The Westfalia market is all over the place right now, with top values staying remarkably strong as they stand strong as one of the best campers ever made. On the other end of the spectrum, we have examples like this brown survivor. A life on the East Coast has caused some minor decay, but the seller, a serial-VW owner, has taken care of many issues and replaced the engine with a later-model 2.1 a while back. It’s far from a perfect example, but it is functional and could be a solid project for a VW enthusiast. For under $8k, this is about as inexpensive an entry into Westylife as you’ll find.
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The license plate on the Vanagon is “STLMOVN,” an apt tag after 200k miles. Perhaps it also refers to its aged owners, who clearly have a sense of adventure but are passing on their great camper. Despite the higher mileage, the van looks extremely well cared for, with the seats having been covered, the exterior shining like new thanks to living in a garage, and a newer engine (though it’s unclear if that means rebuilt or fully new). It’s too bad “AC is not working” is the a main description line, because the more important news is that all of the appliances are like new. Something – perhaps the higher mileage? – seems to be scaring bidders away from the $14k starting point, but I think this is a very attractive Westy.
Click for details: 1987 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia on eBay
I typically steer clear of salvage titles for obvious reasons, but this Westy seems deserving of an understanding eye. For starters, I’m guessing that you could sneeze on a 1980 Vanagon and the insurance company would total it. A little engine fire in one of these oldies would certainly do the trick. Some kind soul saw fit to save it, however, and the world is a little better for it. The restoration is a mix of subtle and style, with the classic brown exterior looking stock and the plaid-plaid-plaid upholstery making you think this thing’s top speed is a few orders of magnitude higher than it actually is. The new interior, pop top, and exterior plugs all turn this Westy into a faux time capsule instead of a basket case. It may be aircooled, but this thing looks brand new!
Click for details: 1980 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia
This is an extremely clean diesel Westy from the only year when VW actually offered an oil-burner straight from the factory. As opposed to the anemic original 1.6 liter, last year this received a heart update via a brand-new 1.9-liter diesel unit straight from Volkswagen. Despite being pretty early in the Vanagon life cycle, the chassis has just 84k miles, putting together a very tidy package with a complete, fully functioning interior and nearly flawless exterior. All of this comes together for a van that appears ready for several more decades of fun.
Click for details: 1982 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia on eBay
Here’s a nice, mostly-stock Westy that comes with a funny little bonus trailer on the back. I’m not sure how the “solar panel toolbox” works (is the battery inside?), but I like it already and dig the Westfalia badging. It seems a little excessive to just haul bikes on it – that’s what bike racks are for! – but there are plenty of uses for a good trailer. Dirtbike? Scooter? All the stuff you can’t fit inside? Anyway, it may not be the most minimalist, self-contained setup, but who cares when there’s no reserve on it? It looks clean in and out with the main detraction being rather high mileage.