A new motorhome manufacturer and it’s LDV (sort of…..)

6 Dec

newshound“Newshound” , Martin, from Scotland , has once more, sent me news of a new motorhome being imported into Australia from China. It’s causing quite a stir, to say the least. Rather like here in the U.K., the campervan and motorhome supply tends to be locally made or converted units made from familiar , home sourced base vehicles. Can the Ozzy converters compete with the might of China?

LDV has a long and somewhat complex history. Originally formed from British Leyland and the Dutch company, DAF., it’s had a mixed family journey. DAF went pop just before the  Russians took it on with the GAZ name but latterly, the Chinese now make the V80 “Maxus” which is used as the base for these motorhomes for Oz.

sherpa-camper-1979sherpa_01

Remember the Sherpa van? This was the forerunner of LDV. Designed as a competitor for the successful Ford Transit, which was made back then in Southampton. (Moved to Turkey now thanks to E.U. subsidy !)

The 60% Daf and 40% Leyland owned company then developed the LDV versions.

ldv-202-proto This prototype LDV became the Renault Master !

renault-master

But the British built Maxus followed on.ldv-maxus-uk

I have driven both Sherpas and Maxus and they handle really well. Built on a low budget, they were surprisingly good. After Daf went feet up, the Russians made these:

ldv-by-gaz Despite a large and growing potential market in Russia, the company failed and ownership passed to China. The LDV Maxus V80 was developed and sold into Ireland and Australia amongst other countries.

ldv-in-irelandldv-by-chinese

Finally, here is one of the Chinese made “V80 based” motorhomes being shipped into Oz.

ldv-v80-motorhome

It will be interesting to see just how sales go. Will we be getting these motorhomes here in the UK? I am sure that there are entrepreneurial types , who will jump at the opportunity to import these , given half a chance. Despite a mixed history, LDV vans have a big following. From Royal Mail drivers to Ambulance drivers, from Builders to members of the Police Service. Not to mention owners of a multitude of campervan conversions based on LDV panel vans. There are already some V80 panel van conversions to be seen on the web.

A big thanks to Martin for breaking the story!

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