Bananavan

Part weekday daily driver, part show-going weekend warrior, this alter-ego Caddy lives up to its superhero title in more ways than one

Meet Bananavan, a very yellow van with a very self-explanatory name. Although this name runs more than just skin deep, for this is a Caddy that leads an exciting double life. ‘It’s my everyday vehicle, so during the week it gets me to work and at weekends it gets me to the VW shows,’ owner Mark Woodhouse tells us.

Okay, so ‘exciting double life’ is probably pushing it, but we had to get a Bananaman reference in there somewhere. Still, you could say this Caddy is… Ever alert for the call to action. Okay, we’ll stop with the Bananaman quotes now.

‘The first show I attended in it was Dubtoberfest, where one of my fellow club members bought me a Bananaman sticker for it. So from that day, it’s been known as Bananavan,’ says Mark, confirming the self-explanatory nature of the Caddy’s name.

Mark’s owned the van for just over two years now, upgrading to the Mk2 Caddy van after a couple of modified Mk1s. ‘When I became time for a change, moving up to a newer model was the thing to do,’ he says. You won’t be surprised to hear what it was that drew his attention to it…

‘After much searching, this one popped up on a local free ads page. What caught my eye was the colour. It stood head and shoulders above your normal, plain colours. A quick phone call and two days later it was mine.’

The van was ripe for further mods as it was standard then except for a set of alloys and the colour change. And you don’t let a Caddy that’s had a respray in Lamborghini Gallardo pearlescent metallic yellow paint run around on some nondescript alloy wheels and a standard ride height, do you…

The 1Form Edition2 rims are a great choice, their simple design perfectly suited to the Caddy’s clean lines and the gloss black finish a perfect contrast to the yellow paint. Getting that stance just right on the 8.5×18 rims are some StancePlus coilovers wound down to their lowest setting, while at the rear are shorter dampers on a flipped rear axle.

With a stance befitting of that Giallo Midas paint, Mark was able to turn his attentions to the inside of the van, bringing it up to a similarly vibrant level as the outside. Seatskinz UK has worked its magic on the front seats, while Mark has added dashes of Lambo yellow and insulated, ply-lined, Veltrim and carpeted the rear compartment.

The result is a far more hospitable and refined interior, which is just as well considering the use this van gets. Not that he actually needs the space it provides. ‘I just like the styling of the Caddy, and especially the Mk2 is so useable because it’s as refined and smooth as anything and drives like a car.’

Looking like it does, we’re certainly not going to argue with his choice of ride.

VDub Details

Engine: standard except for rear-box delete with oblong chrome tip done by Infinity Exhausts

Chassis: StancePlus coilovers and adjustable drop links on the front; flipped axle and short shocks on the rear; 1Form Edition2 8.5×18 rims with 225/40/R18 Maxxis

Body: full inside-and-outside respray in Lamborghini Gallardo Giallo Midas pearlescent metallic yellow; roof, rear spoiler and details finished in black with a fine rainbow metal flake; tinted windows, headlights and taillights, smoked side repeaters, smoked high-level rear brake light

Interior: seats recovered, centre dash panel colour-matched to body; rear compartment insulated, ply-lined and covered in black Veltrim; black carpet, red lights in the roof, custom Bananavan storage box, two custom graffiti metal signs; Kenwood touchscreen DAB/CD/DVD head unit, Pioneer under-seat sub/amp, Hertz component speakers and separate Hertz amp

Companies

Exhaust: Infinity Exhausts
Seats: Seatskinz UK (Wigan) 
Tinting: Top Tints (Gloucester) 
Mechanicals: Avonside Motors (Evesham) 
Wheels: Rimstyle (Kent) 
Entertainment: Ultimate Audio Four Master (Bromsgrove)