Visiting the 1st Camp Nation Expo in Hollister, CA I saw 3 sharp looking Ford Transit camper vans half-encircling an exhibit area, so I decided to take a closer look. I’ve seen many Mercedes Sprinter camper conversions, but this was my first time getting up close and personal to the new all-wheel drive Ford Transit vans. With the the pop-up tops on these vans and the impressive custom camper interiors, I definitely wanted to get the details.
Luckily, PJ Tezza, CEO of ModVans was on-hand and gave me a very detailed tour of their 3 models on display, the CV1, CV1/M and MH1, offered in both all-wheel drive and 2wd Ford Transit models, though PJ states, “almost everybody gets all-wheel drive and the twin turbo EcoBoost engine.” I was told these models are also offered in an X edition, with larger capacity batteries onboard. As you’ll read below, there’s an impressive amount of power storage in these campervans, as well as solar power recharging them.
PJ explained the naming conventions were very simple, with CV standing for “Camper Van” and MH standing for “Motor Home”. PJ mentions that ModVans are meant to be a crossover between an RV and an SUV with seating up to 7 people.
“ModVans” as the name implies represents one of their hallmark features: modular interior design. The interiors of the vans are completely customizable. Components can be changed around or even removed if needed, to add more space for things like runs to the local hardware store. I really liked how the main electronic display panels and switches are intelligently incorporated into a single control panel, centralizing them to enable the camper van modular layouts and creating a single place to access all your main controls.
Another main feature of ModVans is the pop-up roof, adding a space for a queen sized bed, giving you more interior floor space for other camping essentials, and a second bed, so you can family size your van.
CV1 Low Roof Ford Transit Adventure Van
The ModVans CV1 on display is based on an all-wheel drive Ford Transit’s 20ft van with the low roof design, outfitted towards the adventure van concept.
CV1 Camper Van Exterior
We started our tour around the exterior of the CV1. Quite noticeable on the front of the van is the Backwoods Adventure Mods front bumper, outfitted with integrated LED light bar and a 12,000 lb. Warn winch with a synthetic line. This CV1 has a lift kit and larger tires, giving it about 4 inches total lift. I noticed the tires are BF Goodrich KO2 and the nice looking rims are manufactured by Hostile Wheels. ModVans added AMP Research retractable power steps to compensate for the lift and make getting in/out of the van easier.
As this CV1 adventure van, chances are you’d be doing a bit of offroading, so ModVans incorporated onboard dual air compressors with an air hose connector outlet on each side of the van, for convenient airing up of tires as needed.
In the rear of the van, the CV1 is outfitted with Backwood Adventure Mods rear bumper for the Ford Transit, which retains all the factory tow package equipment and incorporates LED lights for visibility backing up at nighttime. Also visible with the rear doors open, is ModVans outdoor shower and portable cassette toilet at the rear of the interior. There’s a couple curtains in the rear for privacy of the outdoor shower (which also comes with a shower pan to stand in) and also the rear cassette toilet (which can be used with the rear door closed.
There’s a beefy rear ladder up to the roof on the rear driver’s side door, with a spare tire mounted. The secure ladder leads up to roof racks where you can store things like surfboards or other gear, over 100 lbs of cargo.
On the driver’s side is the other air compressor outlet mentioned previously, and well as a 30 amp shore power outlet which is supplied on all ModVans.
Of course, the van has a legless awning with an LED light bar as well that has a sensor to retract the awning automatically in case winds pick up.
CV1 Camper Interior
Moving onto the interior, PJ pointed out how their camper van conversion is completely modular, including the cabinets, water tanks, the lower bed and even the seats and tables. As he mentioned, they can all come out so the Transit van can be used for multiple purposes if needed, like moving furniture or some sort of work moving large items, etc. He pointed out bolt patterns on the floor, where up to a whopping 7 seats can be added to any other their vehicles if desired, matching the number of seats you might need to your adventure. All seats arm rests, 3 point seat belts, child attachments, recline and are upholstered in really nice leather embroidered with the Modvans logo. This particular camper van incorporated one Lagun table, but you can get up to 3 in your setup if desired.
Moving onto the cabinets of the CV1, they are outfitted with a microwave and a 3 cu. ft, 12V compressor driven fridge. This particular model displayed is of their non “X-series”, so it contained a nice propane system for a stainless double burner stove and a deep, rectangular stainless steel sink/faucet setup.
All ModVans come with 2 beds. Downstairs, panel cushions extend across the cabinets to give a 6’4″ bed on the CV1. The upper bed is 6’6″ x 4′ which is considered the primary bed. It’s also based on cushion panels. It’s incredibly spacious inside and no head room issues with the upper bed panels stacked, giving you about 7 and a half feet from floor to ceiling.
PJ mentioned people commonly ask about warmth in the van. Along with a powerful furnace, insulation covers are included for the windows. PJ mentioned a number of customers report camping at zero degrees very comfortable with no issues. ModVans also utilize 12V roof air conditioners.
12 Volt power is supplied in the non “X-series” by 150 amps of power (can be upgraded), a 3,000 Watt inverter and 500 Watts/solar on the roof.
ModVans MH1 High Roof Ford Transit Camper Van
Just looking at the 3 ModVans models on display, it was clear the MH1 is their premiere camper van conversion. As PJ states, “this one is more like an apartment inside, whereas the others are more of a camping feel”. The MH1 is based on Ford Transit’s high roof, extended chassis model. At 22 feet, it’s 2 feet longer than the mid-roof CV1/M and loof roof CV1 models. The high roof design allows you to stand up fully inside without popping the top up. It’s much more roomy inside.
X-Series High Tech Camper Van
This particular model on display is part of ModVans “X-Series” which is their high technology upgrade. PJ mentions they offer the biggest battery in any RV that they know of, where the whole floor is a 1 inch layer of batteries offering 2,000 amp/hours of power storage. With a 580 solar panel on the roof, and the ability to plug in a 430 Watt fold-out solar panel on the side of the van, you get a bit over 1,000W total solar power charging.
Some of this X-Series functionality can actually be controlled via an app, either by bluetooth or internet. Things controlled by the app include the pop up top, awning, lighting throughout and even an expandable full bathroom, all of which you can see in the video included in this article.
The van even incorporates in-motion Starlink for internet access, up to 100mb.
In the rear of the MH1 camper van is a large swing-out storage box, with the option of a smaller version to keep visibility out the passenger rear door window. There’s also a large storage area in the rear called the “garage” that is large enough to store a bike. There’s also an outdoor shower, and you can see the 51 gallons of freshwater storage.
On the interior, the walls are pushed out 6 inches which gives a lot more usable space like deeper cabinets and countertops, and larger beds. With the added power of the X-series, this camper van incorporates an induction stove, a multi-function oven (microwave, convection, air fryer, toaster oven and more). Also included is a 3.5 cu ft. 12V compressor fridge.
The coolest feature is the pop-up, semi-dry bathroom. When not in use, the top comes down to act as a counter, However with a button push of the app, the cabinet roof raises to the ceiling to 6’3″ and you have a full bathroom with sink, toilet and a shower. The toilet slides out the rear of the bathroom when you want to take a shower. The key benefit for this pop-up bathroom is retaining a huge amount of room on the interior of the van, otherwise occupied by a conventional bathroom.
ModVans CV1/M Medium Roof Camper Van
This particular model on display was based on a two-wheel drive version of the Ford Transit and outfitted with the full 7 seat capacity (3 rows) that ModVans offers. Again, it’s a modular design so things can be rearranged as needed.
The bed was set up downstairs for display, and this model incorporated a smaller sink countertop, called their “slim kitchen” to accommodate the seating and made for people who like to cook outside. A couple Lagun tables were incorporated into this model layout. To get a clearer picture, I’d recommend watching the accompanying video.