We’ve all seen the lengths that the youth of today will go to pimp their ride. For the boy racers, it is almost expected that they boost their suspension, tinker about under the hood, spend their benefit on a spray-job and tint their windscreens for the total blackout look as they drive past incognito with booming speakers setting of car alarms aplenty.
What you don’t expect is for two renowned brand names like Mercedes Benz and Pioneer to take a van and live out this boyhood fantasy by spending £25k souping it up – and that’s just the sound system – to a level that would have boy racers drooling into their designer beer.
Like something out of The Man From UNCLE or Knight Rider, the joint mission has been nicknamed Project-X and the van certainly lives up to KITT’s specifications.
Unlike the Trans Am in the TV show, more like the Bionic Van, this creation started out as Mercedes Vito, but everything has been upgraded it seems, except the shell itself.
Not that you’ll be able to buy one of these vas from any showroom – this is a one-off model that showcases the extremes that Pioneer and Mercedes can go to, as well as Brabus, another German outfit who have super-tuned the engine which would just blow any governor you tried to impose on it to smithereens.
The engine is a monster – it would be interesting to see what type of van insurance quote you’d get by entering these details into an online search facility; not cheap, that’s for sure.
The engine boasts a turbo V6 diesel output with a 3.0 litre cubic capacity. For a not-so aerodynamic design, this van can do 0-60 in just over 8 seconds. Combined with 224 brake horsepower, the unit delivers a top speed of 122 mph when pushed to the limit.
The Pioneer kit installed has a combined output of over 30kW, derived from 8 amps (that take 4 batteries to suppport) two sets of 15″ and 10″ sub-woofers and a graphic equaliser that would make KITT’s dash seem dull, in comparison.
There are no plans to make this into a production model, so you won’t be finding a section in your online van insurance form for super-subbed vehicles. But you will be able to see it around the shows and they are planning to let it loose on the roads.
There are, however, many people who do modernise their vans, especially transits done up to A-Team standards and camper-vans that become permanent homes for many people who have took to the road.
Whatever you choose to do to your van, even the little extras to your works van to make it your own, make sure your company’s fleet van insurance covers those little modifications. As B.A. would say, “Stop talkin’ this jibberjabber and get yo crazy van-ass covered, fool!”