DoubleBack adds a sliding pod to VW's Transporter van


February 9, 2012

The DoubleBack is a sliding pod that extends the interior space of the Volkswagen T5 Transporter van

The DoubleBack is a sliding pod that extends the interior space of the Volkswagen T5 Transporter van

Image Gallery (4 images)

It was over thirty years ago that Volkswagen first started offering "pop tops" on its camper vans. In the years since, the soft-sided interior height-extenders have become a common sight on VW vans parked in campgrounds all over the world. Now, Welsh company Overlander Motorhomes is offering what it sees as the logical compliment to the pop top - it's the DoubleBack, a sliding insulated pod that extends the interior length of Volkwagen's T5 Transporter van.

The company starts with a stock 2.0TDI 140PS Long Wheelbase T5 van, then adds its patented DoubleBack pod package. When on the road, the pod stays tucked up inside the back of the vehicle. Once the driver stops and decides they'd like to settle down someplace, however, it electrically extends out of the rear in under 45 seconds, adding approximately two meters (6.5 feet) of useable interior space. Two legs also fold out from the bottom of the pod, which allow it to support up 600 kilograms (1,323 lbs), and to self-level on uneven terrain.

T5 Transporters receiving the DoubleBack treatment also include an elevating roof, a fold-out double bed in the pod itself, a kitchenette, and other home-on-the-road features. It's unclear how the interior of the van is affected when the pod is pulled in, although Overlander claims that one of its converted vans can accommodate either a driver and one passenger in captain's seats, or a driver and two passengers if the bench seat option is selected by the buyer.

If the idea of an extending rear pod sounds at all familiar, that's because Nissan floated the idea on its NV200 concept cargo van, five years ago. The feature never made it through to the production version of the vehicle, however.

The DoubleBack T5 Transporter van is available now, for GBP54,995 (US$86,988). For a look at what else can be done to make a T5 more accommodating, check out the SpaceCamper.

The video below shows the pod in all its sliding glory.

Product page: DoubleBack

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away. All articles by Ben Coxworth

(US$86,988) and you wonder why the 99% stay in tents.

Flipider Comm

You can only transport/store the same amount as normal so What is the point?

Ross Mcewen-Page

the Eurovan stock is almost impossible to lift on a standard hoist and now this mod? sweet idea, and I will pass, this is not coming into my shop for an oil change

Bill Bennett

Cool idea, there are similar idea\'s made out of canvas for vans, hatch backs and trucks....

Richie Suraci

99%? Heck, for that price, I doubt too many so-called one-percenters would be investing in one of those, especially since there are RVs in that class that are not much more expensive, and are a whole lot nicer. But as for me (one of the 53% who pays taxes to support the 47% who don\'t), I think it looks stupid. I\'d rather have one of those tricked-out Sprinter vans.

David Phillips

I think a trailer is a more practical solution.


Now this is great, but costly but with a ramp and my 4wheel ATV all I need now is $100k to get equipped to go fishing, But then I\'ll need the computer, fishfinder, Canoe, trolling motor and, and, and, maybe $50K for taxes, gas, and food..OH WELL maybe next year..


OMG. I want one.

Dennis Caelian

Cool idea half the price and people will actually buy them. The pop top would be nice if it went straight up not on an angle. Make hybrids with solar roofs and regenerative brakes and shocks.


Your blog about Volkswagen transporter is informative. It is really great work. I have got many information from you . Thanks for sharing your experience with us. We like t4 transporter . I have bought Volkswagen transporter . It has high quality driving, good mileage, interior and exterior looks good. We really enjoyed driving this car .

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