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BangShift Question Of The Day: What Kind Of Hot-Rodded Van Would Work For You?

BangShift Question Of The Day: What Kind Of Hot-Rodded Van Would Work For You?

Here’s an interesting question that I’m curious to hear the answer to. Vans are an interesting thing in our world: you either see them as a canvas or you see them as a mobile shed, nothing more. I don’t see any in-betweens. You either have dreams that are filled with small-block Astros and wicked Dodge Tradesmans or you don’t. I tend to fall into the second category myself…I can’t knock a good custom van when I see one and the idea a rolling apartment for traveling across the country does have a big appeal, but in reality I do not fit happily into most vans. I just don’t. Chevrolet Savana, Dodge B-series, Ford Aerostar…none of them are comfortable for any longer than maybe an hour at the most to me. The wheelwell that my left foot rests on is the killer. But every now and then I’ll come across something like a four-speed Dodge van and I just sit there picturing ’70s slot mags and white letter tires, a barking exhaust, and a kitted out area behind the seats that would make for a nice retreat. Bark gears during the day, then park and go crash out in the back.

But do you need a full-size van? Check out this Carfection video and the Ford Transits that Alex is showing off…especially the two later-model units that have had some nice upgrades courtesy of the hotter Ford Focus models. I’d be all about a small Transit Connect with a Focus ST swap…small and spacious, and fun enough that you wouldn’t be bored behind the wheel. What kind of van would you genuinely consider doing up?

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9 thoughts on “BangShift Question Of The Day: What Kind Of Hot-Rodded Van Would Work For You?

  1. Chevy Hatin' Mad Geordie

    That’s a no-brainer – a Mk 1 Transit with the Coyote motor gear box and suspension from a Ford Mustang!

  2. Shawn Fox Firth

    Corvair Greenbriar with a mid mounted LSX using a Dobbertin Performance Innovations Corvette suspension adapter . Then I’d go hunting for Mk 1 Transits . ..

  3. tigeraid

    I grew up with vans, my dad being a “van guy,” with the bed in the back and all that stupid stuff. So I have an unnatural revulsion to full-size vans.

    I think if I were to ever build one at all, it would either have to be an old A100 or whatever…. But I’ve always liked the idea of v8-swap Astros.

  4. KCR

    Dodge a-100 .Setting on a 4×4 Darango frame.not stupid lifted. Just stout so you can still use it to tow. Vans make the best tow Vehicles.

  5. Piston Pete

    I love vans and was in the midst of a hot 4.3l V-6 build for my 02 Astro when, over the course of 8 months, a local Indy machine shop screwed the entire project into the ground. It was supposed to be 300 hp and 320 torque and I’d already installed a B+M 4L60E with a new convertor and balanced driveshaft, plus the nicest stereo I’d ever had in a vehicle. Now I still have the credit card payment and can’t stand to look at an Astro, especially a nice one. But I still love vans and hope to acquire an LS powered full size in the near future.

  6. BennyB

    This line of thought made me wonder if anyone had ever made a van from an FC Willys. Because that would be my van.

  7. BeaverMartin

    SO many! a sweet A100 of course. A LS Astro. One of those Russian 4 wheel drive UAZ vans with Unimog portal axles and a 4BT. A turboed Bismoto style Honda Odyssey. Heck I thought someone should make a spec minivan road racing series for all of us dads once the kids leave the nest and all we have to show is a beat up minivan, and tons of college tuition to pay. Call it the NASA American Family race series.

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