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Old 09-05-2020, 10:10 PM   #1
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Question Need advice

Hello, I am wanting to buy a pop up fully camperized van....or buy a suitable van and have it custom camperized. I live in Alberta, Canada and I can't find any companies in Alberta that do what I want done. I found some businesses in the States that do what I want done, but they tell me that if they arrange for me to purchase a van and camperize it for me, I won't be able to get it into Canada and get it registered here. Places such as Peace Vans in Washington and Sportsmobile in Texas, Illinois and California talk about not being licensed to sell to Canadians but they are vague about whether there are American companies that I could deal with to buy the van I want. Some of the options I have been looking at are the 5Mars Illusion (which is done by a company in Quebec that won't seem to get back to me) and the Mercedes-Benz Metris with a pop top and full camper package installed. I'm looking for a garageable, pop top van that can have a full galley kitchen, a bed for one person and a porta potty (at the very least) installed. It doesn't seem like such an impossible thing to find. Any advice? Does anyone know if any American companies can at least do customizations for Canadians so the USA government will let them bring the van back to Canada and register it here?
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Old 09-05-2020, 11:13 PM   #2
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What about Safari Condo?
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Old 09-05-2020, 11:49 PM   #3
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Default Looked at the Safari Condo site

I looked at the Safari Condo site but the Mercedes Sprinter that they use is too tall to be garageable. Very nice vans, but I really want something I can use as my every day driver as well so I want a pop top regular height van. Thanks for the suggestion though.
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Old 09-06-2020, 12:34 AM   #4
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Is converted Metris available in Canada? It is about the same size as old VW Westfalias.
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:37 AM   #5
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Default Haven't found anybody in Canada that converts the Metris

I haven't found anybody in Canada that converts the Mercedes Benz Metris to a full camper. I have found some companies in the US that do so, but the only companies in the US that do conversions I can import to Canada only work with vans too tall to put in my garage. Nobody seems to do pop tops on the Metris or similar vans. That's why I was hoping someone on the forum knew something I haven't been able to find yet. I may be looking for the impossible.
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Old 09-06-2020, 01:52 AM   #6
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safari condo also does the short promaster


https://safaricondo.com/en/motorises...master-m18-mx/
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Old 09-06-2020, 02:25 AM   #7
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Default Short Promaster is not short height wise

I need a van that measures about 81 inches high when the pop top is closed. The Promaster is too tall. Thanks anyway.
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Old 09-06-2020, 03:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mghuff View Post
Hello, I am wanting to buy a pop up fully camperized van....or buy a suitable van and have it custom camperized. I live in Alberta, Canada and I can't find any companies in Alberta that do what I want done. I found some businesses in the States that do what I want done, but they tell me that if they arrange for me to purchase a van and camperize it for me, I won't be able to get it into Canada and get it registered here. Places such as Peace Vans in Washington and Sportsmobile in Texas, Illinois and California talk about not being licensed to sell to Canadians but they are vague about whether there are American companies that I could deal with to buy the van I want. Some of the options I have been looking at are the 5Mars Illusion (which is done by a company in Quebec that won't seem to get back to me) and the Mercedes-Benz Metris with a pop top and full camper package installed. I'm looking for a garageable, pop top van that can have a full galley kitchen, a bed for one person and a porta potty (at the very least) installed. It doesn't seem like such an impossible thing to find. Any advice? Does anyone know if any American
companies can at least do customizations for Canadians so the USA government will let them bring the van back to Canada and register it here?
Seems to me all you need to do is buy a Canadian compliant vehicle in Canada, license it, drive it to a US upfitter of your choice and drive it home when complete.
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Old 09-06-2020, 03:08 AM   #9
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I need a van that measures about 81 inches high when the pop top is closed. The Promaster is too tall. Thanks anyway.
safari condo will do a GM van if you bring it to them. they don't offer pictures and models anymore because of difficulty getting them but it's still listed on brochures.

also i think they will do any model van if you inquire
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Old 09-06-2020, 04:18 AM   #10
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Seems to me all you need to do is buy a Canadian compliant vehicle in Canada, license it, drive it to a US upfitter of your choice and drive it home when complete.

You may be right, although no American firms have volunteered that yet. Covid 19 may be holding them back from offering to convert a van I bring to them. I may be able to arrange that when the world opens up. Thanks.
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Old 09-06-2020, 04:20 AM   #11
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safari condo will do a GM van if you bring it to them. they don't offer pictures and models anymore because of difficulty getting them but it's still listed on brochures.

also i think they will do any model van if you inquire
Thanks, I will check that out. I know Covid 19 is holding up everything but I keep trying to get things arranged so I can move ahead with getting the van I want as soon as things open up. Thank you for your advice.
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Old 09-06-2020, 03:01 PM   #12
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You may be right, although no American firms have volunteered that yet. Covid 19 may be holding them back from offering to convert a van I bring to them. I may be able to arrange that when the world opens up. Thanks.
it;s not up to the converters to get it across-it's up to you.
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Old 09-06-2020, 03:48 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mghuff View Post
Hello, I am wanting to buy a pop up fully camperized van....or buy a suitable van and have it custom camperized. I live in Alberta, Canada and I can't find any companies in Alberta that do what I want done. I found some businesses in the States that do what I want done, but they tell me that if they arrange for me to purchase a van and camperize it for me, I won't be able to get it into Canada and get it registered here. Places such as Peace Vans in Washington and Sportsmobile in Texas, Illinois and California talk about not being licensed to sell to Canadians but they are vague about whether there are American companies that I could deal with to buy the van I want. Some of the options I have been looking at are the 5Mars Illusion (which is done by a company in Quebec that won't seem to get back to me) and the Mercedes-Benz Metris with a pop top and full camper package installed. I'm looking for a garageable, pop top van that can have a full galley kitchen, a bed for one person and a porta potty (at the very least) installed. It doesn't seem like such an impossible thing to find. Any advice? Does anyone know if any American companies can at least do customizations for Canadians so the USA government will let them bring the van back to Canada and register it here?
We are having a company in Prince Albert called Paved to Pines build out our Promaster. Not exactly Alberta, but at least you're in Canada. They show up as a skoolie company, but they will convert most anything. When we were at their shop in March they had a mini van in their garage that they were in the process of converting to a camper. It wasn't exactly a pop-up where you access the sleeping area from inside, but it had an automated tent mounted on the roof that would pop up for outside access. The back was fitted with a kitchen and sleeping area. They're pretty busy, but give them a call. If they can't do it, they may be able to recommend someone.

I think it would be a heck of a lot easier on you if you bought a vehicle in Canada that meets all Canadian rules and regulations and not have to deal with all the import regulations and taxes that will be imposed if you buy a US vehicle.
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Old 09-10-2020, 05:33 PM   #14
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Don't know if you have considered the Pleasureway Tofino model as it may meet your height and use requirements.. If not see the specs here:

https://pleasureway.com/models/tofino/
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Old 09-10-2020, 06:14 PM   #15
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I bought a 2013 used Roadtrek Agile SS for a great price in Edmonton, Alberta on 2016. I live in Seattle. I spent several phone calls with the US Border offices and time online finding out about what I needed to do to get the Van back into the US. One thing was the engine had To have a stamp approval it complies with US EPA. I had to pay a GTS fee to Canada and them register in Seattle
And pay the sales tax for Seattle. I would check with the Canadian border to see their requirements.
Good Luck!
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Old 09-10-2020, 10:09 PM   #16
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We just purchased a Solis Winnebago 59P. It has a pop top and is designed after the VW Westfalia. Your near a dealer in Iowa called Lichtsinn RV. They carry the Solis and on their web site they even have all the information for Canadian Friends! On You Tube they have the Class B Solis Winnebago. I think you will really like it. Your worried about the size in height and length, I honestly think you will love it as much as we do. We don't get our until mid November they are very popular. Best of Everything!
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Old 09-10-2020, 10:25 PM   #17
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We just purchased a Solis Winnebago 59P. It has a pop top and is designed after the VW Westfalia. Your near a dealer in Iowa called Lichtsinn RV. They carry the Solis and on their web site they even have all the information for Canadian Friends! On You Tube they have the Class B Solis Winnebago. I think you will really like it. Your worried about the size in height and length, I honestly think you will love it as much as we do. We don't get our until mid November they are very popular. Best of Everything!
Congrats on your Solis!
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