BOV, Part II

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pengyou

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This is kind of a whimsical idea. Still thinking about a used cube van...what about putting the engine in the middle of the van, maybe behind two rows of seats? Then the transmission and a 3 ft drive shaft to the rear axle. I have already thought through the issue of having an engine in the back of the van - ways to actually put its presence to good use. The result: would have an engine that is much easier to work on - exhaust could easily be directed up the back to the top of the vehicle; intake could also be from the top of the vehicle; 4 wheel drive could be relatively "easy" to install (if the engine were not in the front :p to get in the way). I could easily think of 500 pounds of stuff that I would like to keep in the van that could be stored in the new trunk up front, that would help balance the weight. The mechanical aspect would be a challenge...but the space created and utility provided would be ideal. The front end on the van would probably last longer if it were lightened by 500 pounds. I think that prompted this idea is that a lot of medium weight vans and trucks I see overseas are rear engine driven. Almost all utility vehicles here have the snub nose type because of the narrow streets and difficulty finding long spaces to part the longer nosed trucks and vans. There are some snub nosed school busses that are rear engine...that might be the cheapest way to do this, but would probably be 4' or so longer than I would want....of course, there is the.... VW Van, but the 1996-98 VW van was front engine, and I would like something from around 1998, because they started putting front air bags at that time.
 
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DrHenley

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Like you say there are already rear engine buses, so that would be more practical to my way of thinking. Building one with a mid engine seems like it would be out of reach for most people technically. Unless of course you just happen to have a whole team of automotive engineers sitting around twiddling their thumbs looking for something to do, LOL.

Of course if you have plenty of money, just buy a mid engine sports car and take the body off and build it on that, LOL. You no longer need to plop down a half million $$$ for a Lamborghini to get a mid engine because the new Corvette has a mid engine and it's only $60K.
 

pengyou

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Rear engine buses...or any buses...are not very agile once they leave the pavement...even on a smooth dirt road. Even though vans are still not so graceful, they have a lot of tire and suspension options.
 
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DrHenley

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Nimble no, but having the engine over the drive wheels gets you better traction. The WWII German "Jeep", the Kübelwagen was rear engine with a limited slip differential and didn't need 4WD. The VW "Thing" was a civilian version of the Kübelwagen but much uglier, LOL and useless offroad.

I think if they had made the "Thing" just like the Kübelwagen it would have been a success. Hell, I would have bought one.

 

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