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They've been killing me at work. I haven't had time to do any crazy projects!

I don't like my crew cab or tracker.

I've put 20-30k miles on a dodge grand caravan. Those things are nice.

So, what I want is a 1 ton dodge grand caravan. Take a 1 ton pickup, lower it, and put a minivan body on top. Junk would be high enough as it is without stacking a unibody on top. 2wd high mileage minivans are worthless in Alaska, so I should be able to pick one up with a perfect body for $600 or so.

I tried to find examples of a mini van like this, but I couldn't. Anyone know of one?

At first I wanted a minivan with toyota axles and a VW engine. But a nice VW engine will run me ~$3k. Seems like I should be able to pick up a wrecked truck for that price. Then I don't have to worry about all the little parts that add up to another $3k...

So the idea now is 1 ton running gear with a powerstroke or cummins.

The 3.8L V6 in the minivan I drive does 1500RPM at 55mph. I figure the diesel should be fine idling around in overdrive... 1000RPM at 55? But then I have to figure out how to get a second gear range for off road or trailer towing. Raise 55mph up to 1700RPM or so.

I was told that engine size didn't matter at some point, that the power stroke or cummins should be roughly comparable in MPG to a small VW...just with more power waiting to come out. You have to admit a 7.3L minivan with a 4" straight pipe would turn heads...

Any ideas? I'd like to get ~40MPG+ with a stage 1 kit. Should this be a sleeper tow rig or off road rig? it looks like it would be hard to clearance for a 35 up front. I have a magazine article where some guy put a 2.2L Isuzu turbo in a minivan. He hooked it to the stock automatic and gets 34-36mpg. I get about 20 in my F350, but its also a brick. Maybe the curves of a caravan will be better?

I don't see it working without a big dog house... Just dreaming here... :grinpimp:
 

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you will NOT get 40mpg with a large diesel (one ton truck) engine in any car or truck. you have a chance with a 1.9L or 2L VW motor, but that is not likely on a larger vehicle either as they only get about 45-50 in their respective cars with normal driving.

sounds like a cool build, just not sure that you are going to be able to do what you want and get that kind of mileage..
 
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