I'm just loading my new coach built up for it's first trip away tomorrow. I had an extra long high top iveco daily before this and an lt35 lwb hi top before that. The vans have progressed in quality/contents as I've gone through them.
You need to think about where you're happy for your bikes to live. If you don't mind them staying outside on a rack at the back your choices are much greater. I wasn't happy with this though so have my new camper has a garage area at the back for bike storage.
My new one is a mclouis glen 440, which gives me a double bed over the cab, a single rear bunk at the back (would be 2 but the lower is lost to make the garage area) and if needed another bed can be made out of the table and chairs in the middle. It's got heating, running water, a shower, hob, grill, fridge etc so I can go away and be self sufficient. Despite being a 6 berth van 4is the most that would be comfy in it and 2 people would be the nicest option.
Cost wise you're right that vw's carry a big scene tax and are for me best avoided. I'd suggest you go and look at a few to get some ideas and think about the facilities you need. If you plan to be on sites most of the time then you can get away with a lot less than if you want to be entirely self sufficient.