Nick HardingSee other motorhome reviews written by Nick Harding
Looking for VW campervans for sale? Read our expert's verdict on the 2016 Danbury Surf, a good-value elevating-roof camper based on the Volkswagen T6 SWB
The Danbury name goes nearly all the way back to the first generation of VW campervan makers here in the UK. The name of the subsequently defunct company was bought up and the people behind the current incarnation set about re-making its name by importing and converting VW T2 Transporters from Brazil.
Danbury’s manufacturing and retailing premises at Yate, near Bristol, represents something of a VW campervan heaven. You’ll see absolutely loads of campers of all ages here – mainly Danbury campers, of course, but pre-owned models from quite a few other Volkswagen camper specialist marques, too, going back over the years.
And, although it’s easy to be wowed by the Grape Yellow paintwork, note that the bumpers and mirrors are left in their original black finish, and the basic steel wheels are preferred.
Is any of this a deal-breaker, though? Here’s an all-new five-seater campervan that sleeps two people as standard. For an extra £599, you can have upper-level bed boards to make this into a four-berth for sleeping. That’s something that can be fitted at any time, so if you’re not sure initially, you can always hold back.
In the meantime, the extra standing room this gives you when it’s up – and it’s an easy action to raise and lower – is bonus enough.
Danbury is another converter that goes its own way with its own elevating roof and rear seat designs – for the latter, though, we do feel there’s a potential hazard with the possibility of catching your hand in the folding mechanism.
On the road
Cab air conditioning and rear parking sensors are the only options fitted to our test camper, putting the price up to £40,200.
You can choose whether to have two cab seats or a three-seater bench front seat and you can add a DSG automatic gearbox if you wish.
Lounging & dining
Its shape allows for a triangular sink, and there are some neat storage points, plus the cooker is a two-ring-plus grill LP Talisman unit. There’s also a nifty slide-out section just above the fridge that’s always going to be a handy ledge – whether for placing cuppas or when it comes to full meal preparations when you need any work surface you can get.
Options fitted to our test unit comprised rear parking sensors (£245) and cab air conditioning (£960). Surf buyers can choose from the full complement of engine outputs (84, 102, 150 or 180 bhp, with 204 bhp available as a special order), as well as option packs and individual options. This also includes a choice of upholsteries.
|Layout||Camper without washroom|
|Leisure battery||135 Ah|
|Gas bottle size||7kg|
|Number of gas bottles||1|
Waeco Compressor Fridge, 2-burner gas hob, Separate grill
Although this is quite a basic VW campervan specification and features some rudimentary conversion work, the 2016 VW T6-based Danbury Surf is on sale for a low price, and it packs a grill as standard kit. Danbury is the emerging force in VW campers in the UK and does things its own way. It seems to have found a niche that it’s happy to keep growing.
- Good value for money
- Plenty of options available
- Choice of upholstery designs
- Choice of engines
- Fairly basic conversion work
- No toilet or washroom