I remember reading about the HPA twin-turbo upgrade on a VW New Beetle when I was in middle school. It blew my mind in many ways. Then the MkIV R32 rolled around and they started working their magic on that. Heaven, BiTurbo R32 is thy name. HPA does extremely nice installations, creating a driveable monster out of one of my favorite cars. This one is juiced up even more than I’d heard of before, with some 500hp at the WHEELS.
Ah, the first car. Like the first love, it will always be special, though these cars are pretty special anyways. Most of the time when you mention “Volkswagen Pickup” to anyone you get a scrunched up face and inquiries as to what the hell you’re talking about. What I am talking about is an awesome little car. In addition to its unique nature, my Pickup (known as the Caddy in the rest of the world) had great steering feel, a peppy engine, and an 1800 lb curb weight that made it plenty of fun in curves. Eventually too many things went wrong and we had to sell it for something more reliable, but it went to a VW nut in Ohio, so I feel okay about it. This example, for sale on eBay and located in Arkansas, is what I would have loved to do with my little Rabbit. The ad says it’s been restored and it looks pretty nice inside and out, but the key here is a 1.6l turbodiesel. Many Rabbit Pickups came with diesels, but those are known as, well… slow. Real slow. The turbo on this one sounds like it makes it a lot more fun while still returning Prius-like gas mileage.
I’d want to correspond with the seller a bit to get a better idea of the specifics than the ad provides, and “restored” may be a slight overstatement, but it looks like a clean and solid example of a fun car. Useful, fun, and most of all unique, a truck like this is absolutely on my “must-own-again” list.
Before everyone gets their collective leiderhosen in bunches, I’ll let the seller explain WHY this VW is deserving of a such a price. It’s a long but entertaining read, and I highly recommend it to fans of obscure VW knowledge.
These trucks are pretty common all over the world, EXCEPT in the USA. VW technically did not import ANY Vanagon trucks into the USA. This is one of 18 that was brought into Canada under very special circumstances. Indeed, there is a great story behind this Vanagon TriStar Double Cab (DOKA) Syncro (4WD) truck.
As the story goes, there once was an oil exploration company in Canada that ordered 18 Syncro DOKAs just like this one. And, they were not just ANY Syncro DOKAs, but all TriStar models—more on that in a moment. The company ended up going out of business before the trucks arrived. So, VW of North America ended up selling these 18 trucks through their distributors in Canada.
Well, one of the ex-employees of the company snagged two of these, and brought them legally back home to Southern California. Check out the photos of the current California title. That is right: This is one of those 18 DOKAs made with the correct VIN for North America. This may seem like an inconsequential detail—but it is actually quite a big deal in this case, because this DOKA is dieselpowered. Currently, it is not possible to bring a diesel powered vehicle into California if the vehicle in question was not a model offered somewhere else in the USA.
The Volkswagen Fox was introduced to North America in 1987 model year to serve as a sort of Beetle like, entry level vehicle. Based on the South American market Volkswagen Gol, the Fox was sold as a two or four door sedan, with a two door wagon appearing in the lineup from 1988 to 1990. Power came from a fuel injected, 1.8 liter 8 valve engine mated solely to a manual transmission.
The seller states:
VW Collectors and Enthusiasts take note! This is a 1989 Volkswagen Fox Coupe WITH ONLY 1300 MILES!! This vehicle comes with a CA SMOG CERTIFICATE dated 02/09/10. IT WAS inspected by our mechanic and was found to be running and driving however it has been sitting for 20 years and we would recommend anyone to have it fully inspected by your local VW dealer. The A/C was blowing cold when we tested it.
This vehicle looks like it just came off the showroom floor…it may very well the only VW Fox in existence with the low of mileage and in the pristine condition. It appears to be an always garaged vehicle. It has only been driven 35 miles since 2004 and 165 since 1996. It is a local, one owner vehicle. The owner/donor suffered vision impairment soon after purchasing this vehicle and as a result it was not used for 20 years. The exterior and interior look brand new; there does not appear to be any wear to the vehicle.
With less than a week left in a no reserve auction, it will be interesting to see what this sells for. Surely not many were keeping these stored away thinking they would be future classics. Somehow I don’t think it will fetch big bucks, which is a good thing for those out there looking for cheap, efficient, German-engineered transportation.…
Have to say, this is a VeeDub I hadn’t seen before. Kind of like a Type 181 Thing, but way more badass. The seller’s description sums it up nicely:
All metal body, fiberglass top (not easily removable). Rear torsion housing on back, is mechanically a ’70 Bus. Pans (shortened) on forward is a ’70 Bug. As far as I can tell, stock 1600 DP engine. Bus tranny has ridiculous gears, top speed 50 mph. Has built in tow bar and front mounted winch that operates from inside the cab. Windows go fully up or fully down. No back seat, the whole area is taken up by an aluminum 25 gal. gas tank. New tires and wheels. Includes spare tire, large skid plate (removed) and a mostly fabbed trailer hitch for the rear. Everything works except the horn. Starts, runs and drives well. Needs new ignition switch (part included with vehicle).
With regards to water cooled Volkswagens, the K70 is where it all began. This is also the first front engined, front wheel drive Volkswagen. Designed by NSU, the K70 was intended to be a smaller sibling to the revolutionary R080 rotary engined sedan. After Volkswagen assumed control of NSU, the K70 filled a niche in Volkswagen’s lineup and was marketed as a successor to the Type 4. The K70 continued on until 1973 with the introduction of the Passat. In addition to a water cooled engine, some other interesting features were inboard front brakes, rack and pinion steering and MacPherson Strut front suspension.
Here’s an excerpt from the seller’s comprehensive ad:
There are close to 500 examples in the world and only 3 in the USA. This is an exellent example of a running orginal car and the best car I have ever found. It is the ONLY running K70 in the USA. It’s my great barn find, trailer queen. I purchased it from the original owner out of New York State several years ago so this makes me the second owner. It was brought over from Belgium where it was originally purchased and converted for US import. It has a MPH speedo!
I have pored over 15 grand into this car lovingly. I didn’t skimp on anything. I would consider this car “lightly restored”. My goal was to keep it as original as possible. It has about 90% original paint and 90% original or period correct pieces.
The first water cooled VW.
1 Bavarian folk music tape
1 medium box or original used parts
1 spare windshield (just in case)
technical support from myself and or the K70 club after joining
This car represents a unique opportunity to own what could be considered the bridge between the air-coooled and water-cooled Volkswagen eras.…
The original hot hatch is still one of the cleanest and most fun, routinely ranking well on “Best Drivers’ Cars” lists. Ever since my hand-me-down 1981 VW Caddy I’ve wanted a GTI. With lines as tight as its handling, A1 GTIs turn my head more than most modern sports cars. Simple, useful, and fun, it just doesn’t get much better. This example has a mere 95k miles on it with a freshly rebuilt gearbox.
It shows it’s age in some spots, but the interior looks very clean (great Recaros!), as does the engine. Though less-than-safe, GTIs look awesome without the bumpers. 95k well-documented miles means there’s plenty of fun left, and $3200 is a fine price for this condition. It’d be mine if I had the means/space.
This sort of fits into the SUV theme week.
This bus looks like it has been languishing in a junkyard or perhaps it is an extra from the set of Lost. Some clever person decided to shorten up this bus, but it looks like they never really finished their project. I’m sure there is some non-PC joke in here somewhere about the person who thought this was a good idea and this being a “short bus”. It looks a bit of a mess. There is some interesting iron in the background of some of the photos.
The seller says it hasn’t been driven and with a wheelbase like this perhaps that is the safest thing. $3500 to give yourself a new nightmare. If you really were to take this on, why not go nuts and mid mount a BMW V12 engine.
Hot on the heels of the turbo Golf Rallye, this R32 Turbo popped up on eBay. I love the R32, so much so that it’s at the top of my realistic dream-car list. The looks are aggressive yet subtle, the AWD makes it a 4-season monster, and it’s got some juice from the 3.2l VR6. It’s probably the most well-done car from VW in decades, though the new GTI portends good things are coming. The one gripe that has followed the R32 is a lack of power, and while 240hp in a Golf sounds pretty good, it’s not fast, especially when compared to its 4WD contemporaries, the Subaru STI and the Mitsubishi Evo. This seller has addressed that issue and more with an EIP turbo setup along and a host of driveline and suspension additions.
Here is an example of the first vehicle in the world powered by the engine Mazda would later popularize, the Rotary Wankel engine. The name Wankel derives from its inventor, Felix Wankel, who was a German engineer. He created the first prototype of his revolutionary engine design in February 1957, and was first presented in running form in a converted NSU Prinz in 1960. The Spider would debut in 1964 and only 2,375 examples were built between 1964 and 1967. The original engine had around 50 horsepower, but it was a very free revving engine and made for a lively package in such a small car with light weight. NSU Motorenwerke AG was purchased by Volkswagen in 1969. They merged the company with Auto Union which later became Audi.
The seller includes a very comprehensive description. Here is an excerpt:
Excellent Condition!! This car has ALWAYS been stored indoors in a heated space and covered with double quilted car covers. The underside is very, very clean. The photos show a very small area of paint peeling above the rear left bumper and below the license plate. These are hardly noticeable. In the driver’s front under tray there is a hardly noticeable repair at the end of the spoiler.
Values can be tough to pin down on such a rare vehicle, but $19,000 seems reasonable for such a revolutionary and historically significant vehicle. Rest assured, you most likely will be the only one at your local car show with one of these. This example does have a few modifications, but these changes can be forgiven due to the scarcity of parts and efforts to make the vehicle more reliable than when it was first produced. This fantastic vehicle has been featured by Jay Leno in a short video on his website, Jay Leno’s Garage:
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