It is pretty difficult to get campers reclassified these days. You'll need to get it inspected before the V5c will get changed I'm afraid.
For a vehicle to qualify as a 'Motor Caravan' in the UK in the eyes of the DVLA the following permanent fixtures must be present:
There must be a bed with a minimum length of 6ft or 180cms
The bed must be an integral part of the vehicle living accommodation area
The bed must be permanent or converted from seats (the bed can fold away during the day)
The bed fixtures must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and/or side walls, unless it is over the drivers cab compartment.
There must be a horizontal sliding door or an outward opening rear or side door.
Seats and Tables
There must be a seating area for diners to sit around
The table can be fixed or detachable
The table must mount directly to the vehicle floor or side walls
The table mounting must be secured as a permanent feature, either bolted screwed or welded. The table itself can be detachable.
Seats must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and/or side walls
The seats must be secured as a permanent fixture, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
Permanently secured seating must be available for use at a table
Note: DVLA do not state any requirements regarding water storage. However, most insurance companies state that the water tank should be onboard, or under the chassis. However, some insurance companies are happy with an external water container that can be moved, such as those used with a caravan.
The vehicle must have an onboard or external (e,g, under the chassis) water container
Note: The insurer Adrian Flux requires the water container to hold 6 gallons / 27 litres.
The vehicle must have at least one cupboard, locker or wardrobe
The cupboard must be an integral part of the living accommodation area
The cupboard must be a permanent feature, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
The cupboard must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and / or side walls
The vehicle must have cooking facilities powered by fixed gas, electric hob or microwave oven
The cooking facilities must be secured directly to the vehicle floor or side wall
The cooking facilities must be a permanent feature, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
Gas and electric hobs must have a minimum or 2 cooking rings. Microwave ovens must have a power source (don't just fit one that can't be used)
Gas cooking facilities with remote fuel supplies must have the gas supply pipe permanently secured to the vehicle structure
Gas cooking facilities with remote fuel supplies should have the gas bottle, fuel reservoir secured to the vehicle structure
The vehicle must have at least one side window
How to Change a Vans Classification to Camper Van or Motorhome in the UK
In the UK, changing the classification of a van to a campervan or motorhome is fairly straightforward. The following information is based on real experience, correct at the time of the re-classification. This serves as a good guide, but please contact the DVLA and/or VOSA to confirm the rules regarding your vehicle.
When your conversion is complete, and your van is now (nearly) a camper van or motorhome you need to contact the DVLA and inform them.
You should change your V5C (log book) document and return it to them. You need to change the vehicle body type to "Motor Caravan". Motor Caravan is the term used by the DVLA for campervans and motorhomes. See the DirectGov website for details on changing your V5 document.
You should also include a covering letter, briefly covering what you have done to the vehicle. Also include photographs of your converted vehicle. Dont include too many. Between 10 and 20 are required. Do ensure that you include the vehicles number plate in a shot of the front of the vehicle, and a shot of the back of the vehicle. From the photos the DVLA can see if you have done a good conversion to the vehicle, or simply thrown a mattress in the back.
Send the paperwork to:
If you have done a good conversion, and the DVLA are satisfied they will return a new V5 document to you, with the body type changed.
However, if they are unsure of your conversion they will ask you to visit the local DVLA inspection office. An agent will inspect the vehicle before recommending any change of documentation.
The DVLA do not publish strict guidelines for the above. However, The Department of Transport do publish a strict 'motor caravan' definition for vehicles that are being imported. Click here, and scroll down to 'Motor caravan'. It's likely the DVLA also use the same guidelines. However, the strict definitions here are, it seems, open to some interpretation.