If you need a little more mountain-climbing capability from your van, this mob is keen to sell you just such a package
- shares

Torsus, a Slovakia-based Off-road Bus company, has released the Crafter-based Terrastorm 4X4 bus. It's adding a specialist off-road edge to the Volkswagen Crafter, and it wants to come to Australia.

Based on the Volkswagen Crafter 4Motion, the Torsus Terrastorm adds in some special engineering to increase off-road ability. The Terrastorm comes in a few different body styles, and can carry up to 19 people when configured as a bus.

The Terrastrom join the larger Torsus Praetorian, which is capable of carrying up to 37 people across rough conditions, and is available in a wide variety of different configurations.

Priced from AUD$93,900, representatives from Torsus tell us that Australia is in their sights for the Terrastorm, seeing our large mining industry and active off-road motorhome scene both having ample opportunity for the brand.

Like the Crafter, the Terrastorm ha a 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine under the bonnet, making either 103kW/340Nm or 130kW/410Nm. This runs through either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission.

The 4X4 system stays the same as a Volkswagen Crafter 4Motion, using a Haldex-based clutch pack at the rear differential to provide drive to all four wheels. That means the Terrastorm goes without a low-range transfer case.

Increased off-road ability comes via new suspension, which increases the ride height for additional ground clearance (Torsus quotes 290mm). Bilstein B6 dampers are used in the front, and ProFender Dakar dampers (with remote reservoirs) are employed in the back.

This European 4X4 bus also has some Australian flavour under the skin. Melbourne-based 4X4 accessory and suspension company Ironman 4X4 has supplied its Load Plus helper springs for the rear, along with camber bolts up-front.

A Torsus bumper improves ground clearance and adds in winch compatibility, and a factory-fitted locking rear differential gives some additional traction off-road. 5mm aluminium bash plates protect the underbody vitals, and a 690mm wading depth can be increased to 850mm with a ‘Deep Wave’ pack.

Speaking of traction, BF-Goodrich KO2 All Terrain tyres are mounted on 17-inch alloy wheels to further improve off-road credentials. Torsus are yet to quote a tyre size for the Terrastorm, but images show a 265/75 R17 size.

Torsus calls their new Terrastorm the “world’s most capable 4x4 minibus”, but that’s something that might be argued by the likes of Mercedes-Benz and Iveco.

Australian off-road bus needs are also served by Bus 4X4, who locally convert Toyota HiAce vans and Coaster buses with Toyota hardware into off-road-capable rigs. While some of these find their way into recreational applications, the majority are used in mining, industry and commercial applications.

Torsus Terrastorm specifications

Wheelbase: 3,640 mm
Body length:6,000 mm
Body width: 2,065 mm
Height: 2,880 mm
Approach angle: 26 degrees
Departure angle: 20 degrees
Ground Clearance: 290 mm
Fording depth standard/increased:690 mm/820 mm