MaxTraxx includes a kitchen block just inside the passenger-side sliding door, complete with available dual-burner induction cooktop, sink and Dometic fridge/freezer. The dinette is located on the opposite side, placing a dual-seat rear bench across an expandable tabletop from the swivel driver-area seats.

The debut MaxTraxx had plenty of colorful tartan and bright-yellow trim
The debut MaxTraxx had plenty of colorful tartan and bright-yellow trim

In the original Prototype 001 featured in many of the pictures, bright-yellow tartan and yellow cabinetry splash the dark gray leather seats and black furniture with serious color. Even the fridge/freezer gets a tartan face panel.

Back out through the sliding door, Vanworx gives the MaxTraxx the proper look and capability of an off-grid adventure van. Managing Director Dave Garnsworthy spent time researching off-road van design in California and Germany before coming back and speccing out the MaxTraxx. The final design leans a little more toward the understated tastes of Europe, with none of the massive lifts, heavy-duty bumpers, face-shielding grille guards or huge rear cargo carriers you'd see in the States.

There's no rugged bumper, but the neatly embedded front winch adds some extra capability
There's no rugged bumper, but the neatly embedded front winch adds some extra capability

The exterior upgrade package starts with a suspension lift, skid protection, rock slider and snorkel kit from German specialist Seikel. The MaxTraxx rooftop gets a touch of American flair with its burly full-length rack finished in front with a set of Lazer off-road rally lights, a Thule awning hung from its side. Despite the lack of a rugged aftermarket bumper jutting out like a powerful chin, the MaxTraxx does have a Warn winch embedded neatly in the VW front-end. BFGoodrich all-terrain tires hugging 18-in Delta wheels provide motive traction.

Vanworx supplies only a "price on application" on its MaxTraxx web page, but in introducing the new camper van at the 2019 Motorhome and Caravan Show last October, it announced base pricing at £70,400 with VAT (approx. US$88,725) for a medium-wheelbase Crafter 4Motion MaxTraxx with 138-hp 2.0-liter TDI engine and six-speed manual transmission. Prototype 001 was designed as a show vehicle to highlight various upgrades, like the roof rack, winch, Seikel off-road kit, leather and tartan upholstery, and lithium battery upgrade in place of the standard leisure battery, pushing the price up to £100,700 (US$126,900).

Source: Vanworx

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