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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
How Can A Camera Tell What This Is?

They all look the same, my Gran always said, bless her. So, is this a Caravelle, Transporter Panel Van or Transporter Window Van based DIY camper conversion? Or is it an ex-works California Freestyle? Is it petrol or diesel, does it have 4-cylinders or 5, is it manual or automatic? Is it two wheel drive or four wheel drive? Is it Euro 2 or Euro 3 compliant? Is it rated F or G in the current car tax bands or does it qualify as a Goods Vehicle or a Dual Purpose Vehicle that can carry both people and goods, as defined in the Road Traffic Act 1988?

The vehicle's registration or log book holds the key to this conumdrum as your license plate number is cross referenced with the DVLA database.

The V5 Registration Document

All relevent information should be on the V5 registration document (log book) and it is the owner's responsibility to ensure that all the details are present and correct. The information held at DVLA, Swansea determines which car tax band or Vehicle Excise band your vehicle falls into, whether it is LEZ exempt and, in some boroughs, how much a residential parking permit costs.

Particular attention should be made to:
  • the vehicle's Revenue Weight [Y], which only applies to Goods Vehicles (i.e Panel Vans and Chassis Cabs), should correspond with the Gross Vehicle Weight printed on the chassis plate;
  • the first three digits of the VIN / chassis / frame number (E) - WV1, WV2 or WV3 - as mistakes were made when some T4's were initially registered. For instance, my WV1 Panel Van did have WV2 printed on the log book...
  • the CO2 emissions (V7 / V1) figure - only relevent if the vehicle was registered on or after 1st March 2001 - click here for a comprehensive list of CO2 and fuel economy data.
  • the engine number (P5) provides the only clue to the emissions standard that your vehicle complies with.
  • it is worth noting that the model year will not necessarily marry with the registration date (which can never be changed).
Revenue Weight

Although the Revenue Weight should only apply to WV1 and some WV3 chassis numbers, I have listed all models here as new Motor Vehicle Emission Groups kick in on 1st September 2009 and WV2 Window Vans and some Caravelles appear to be registered as Light Goods Vehicles. These new emissions rules cancel out all previous categories but, as the rules currently stand, there may be implications for some Motor Caravan owners whose vehicles exceed 2000kg Unladen Weight.

The Revenue Weight will remain on the V5 if you are submitting the registration document to DVLA to register your panel van or window van (and Caravelle) as a Motor Caravan. Ex-works Motor Caravan published weights tend to be given either as Dry Weight or Mass In Running Order (MRO - whatever that is supposed to mean) and Gross Vehicle Weight or Gross Vehicle Weight and Payload, from which the unladen weight can be deduced.

For the Motor Caravan specific weights click here.

Published Manufacturer Unladen Weights* and Gross Vehicle Weights specific to the T4 (figures for lwb models are shown in brackets).

T4a January 1990 to December 1995 (base models only)

WV1 Panel Van
  • 4-cylinder 800kg "reduced" payload - 1520kg ULW / 2320kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder 800kg "reduced" payload - 1595kg ULW / 2395kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder 1000kg "normal" payload - 1520kg (1570kg) ULW / 2515kg (2565kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1000kg "normal" payload - 1595kg (1645kg) ULW / 2590kg (2640kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder 1200kg "increased" payload - 1520kg (1570kg) ULW / 2725kg (2750kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1200kg "increased" payload - 1595kg (1645kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
note WV1 unladen weights are calculated with driver, WV2 unladen weights are given without driver to account for windows and reinforced seat and seat belt mounting points.

WV2 Window Van
  • WV2 4-cylinder 800 "reduced" payload - 1520kg ULW / 2320kg GVW
  • WV2 5-cylinder 800 "reduced" payload - 1595kg ULW / 2395kg GVW
  • WV2 4-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1520kg (1570kg) ULW / 2515kg (2565kg) GVW
  • WV2 5-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1595kg (1645kg) ULW / 2590kg (2640kg) GVW
  • WV2 4-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1520kg (1570kg) ULW / 2725kg (2750kg) GVW
  • WV2 5-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1595kg (1645kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg)
WV2 Caravelle
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - 1565kg (1665kg) ULW / 2515kg (2565kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - 1640kg (1740kg) ULW / 2590kg (2640kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder Caravelle with lowered suspension - 1565kg ULW / 2465kg GVW
  • 5-cylincer Caravelle with lowered suspension - 1640kg ULW / 2540kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder Caravelle "increased" payload - 1565kg (1665kg) ULW / 2725kg (2750kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder Caravelle "increased" payload - 1640kg (1740kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
WV2 Multivan
  • 4-cylinder - 1705kg ULW / 2465kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder - 1780kg ULW / 2540kg GVW
WV3 chassis with cab
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - 1315kg (1340kg) ULW / 2465kg (2515kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - 1390kg (1415kg) ULW / 2540kg (2590kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder "increased" payload - 1315kg (1340kg) ULW / 2725kg (2725kg / 3225kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "increased" payload - 1390kg (1415kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg / 3300kg) GVW
WV3 chassis with double cab
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - (1460kg) ULW / (2515kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - (1535kg) ULW / (2590kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder "increased" payload - (1460kg) ULW / (2725kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "increased" payload - (1535kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
WV3 double cab
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - (1590kg) ULW / (2515kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - (1665kg) ULW / (2590kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder "increased" payload - (1590kg) ULW / (2725kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "increased" payload - (1665kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
WV3 or WV1 (?) pick-up
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - 1470kg (1520kg) ULW / 2465kg (2515kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - 1545kg (1595kg) ULW / 2540kg (2590kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder "increased" payload - 1470kg (1520kg) ULW / 2725kg (2725kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "increased" payload - 1545kg (1595kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
T4b January 1996 to Summer 2003 (base models only)

WV1 Panel Van
  • 4-cylinder 800 "reduced" payload - 1580kg ULW / 2380kg GVW

  • 4-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1580kg (1630kg) ULW / 2575kg (2625kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1655kg (1705kg) ULW / 2650kg (2700kg) GVW
  • TDI 1000 "normal" payload - 1685kg (1735kg) ULW / 2680kg (2730kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1580kg ULW / 2525kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1655kg ULW / 2600kg GVW
  • TDI with lowered suspension - 1685kg ULW / 2630kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1580kg (1630kg) ULW / 2785kg (2800kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1655kg (1705kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI 1200 "increased" payload - 1685kg (1735kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
note both the WV1 panel van and WV2 window van unladen weights include a typical weight of a driver.

WV2 Window Van
  • 4-cylinder 800 "reduced" payload - 1607kg ULW / 2430kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1607kg (1649kg) ULW / 2600kg (2600kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1000 "normal" payload - 1682kg (1724kg) ULW / 2700kg (2700kg) GVW
  • TDI 1000 "normal" payload - 1712kg (1754kg) ULW / 2700kg (2700kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1607kg ULW / 2520 GVW
  • 5-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1724kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
  • TDI with lowered suspension - 1712kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1607kg (1649kg) ULW / 2700kg (2700kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder 1200 "increased" payload - 1682kg (1724kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI 1200 "increased" payload - 1712kg (1754kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
WV2 Caravelle
  • 4-cylinder "normal" payload - 1780kg (1820kg) ULW / 2600kg (2600kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "normal" payload - 1855kg (1895kg) ULW / 2700lg (2700kg) GVW
  • TDI "normal" payload - 1885kg (1925kg) ULW / 2700kg (2700kg) GVW
  • V6 "normal" payload - 1885kg (1925kg) ULW / 2620kg (2700kg) GVW
  • 4-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1780kg ULW / 2520kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1855kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
  • TDI / V6 with lowered suspension - 1885kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder "increased" payload - 1780kg (1820kg) ULW / 2700kg (2700kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder "increased" payload - 1855kg (1895kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI "increased" payload - 1885kg (1925kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • V6 "increased" payload - (1925kg) ULW / (2800KG) GVW
WV2 Multivan
  • 4-cylinder - 1840kg ULW / 2600kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder - 1915kg ULW / 2700kg GVW
  • TDI - 1945kg ULW / 2700kg GVW
  • 4-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1840kg ULW / 2520kg GVW
  • 5-cylinder with lowered suspension - 1915kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
  • TDI / V6 with lowered suspension - 1945kg ULW / 2620kg GVW
WV3 chassis with cab
  • 4-cylinder - 1375kg (1400kg) ULW / 2785kg (2785kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder - 1450kg (1475kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI - 1480kg (1505kg) / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
WV3 chassis with double cab
  • 4-cylinder - (1520kg) ULW / (2785kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder - (1595kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI - (1625kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
WV3 double cab
  • 4-cylinder - (1650kg) ULW / (2785kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder - (1725kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI - (1755kg) ULW / (2800kg) GVW
WV3 or WV1 (?) pick-up
  • 4-cylinder - 1530kg (1580kg) ULW / 2785kg (2785kg) GVW
  • 5-cylinder - 1605kg (1655kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
  • TDI - 1635kg (1685kg) ULW / 2800kg (2800kg) GVW
* add the following to the Unladen Weight and take away from the Gross Weight to calculate your payload.
  • High roof panel van + 50kg (lwb only)
  • Motor Caravan Elevating Roof + 60kg
  • Motor Caravan High Roof + (swb)
  • Motor Caravan High Roof + (lwb)
  • Syncro All Road Transmission + 100kg (manual only)
  • Automatic Transmission + 30kg
  • plus the weight of driver for T4a WV2 models
The specification and equipment levels of each individual model will vary - invariably higher spec models with air conditioning, auxiliary heaters, and so on will be heavier when unladen.

It may be possible to downrate the gross vehicle weight, for LEZ purposes...

http://www.svtech.co.uk/motorhomes.html


Footnote:

Production Codes for payload

OJ1 - vans/Caravelles with reduced payload and lowered suspension (800kg)
OJ2 - normal payload (1000kg)
OJ3 - increased payload (1200kg)
OJ4 - 3300kg chassis cab
OJ5 - vans/Caravelles with additional payload capacity (over and above OJ3)

Chassis Number

Is this a WV2 Caravelle or a WV2 Transporter Window Van (nee Kombi)? It is in fact a 1993 5-cylinder Caravelle Syncro.

The T4 Range

WV1
  • Panel Van - short wheel base, long wheel base and long wheelbase with hightop. These vehicles are classed as Light Duty Goods Vehicles and are included in Motor Vehicle Emission Groups N1-1.
  • Conversions to fulfil "Specific Social Needs" - this group can include some minibuses and vans adapted to carry wheelchairs, both of which will have windows cut into the sides. These vehicles should have been Type Approved by their respective coachbuilders and reclassified from N1 goods vehicles to M passenger vehicles.
  • Motor Caravan - most Camper Vans that were either not built by Volkswagen partner companies (i.e. companies that may not comply with BS5750 or ISO9001 / 9002 quality standards) or DIY conversions. These should be reregistered as Motor Caravans to be included in the M passenger vehicle category - the Taxable Weight may remain on the V5 document as a reference to the base vehicle.
WV2
  • Window Van - short wheel base, long wheel base and long wheelbase with hightop. Window vans may not have any side windows or passenger seats fitted (although the fitting points will be present), but they will still be classed as M1 passenger vehicles for emissions purposes from 2009.
  • Caravelle - short wheel base (Class M1 passenger seats = 5,6,7 or 8) and long wheel base (Class M1 passenger seats = 8 or Class M2 passenger seats = 9, 10 or 11).
  • Multivan - short wheelbase only; 5 passenger seats.
  • Motor Caravan - any ex-works Motor Caravan built by a Volkswagen Partner company, or any other conversion on a WV2 chassis (which should still be reregistered as a Motor Caravan).
Some Transporters, Caravelles and Motor Caravans may have been adapted to fulfil "Specific Social Needs".

Definition Of A Motor Caravan

Minimum requirements to reregister and insure a newly completed, or soon to be completed, Motor Caravan are:
  • at least one side window (preferably an opening one).
  • some form of permanently secured bed - a bed/seat will require seat belt attachments (on vehicles over 2500kg GVW, from April 2012).
  • a useable fixed water vessel (either a tank or large bottles equaling at least 27litres/6 gallons) that can pump water.
  • a means of cooking with at least two burners and it's own fuel supply that can be stowed in a cabinet.
  • a useable table that must have a permanent mounting point that corresponds to a seating position.
  • a means of clothes storage - under the bed will suffice.
Anything less than these basic requirements may deem the van to be a "Day Van" or "Surf Van" and as such reregistration to a Motor Caravan may not be possible to reflect the change of use made to the vehicle.

WV3
  • Cab with Chassis - short wheel base and long wheel base.
  • Double Cab with Chassis - long wheel base only.
The WV3 chassis range includes the "Powercab" (PR code OJ4), which is just the T4 front end with no rear chassis - and sometimes without doors, roof or windscreen. This allows for alternative chassis' to be bolted onto the cab, such as the 3300 tonne GVW Alko Chassis (which is popular with Motorhome coachbuilders) shown here. Specialist manufacturer's fit sprung or unsprung chassis to meet specific requirements - but a WV3 chassis can either be grouped as a Goods Vehicle or a Passenger Vehicle (including Community Buses).

Engine Number

Euro 3 Compliant Engines (production code OGE)

from July 1999
  • TDI - 111kw (150bhp) red "I" engine code AXG
from November 1999
  • TDI Automatic - 75kw (102bhp) engine code AUF
from May 2000
  • TDI - 75kw (102bhp) engine code AYC
  • TDI - 65kw (88bhp) blue "I" engine code AYY
from May 2001
  • TDI - 75kw (102bhp) engine code AXL
  • TDI - 75kw (102bhp) engine code ACV (from engine number 266252)
  • TDI - 65kw (88bhp) engine code AJT (from engine number 058063)
All other Catalyst diesel engines are Euro 2 (production code OGD) compliant apart from the normally aspirated 1.9D and 2.4D (without Catalyst), which are Euro 1 engines.

With T4's built from July 1999, production codes OGD (Euro 2) or OGE (Euro3) will be present on the data card found behind the fuse box or inside the front cover of the service book. If neither are present with your vehicle, VW Customer Services, or your nearest dealer, will be able to tell whether or not your T4 is Euro 3 compliant from the chassis number.

The Model Year vs Registration Letter

The reasons for the model year not marrying with the UK registration letter are many

WV1 ZZZ 70 Z _ H xxxxxx

Model Years ran from August in the preceeding year to July of the year indicated until 2001 model year which started in May 2000 in the preceeding year.

T4a
  • 1990 model year - L - from August 1989 = G prefix
  • 1991 - M = H
  • 1992 - N = J
  • 1993 - P = K
  • 1994 - R = L
  • 1995 - S = M
  • 1996 - T = N
T4b
  • 1996 - T = N
  • 1997 - V = P
  • 1998 - W = R
  • 1999 - X = S to end of February 1999, March 1999 on = T
  • 2000 - Y = T to end of August 1999, Septmeber 1999 = V to end of February 2000, March 2000 = W
  • 2001 - 1 (starts May 2000) - W to end of August 2000, September 2000 = X to end of February 2001, 1st March 2001 = Y Reg (i.e new CO2 tax bands).
  • 2002 - 2 = Y to end of August 2001, September 2001 = 51 to end of February 2002, March 2002 = 02
  • 2003 - 3 = 02 to end of August 2002, September 2002 = 52 to end of February 2003, March 2003 = 03
  • 2004 - 4 = 03 to end of August 2003, September 2003 = 54 Reg
As indicated for 2004 there may well be hangover stock lingering at the docks and distribution centres. This can apply to any year; for instance a 2000 year model with a Y chassis code may have been registered after 1st March 2001 with a registration prefix Y, making it liable for the full weight of car tax, even though it was made over a year earlier.

Summary

Unless your T4 is a Motor Caravan, the amount of car tax you pay and whether you are liable for the daily LEZ charge depends entirely on the data held at DVLA.

Depending on where you live, it may be in your best interest to leave your log book alone (rightly or wrongly, after all this must be a classic postcode lottery), rather than change it. However, if your van or Caravelle has a Euro 3 compliant engine and was sold before 1st March 2001 you will be quids in, if you do change your log book, or let Transport For London know (should you wish to drive into London or around it's suburbs)...
 

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Excellent work Stephen, we're indebted to you!

Can you clarify one small puzzle? I have a very late T4 2.5tdi auto, first reg May 04. The engine code is AUF, and the V5 gives a co2 emission of 230g/km - a tiny bit lower than the ordinary 235g/km. I don't suppose it might be in euro 4? or was it just a tweak by VW? (My Service schedule lists it as OGE)

Keep up the good work, Tony
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Excellent work Stephen, we're indebted to you!

Can you clarify one small puzzle? I have a very late T4 2.5tdi auto, first reg May 04. The engine code is AUF, and the V5 gives a co2 emission of 230g/km - a tiny bit lower than the ordinary 235g/km. I don't suppose it might be in euro 4? or was it just a tweak by VW? (My Service schedule lists it as OGE)

Keep up the good work, Tony
Thanks Tony for the input - it's feedback like this that is the reason why I am running these articles here and not in my usual hidy hole, where we've got a ton of other stuff in the pipeline...

Is your van a 2003 model or a 2004 model - i.e. built from May 2003 onwards alongside the T5?

The figures I've given are from 1996 (with updated 2000 figures from VW given in brackets - I've just looked; the 235g/km is the updated figure). Perhaps the EU3 T4's produce less CO2, i.e. they are more economical. The list of CO2 figures for the whole range will be in your handbook. If this is the case then it could make a big difference to some folks. Perhaps all 2003 model CO2 figures are different, unfortunately I do not have that info to hand.

I must add that the info on DVLA's database is only as good as the info they receive, so there is no guarantee that their database is correct.

No T4 was EU4 - OGE refers to EU3 compliance. T5's became EU4 compliant in 2006.

Thanks again...
 

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You are an absolute STAR!!!! Thank you I have just had a full interior inc fitted cooker, r n r bed and cupboards, and properly fitted table, Two side windows, Water to be on board soon he's an L Plate 1994 1.9 a very early old boy! I am going the camper van route with the DVLA then getting him downgraded for laden weight by the company you have given on your post who were fab I might add speaking to a right blonde thicky (me) ! anyway we are on route for LEZ exemption and if I get it you will be the first to know. Thank you Thank you thank you for the information x
 

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ive just looked at mine and i have an 1 production year on a y plate first reg 27-1-01 its a 1200 lwb 102 acv with a code of oge , tfl says non compliant but from what is above the way i read it i should be, is that right??
 

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i have a 2003 ex aa van which on the logbook states its a diesel car i was going to change the logbook and class as a camper as it is now , but i done a check on tfl and it said it was complient so i might not change its identity after all i think i need to gather more information on this before i do anything so will be keeping an eye on this thread, also i live in london in the lez area
 

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Discussion Starter #9
ive just looked at mine and i have an 1 production year on a y plate first reg 27-1-01 its a 1200 lwb 102 acv with a code of oge , tfl says non compliant but from what is above the way i read it i should be, is that right??
You can write to Transport for London stating the facts and they will amend their database - it is unfortunate that VW themselves have been slow on the uptake...
 
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