Hi from Chamonix!

New to Delica Canada? Please introduce yourself and your van!
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Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2021 3:31 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 2003 3.0i V6 Chamonix
Location: French Alps

Hi from Chamonix!

Post by Blista »

Hi everyone,

After more than 12 months of owning my Delica I guess it's time to introduce it (and myself) in here!
My name's Olivier and I live in the French Alps, not too far from Chamonix (yes, the actual city down by the highest European summit - the Mont Blanc).

I own a white 2003 SWB V6 Delica Chamonix High Roof with 96k. I bought it last year when I was living in the UK, but it was a fresh import - it never drove on those pesky gritty roads so it's super clean underneath.
After almost one year of fighting French administration (importing any car from a market outside EU is a massive PITA) and spending way too much on homologation tests it looks like I'm gonna be able to drive it legally very soon (I was getting away with UK plates until now but local police is getting grumpy with me).

I'm planning to use it for some overlanding/outback/whatever you wanna call it (French word is bivouac, you learn something everyday huh?) in the Alps (Switzerland and Italy are super close, and all of Central Europe is a one day drive), and maybe Morocco sometime in the future if and when borders reopen.
Plan is for it to stay as light as reasonably possible with a well balanced load (for offroad agility and fuel economy) whilst being able to tackle off-road tracks and sleep in comfort wherever I feel like it (including in cold climates).

It's currently full standard (it's another requirement for French administration at the time of import) but I have quite a few mods in the pipe:
- full lift kit is on its way (Dobinsons bars and +50mm coils, Delicagarage suspension correction kit and rear bags, Bilstein B6 dampers/shocks)
- probably some 31/10.5R15 AT tires
- Warn Evo 12S winch
- trying to have a local fabricator make a high clearance metal front bumper with a hidden winch mount
- rear ladder (feeling privileged as I found a Terzo one before departing the UK)
- solar panels and dual battery system
- heater (I'm considering fitting a second hand Webasto from a petrol BMW vehicle)
- E85 conversion (YES we do have E85 in France and it's super cheap, unfortunately it isn't the case anywhere else in Europe)
- I'll store the rear seats and do some kind of conversion in the back, not sure what, we'll see... I already have a fridge for fresh beers so I guess the most important aspect is sorted

Glad to be on this forum and to see all sorts of inspiring builds.
Likewise I'd be super happy to answer any question about my build or about where I live. I realise we have very different markets i.e. to source aftermarket parts, happy to share my experience.
Are there any other Europeans owners on here?
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