we went with an SCA on our lwb.. but then we didnt really have a choice, well we did but it was SCA or reimo and we didnt like the reimo on a hire one we had.. . In Switzerland they only accept these two as they have the TUV. There is no way around it for us so Hilo and all the others were out.. i spent 6mnths researching and trying to find out all the necessary details to prove to them that the likes of Hilo was ok etc but they came back with this: the Hilo seems to cut into the radius's at the back (no details can be had of this exactly so the swiss dvla prefer to err on the safe side) which goes outside of the allowable cut line from VW therefore VW Switzerland doesnt allow it. Until other proof is presented it wont happen here.. they were even going to let me do it and get an independant TUV done in germany which they would have then accepted.
i have sent all this info to Hilo but they dont communicate anymore so i left it.. i didnt get the necessary backup/info from them when required so went with SCA..
HI Scotia, As you know we spent a lot of time trying to help you with this matter but unfortunately the Swiss authorities seem to have different rules and regulations in regards to obtaining TUV approval.
We don’t have an overall ‘generic’ TUV approval on the HiLo product itself and one of the main reasons we haven’t gone down this route is mainly due to the fact we were quoted in the region of £40,000 in order for us to obtain it.
We are expanding our fitting network across Europe and for the fitters we have in Germany, France (and shortly the Netherlands & Spain), a generic TUV approval is not required by the authorities and a single TUV approval is all that is needed in these countries.
Our HiLo fitter in Germany does not require any authority whatsoever from VW in order to obtain TUV approval. It is the law before using on their roads that any major modifications such as a roof installation has to pass a TUV inspection. Therefore he takes each HiLo conversion to a TUV testing centre (similar to our MOT) to be approved individually. We also feel this way is far better than a generic TUV as it ensures that each and every HiLo conversion is individually checked and signed off. This way it prevents any inferior conversions slipping through the net.
We appreciate different countries have different rules and regulations, however unfortunately HiLo aren’t in a position to spend such a large amount of money for a generic TUV for a country where we get very few enquiries from – as much as we would like to :-(
Also, just to clarify some details around the fitment/cutting of the HiLo roof and the alleged VW recommended cutting line - by design, the HiLo roof has a very strong 6mm steel, one piece safety frame that is galvanized, powder coated, primed and then bonded and riveted all around the cut aperture.
This frame is also primed and bonded around the underside. This in effect encapsulates all cut edges and forms an extra strengthening loop over and under the existing box sections of the vehicle making it stronger up top than the original vehicle was before the roof skin was cut out. This extra strength was confirmed to us after we presented our T5 bodyshell with a HiLo safety frame installed for a first time successful crash testing at STATUS at Manchester University.
We came away confident that no compromise had been made regarding the upper body strength after cutting out and installing a HiLo roof in the crash test bodyshell.