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T4 vs T5 opinions

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marksabs View Drop Down
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    Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 11:57
As someone who's never even driven a T4 I've got no knowledge of them. I bet there are a fair few members here who have owned both so does anyone have any opinions on the following:

how they drive
fuel consumption
reliability
repair costs
are they easier to fix yourself
do they have their own set of design problems (water pump, DMF etc)

The reason I ask is that money is a bit tight at the moment (2 small kids and trying to build an extension) and I've spotted a fully converted (Reimo) T4 camper with only 54k on the clock for 11 grand. In theory I could sell my beloved T5 and pocket a few grand. If servicing and repair is significantly cheaper that would save me more in the long term. But then if it drives anything like my old Transhite then I'll stick with T5.

all opinions welcome
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote traversd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 13:35
Might depend on which engine is in the T4 ? Never driven the T5...peeps on here say the 2.5TDi is the only option to get near 'car' style of driving....and I would guess closest to the T5..

Mine is 1.9Td and goes well enough for what I want if a little revvy....

No chance of taking the beast out for a test drive and compare ?


Edited by traversd - 25 Nov 09 at 13:50
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jimbo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 13:43
do you think your going to be gunning a camper?  most of the camper peeps i know drive slow and enjoy the scenery, and go for the larger engine for the extra power to make up for extra weight.  i spose the T4 is slowly going to become more desireable as its an older model as the T2/3s start disappearing.  could be an investment.....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cjm_2008 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 13:50
I wish I'd gone for a 2.5 LWB t4. they're pretty bulletproof on the whole.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tony M Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 18:27
I had a 1998 T4 2.5 TDi 102hp before my Sportline.  It was serviced every 6-8k relatively cheaply by an independent VW specialist. Fuel consumption was circa 40mpg and it had plenty of go. I'd have another one without hesitation, if my circumstances changed.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Transporter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 18:47
I used to run a T4 with a 1.9TD engine. I wouldn't hesitate to have another T4 but perhaps with a 2.5 engine... They are really nice to drive and beats the T5 hands down for reliabillity. I used to get 30mpg from mine but it was always pretty heavilly loaded and to make progress in the 1.9, it had to be driven pretty hard... I miss it every time my T5 has another issue
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote marksabs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 20:46
Cheers for all the responses. Interesting outcome so far - I'm glad I posted the question.

Certainly no negative vibes on the t4's then. Sounds like the 2.5 is the one to go for. 

On the one hand I still want to keep mine as I've owned it almost from new (ex demo with 23 miles on the clock) and it hasn't gone wrong once, though it's only done 25k. On the other hand sounds like the DMF and water pump will probably go. It's also one of the earliest models which I'm a bit concerned about from reading other posts.

Not sure how much I'd save either. It's a bottom of the range t28 85ps panel van that I picked up for 12.5 grand (I think new price would have been about 15 grand). I've had reimo bed,poptop, windows fitted to a cost of about 9 grand - so I've spent a total of just over 22 grand. I'm hoping it's worth at least 15 private (haven't checked) so might only be looking at saving about 3 to 5 grand if I traded for an 11 grand t4 - you know what traders are like. So really I'd be trading in for a slightly more finished conversion and hopefully better reliability - though mine's practically been wrapped in cotton wool, compared with unknown history.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Loon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 21:00
Since it's a 1.9 it'll be bullet proof. No waterpump issues here. Reliability wise, you still have to change the clutch on a T4 at some point. If it was me I'd stick with the van you already own. You might end up saving a few quid, but how do you know you won't have to spent that money on the replacement van you want. It could end up being a complete plug of thing. T4's - on the whole generally perceived as having better reliability but the there are some T5's that have not had a spanner near them.

Edited by The Loon - 26 Nov 09 at 02:01
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ex-car bloke Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Nov 09 at 23:20
I agree with the Loon, mate - keep it I'd say.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote marksabs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Nov 09 at 08:42
Yeah I think you're right  EXB and the Loon. The t4's do sound bullet proof but I'm probably better sticking with what I've got now that I've spent so much time and money on it. From past experience it normally works out cheaper to stick with what you've got.

I wasn't aware that the pumps were ok on the 1.9 - that's good to know Smile

cheers for all your responses!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gregozedobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Nov 09 at 21:27
I say keep it too.  If you haven't had any trouble so far your T5 obviously isn't a "lemon", and there is no guarantee you won't have trouble with an older T4 once you buy it - and how would you feel then ?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VWlewis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Nov 09 at 21:44
We had a T4 Caravelle with the really slow 2.4 D engine ... so not much fun to drive - just steady and "did what it said on the tin".   We then had a 2.5 130 bhp TDi T5 Shuttle - excellent and lots of fun.  No idea of costs of running as we had it for an 18 month lease only but it ran very well for the 18,000 miles we used it.
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