We often see customised vehicles from Abt Sportsline, but this time it's different. The German-based company directly acknowledges that the vehicle here is a proper debut, something never before done in its 125-year history. This is the Abt XNH, a legit Volkswagen camper van with a pop-up roof, a kitchen, and yes, a body kit.
The XNH (which stands for Explore New Horizons) uses VW's popular T6.1 as a starting point. On the outside, it's business as usual at Abt with a body kit that adds side skirts, a lower lip to the front and rear fascias, and snazzy Abt black spoke wheels with Goodyear Eagle F1 tyres at the corners. There's also an Abt grille, behind which sits a stock Volkswagen diesel engine churning out 148 bhp. This is, after all, a camper as opposed to a race van.
Gallery: ABT XNH Volkswagen T6.1 Camper Van
Abt turns to partners for some assistance with the camping upfit. Vaning GmbH designed the interior, using a combination of scratch-resistant materials and wood panels. Keeping weight down was a primary concern, which led to the use of lightweight GRP moldings created specifically for this van. Sheep's wool and other recycled materials are used for insulation, giving the XNH some all-season comfort for campers.
Speaking of which, what kind of gear does an Abt-tweaked VW camper bring to the vanlife scene? There's a modest kitchen with a two-burner induction stove, sink, and refrigerator. A pull-out table extends at the front, separating the front seats and the living area. A three-person bench seat at the back folds down to a bed. Posh cabinets and storage spaces line the sides, and when the weather is nice, a second kitchen with a gas stove mounted on slides extends from the back. On-board lithium batteries provide power, though Abt doesn't offer details on capacity.
Abt will show two versions of the XNH at f.re.e. – the largest travel and leisure show in Bavaria – starting February 22. 500 are planned for production beginning in May, with VW Group Services in Hanover, Germany handling the assembly. As the T6 is a European-spec van, there are no plans to offer the XNH in North America.