First off, big apologies for not keeping up with this site. It’s been a hectic summer, and my 9-5 has really ramped up recently, so my free computer time has been limited. With all that said, when I saw this van pop up on eBay the other day, it was enough to push me over the hump and share my thoughts here. This nice looking specimen is a 1986 VW Vanagon Syncro (AWD) Westfalia Camper with stock 2.1 L engine, stock manual transmission and 275k KM’s.
While 2wd Westys have gone up in price over the past few years, syncro campers have become almost unobtainable below the $40k mark. It was listed on The Samba June 13th, 2016 for $47,500, and is currently up for auction on eBay with a starting bid of $30k USD. I’m not sure why people have starting bids below the reserve price, there’s really no purpose here. Start it at $0 if you’re going to have a reserve price anyways, much more fun seeing people bid up a $40k van starting from $0. At any rate, the auction ends on Sunday, August 24th at 5pm PST.
Here’s the scoop.
- There’s no way to know what was under the original paint, and Quebec doesn’t have too many survivors due to vans being driven in their harsh winters, so see if you can get the “before” pics of the van. It looks like a decent paint job (see the door jam photo), but it’s always good to know where it came from.
- Nice looking 16″ in wheels, with 10k miles on some Nokian 225/55 R shoes. I’m a bit unfamiliar with those wheels, but you pretty much can’t go wrong with Nokians on a Syncro. However, maybe they’re knock offs, as the seller states they are “Nokia” tires. Those phones were pretty durable, though you probably can’t play snake with these tires.
- It’s got at the Bigger Brake Kit from GoWesty, which is always a nice upgrade. Most folks only put these on if they’ve got a larger powerplant, but this engine is stock.
- Dometic Catalina 2,500 Awning – You can pretty much call this a $grand, but be careful in windy situations when it’s opened up.
- It looks like the A/C was removed, as there’s a mis matched door in the storage area above the rear bench seat. No need to stress out a syncro engine with A/C anyways.
- It’s been LED’d out on the inside, including gauges. This is a nice add on because they’re much brighter, and drastically improves battery life when camping.
- Not a huge deal, but I don’t see the tables anywhere in the photos, and they’re not mentioned in the descriptions, be sure to ask.
- There’s no “knobs” on the dash, in fact it looks like they’re missing a stereo too. Basically, as far as the AWD and drive train, it’s a bone stock syncro without lockers or a decoupler. While the seller states there’s a new drive shaft, there’s no photos of the undercarriage. This might be a tell tale sign there’s been some rust issues.
- Note that it is a Canadian model, hence the shore power plug is near the bottom of the van, and not in line with the other RV outlets.
So, the big question, how much are they willing to take for it? Any guesses? I’d say anything under $33k would be a bargain, anything over $40k would be getting closer to normal. IMO it’s all about the paint job and “rust” issues that could have been disguised. Care to share your wisdom or thoughts? Leave a comment below, or head on over to the individual posts about this Westy on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest and share your words there.