The Troopy

I’d been thinking about converting my landcruiser 200 series into something more useful for quite a while, ever since I was back in Fowlers bay I’d been keeping an eye out online and researching a few different options. Originally my thoughts were to go for a tray back ute with a slide on camper, but there were a few drawback to that, mainly that there was no real living space during bad weather in a slide on. So, the troopy conversion won out for my wants and needs in the end. 

The idea being that the current car I have, the 200 series Landcruiser is a bit wasted on me, it gets so dirty and scratched and I really only use the front seat. It’s a great car, but if I can sell it for almost what a camper troopy will cost, then swapping over seems to make a lot of sense. They both have the same motor, they are both Landcruisers, but one is a luxurious, carpeted, quiet automatic with all the electronic bells and whistles, while the other is a tough industrial workhorse that’s hardly changed in the last 20 years except for the engine. It doesn’t even have electric windows.

Personally I’d wanted a conversion where the roof hinges from near the windscreen and the back lifts up in the air, these conversions also allowed the bed to hinge up with the roof at the same time storing it out of the way while not needed, leaving a large living space below. I’d not seen any of these available on used vehicles, but there were a couple of suppliers who could convert the roof of a troopy . One of these suppliers had a waiting list of over 6 months, the other is readily available, all I needed to do was find the troopy and begin the conversion process, turning it into a camper.


Or you get lucky and find one online to buy already done.

So it was about 1 in the afternoon when I rang about the troopy, a decision had to be made, I was way down in the south of Tassie and the vehicle was in Victoria somewhere. What the hell, start driving. I rang the owner and told him I’d be back in the next day or two to have a look and I was staying near Ballarat. when I got close to Devenport I pulled over and made my booking for the ferry including a cabin for the over night trip back.

On the trip back I spent quite a while chatting with one of the girls who worked on the boat but that’s a whole different subject. I arrived back at my caravan still quite early in the morning and noticed a troopy in the caravan park. As I got closer, I realized it was the the same vehicle. They had decided to drive closer to Ballarat for when I arrived, and somehow they had managed to pick the exact same park I was in. It was a funny surprise for both of us.


This was not the type of poptop that I originally wanted, this has a slide out bed in the roof section which you need to set up and pack away every day. This means making up the bed to some extent daily, but after many discussions with the current owner, Martin, he told me numerous reasons why he considered this type of poptop more useful and functional. Martin has spent about 10 years travelling expeditions and living in numerous vehicles including some that he’s built so I had to give some credence to his experience, even if he was trying to sell the vehicle.


So the vehicle is a 2008 landcruiser troop carrier, it was originally converted by Kea a well known conversion/hire company and their cars pop up for sale reasonably regularly but they are normally x-hire with high kilometres and often abused. This has had 2 private owners from new with a well detailed service history including all receipts and it’s only traveled 120,000 kilometres. It’s far from the standard factory camper, the interior has been changed extensively and there are many add ons.

This is a list of the add ons and features of the vehicle-

  • ARB Diff lockers front and back
  • ARB Bull bar
  • Front winch (Warn 9.5xp)
  • Kaymar rear bumper with wheel carrier and storage box
  • Stratos after-market Driver and Passenger seat
  • Old Man Emu suspension front & back
  • Tough Dog shock absorbers
  • Drive/fog lights
  • ARB compressor built in, incl. hose to inflate tyre
  • Sand ladders which fold down and double as side table
  • Solar panel combined 200W
  • 12 to 240V Inverter 350W pure sine
  • 12V sockets
  • 240V to 12V charger for batteries
  • 240V sockets inside when connected to landline
  • 80L + 40L = 120 liters fresh water tank
  • Water filter system for drinking water
  • 45L Waeco Compressor fridge/freezer
  • Sink with fresh and filtered water taps
  • Thedford portable toilet
  • 2 inside lights
  • Kitchen unit with cupboards and four drawers
  • Under bench storage + two removable plastic boxes
  • Full curtains plus fly screens on side sliding windows
  • Pop-top with slide-out bed approx 1.2 x 2m
  • Possibility to sleep downstairs with limited width approx 1m
  • Fold-out rear table
  • Side awning by Gordy Gear: 2.5×2.5m
  • Rear awning by Kea campers, covers entrance
  • Double door locks
  • Rear step by Landrover

Quite a long list of bits and pieces, this was a well set up vehicle. A quick add up of most extras and there would be well over $40,000 worth. So equating the maths, if I bought a second hand troopy for about $45,000 which is probably the going rate, maybe $40,000 if I was lucky, then this was a pretty good deal at the finally agreed price of $66,500. I had figured my bare minimum to fit out a camper with the essential bit and pieces that I wanted, including the roof conversion was going to be $30,000 so even if I had mucked around and done it all myself then it would still cost more for a very basic fitout.



Sink and water filter

Some storage under the sink as well as a water filter, one tap is filtered water, one is for cooking.


Electrics are simple with most things 12V though there is a quality 350W inverter on the right, also just beyond that is an ARB air compressor for the diff lockers and also pumping tires.

Storage under seat

Yep, there’s even a toilet up there in the third section, I’m unsure whether that will stay or not.


Sand tracks and table


Table on back door


Updates seats

2008 was the last year they released the internal layout with the metal dash board, it’s also the last model to be without any airbags, perhaps not such a great thing.

Underneath front


Underneath rear

The under side of the car is immaculate and sprayed with anti rust treatment.

Bed set up

The vehicle is immaculately clean Martin and Naomi have lived in the car for the past 2 years, they spent a year travelling Australia, before loading it into a shipping container and it was shipped off to South America.  They then spent a year travelling around there before returning a couple of weeks ago to Australia. Now it’s time for them to return to New Zealand giving up the travelling life for at least a while, so my chance for a win.

They have been camped here at the caravan park for almost a week now while we’ve been jumping through hoops, two kiwis selling a QLD registered car to a West Australian in Victoria with no fixed address makes complications. This has also given me a lot of time with them learning more little bits and pieces about the car, and also the people who have owned it. A car is really only as good as the owners who have driven it and maintained it.

So tomorrow should be the day, I have the appointment with Vic roads tomorrow for the transfer, with some luck it will be quick and I’ll have two new number plates. Then Tuesday I’ll be back onto the ferry, returning to Tassie to finish my travels there. It’s been a crazy week.


OK, she’s mine. It’s been a great week hanging out with Martin and Naomi with many laughs. and I guess I should now confess the cars name. Priscilla. And when I suggested that perhaps I might change the name.


Part of the sale agreement was that I had to keep the name, in fact there was suggestion that I should also have to paint the name on the side of the car.

Martin and Naomi

Fast forward a few years, I sold Priscilla to a young couple in South Australia who flew over and drove her back to her new home. Then one day I’m out cycling in the sleepy little town of Denmark on the south coast of W.A. and I took a double take as I rode past this troopy parked in front of the pub.

An old friend

Surely not!

Some things can’t be replicated, and the rear box with the stickers from South America can’t be faked. And look at the name?

It’s her.

So, she’s back in W.A. again, and she’s reinvented herself, quite a bit, though there are a few aspects that haven’t changed. I waited around outside the pub for half an hour or so hoping the owner would come back.

We then spent an hour of more going over all the ways in which she has changed and I filled the new owner in on more of her history. The new owner had been researching troopies online and found this exact post, then found her for sale in SA, so he flew over there and bought her.

The box

He wanted a larger box on the back to store fold up chairs and other bits, yet didn’t want to lose the iconic original box, so he had the original box cut down and added to a larger custom aluminium box. Added reversing camera, lights, gas bottles etc.

The other side

The other swing arm has a gas hot water system, water storage, storage, lights and more.

Back passenger door

Inside the back on the passenger side it’s been completely remodeled, electrics, air outlet, storage and yes even an oven.

Custom storage

Storage bags hanging off the rear windows, these slide into sail track attached to the door frame.

No more windows

The passenger side doesn;t have windows any more but access hatches. The old original droop down table is still here with aliminium track, but extra maxtrax have been attached, plus there’s 2 more maxtrax on the other side. And, she now has a slide out kitchen.

Kitchen anyone?

The electrics in here are now on a whole different level


Multiple lithium batteries, charging from the solar on the roof, 2000W inverter, and more outlets and switches than you can poke a stick at.

The DC side

That’s 7 x 12V outlets just here.

More storage for cooking stuff

More storage in the rear hatch mainly for cooking gear.


There’s an awning which swaps right around the vehicle, over the bonnet, right down the passenger side, and around the back of the vehicle, with some fairly sturdy attachments as it’s a self supporting wing type awning.

Rod holder

Drivers side has a fishing rod holder, another fold dawn table with maxtrax, and an opening window to get into the fridge just inside.

Yep, it’s her

There are so many more changes, she was stripped internally and sound proofing added, engine chipped, aerials, lights, I think from memory there are 6 cameras around the vehicle, so many external lights..  Such a different beast to when I had her.


But she’s still Priscilla, and the current owner plans to have it have her name emblazoned down her sides with decals when he’s finished..


Check out some other troopy posts below, click on the images to get an idea of my troopy obsession.


Not Another troopy


Life in the troopy


Tassie in a troopy


Troopy ideas




Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Neil February 11, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    I like it but I would like an automatic transmission, is it the V8 ?

    • Reply joel February 12, 2017 at 5:05 am

      Hey Neil.. Yep it’s the V8, but they don’t do an automatic troopy. You can get an aftermarket conversion done but it would cost some $.

  • Reply Sean July 30, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Hey Joel. What brand is the pop top as I really need this on my Troopy 🙂

    • Reply joel July 30, 2017 at 2:35 pm

      Hi Sean, it was done by Kea, but they don’t exist any more. A guy who worked for them does a new version, search for cruisinator, it’s a fair bit larger now. Maybe check out Alu-cab, my mate just had one of those installed.

  • Reply Sean August 1, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    Cheers Joel
    It’s unfortunately a fair bit bigger now is right!! Not loving it and also the prices don’t seem to swing me either! All-cab seem like a superior top but again it’s mega dollars to get one! Best one price wise iv come across so far was Aurora at 6400 . Il keep searching but that is top of the list so far! Thanks so much for your suggestions, if you have any more please let me know .


  • Reply Any Ideas, 4x4, motorhome, desert, Rally. December 2, 2018 at 2:42 am

    […] I don't know but they're the answer if you can get hold of one. Expect you want deep pockets though.The Troopy – Have Home Will Travel Reply With […]

  • Reply lawrence Daniels April 14, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    that’s a great buy I reckon, exactly what Im after down the track, just waiting to turn 65 then retire and hit the road in one of these which is only a couple years away , I hope I find a decent troopy like you have, good luck with your travels, Im jealous , my day cant come quick enough,,,,,……

  • Reply Tony June 23, 2019 at 7:20 pm

    Hey, Nice truck!

    I’m looking around for a Camper Troopy and am leaning towards the “Half” poptop. However would be great to get an alternate point of view from someone experienced!

    Do you mind sharing why the previous owner thought the “Full” poptop was better than the “half” poptop? Also how are you finding the full poptop and would you recommend it over the “half” poptop?


    • Reply joel June 25, 2019 at 9:50 am

      Hey Tony, I assume by “half” you mean the one hinging from the front? There are pros and cons to each design, my friend had an alu-cab conversion hinged at the front and he swears by it. I was very happy in the end with what I had with the full poptop, it offered a slight verandah at the front which helped shade the cab, and when you were popped you had full movement forwards and back inside without bending, and it’s easy to sleep either way depending on your angle. The full poptops aren’t so readily available as the front hinge style.

  • Reply Justin and Heather May 13, 2024 at 8:49 am

    Thanks for the inspiration. Helped us to make a choice and decision to buy a troopy 🙂
    We’re joining the fraternity, yay!

    • Reply joel May 19, 2024 at 1:29 pm

      Nice work…👍. Though damn paying a premium for troopies atm..😏

    Leave a Reply