Inexpensive Vanagon Campers

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The fact that many camping Vanagons are going for $40k and up can be daunting for those of us who have aspirations of living the van life. Today we’ll take a look at a couple of 1991 vans that severely undercut the general Vanagon camper market – one pop-top and one rare example that has all the camping accoutrements but no pop-top.

Click for details: 1991 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia on eBay


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Year: 1991
Model: Vanagon Westfalia
Engine: 2.1 liter flat-four
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Mileage: 56,000 mi
Price: $11,800
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This van is a 1991 VW Vanagon Camper with stock 2.1L engine, stock manual transmission and 56k original miles. New tires, new battery new canvas and new 7″ Kenwood radio. Please don’t hesitate to ask any question; will reply right away.

The paint does not shine as it should, and could use a new coat. Please don’t hesitate to ask any question; will reply right away.-Reason for selling: we bought a cottage.

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This first example is nearly all-original and has covered an astonishingly-low 56k miles in its 23 years. I love the dark blue even if the seller states it’s lost a little bit of its luster. The black steelies with chrome caps is also a great, classic Vanagon look. The new canvas on the top is a big plus, and a close eye (and a message to the seller) reveals a sweet DVD-ready stereo in the dash. Overall this Westy looks ready for adventure! Maybe the Canadians haven’t caught wind of the rising Westfalia market, but that shouldn’t stop a buyer from pouncing on this great deal. A small bit of shopping at GoWesty.com and the ensuing name association could bump the price considerably – or you could just enjoy a great van with a long future of fun left in it.
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Click for details: 1991 Volkswagen Vanagon on eBay

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Year: 1991
Model: Vanagon GL Camper
Engine: 2.1 liter flat-4
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 181,024 mi
Price: Reserve auction, $5,995 Buy-It-Now
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This is a wonderful, rare, 1991, VW Vanagon camper van with stock air conditioning. It has dual air…front and back. This great VW van runs and drives great. It also has rear heat. It has outlets, sink, refridge, area for stove, holding tank, city water hook ups and drain hook up. This has the original camper van window screens and it has curtains. The VW Heidelberg stock stereo is wonderful. It has an electrical breaker board. This has an automatic transmission that shifts smoothly. The doors open and close great. It has head rests. This delightful VW camper van has never been smoked in. It has newer tires. Please feel free to call with any questions…5036563333. This classic camper van is being offered by Peggy’s Classic Cars, Oregon DA4795. It is located at 18950 S Hwy 99 E, Oregon City, OR 97045. The motor is horizontally opposed. It is set up for city water/fresh water. It has dual, air/heat. It has stock head rests. The tires are near new. It has a breaker board and power outlets. There is no rust in the door jams. This is a wonderful van…it truly drives excellent, runs the same. It is really very straight and clean for the year and has a clean and clear title…This is a nice one, you don’t want to miss it. Please feel free to call or email with any questions prior to bidding. Thank you, for looking, good luck bidding…you won’t be disappointed. This wonderful van is available for inspection by yourself or an independent 3rd party prior to bidding. This van is being sold as is, where is, the buyer is responsible for picking it up or arranging shipping, we will assist you if you wish with finding shipping. Please arrange pick up within 2 weeks of purchase or make arrangements with us prior to bidding. Paypal $500.00 deposit due upon purchase, please remit the balance within 5 days of auction win to us in cash, cashiers check, or arrange any other options prior to bidding. …thank you!…have a great day! The Vanagon is powered by a 2.1-liter water-cooled four-cylinder engine that generates 90 horsepower.

Standard features for the Vanagon included front bucket seats, a rear window defogger, a padded instrument panel, a sliding side door, and a lockable glove box. The Vanagon GL added deluxe front seats, power heated mirrors, a rear window wiper, carpeting, and air conditioning, while the GL Camper added a stove, sink, refrigerator, storage cabinets, and folding stow-away tables.

Generally, drivers agreed that the Vanagon was fun to drive, and cited its handling, roominess, durability, and versatility as positive points.

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Non-pop-top Vanagons have really been catching my eye recently with a sleeker look (for a brick) while still encouraging a wide range of uses. This one is a little rougher around the edges, with faded paint, high miles, a bit of a home-brew kitchen station, but it still screams possibility. An engine-swap, a little paint, and some attention to the camping area and all of a sudden this is a serious road trip machine. With a Buy-It-Now of less than $6k, seems like a promising starting point to me.

-NR

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3 Comments

  1. @Nate, when you said “aspirations of living the van lifestyle,” I immediately thought of this awesome documentary:

  2. I too love the van lifestyle, and I’ve met some of the people in that movie trailer at van shows but I’ve never gotten to see the whole film. I have a ’64 Chevy G-10 with a 327 and I’ve always thought the westfalia vanagons were awesome. Anyway, great post, I love this site, read it every day, thanks for all the work you guys put into it!

  3. From the ebay listing for the red van:
    “Q: it appears that the camper interior was home made? thanks for a reply
    A: The hook ups and camper are clearly stock… ”

    LOL.

    Clearly this seller has never seen a vanagon before, as further evidenced by his claim that it has “dual air conditioning.” Sorry dude. It doesn’t.

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