20K Original Mile 1967 VW Bus Campmobile

It may be hard to believe that a vehicle designed for globe-trotting has seen such little use, but this 1967 Volkswagen Bus Westfalia “Campmobile” is a true survivor with 20,863 original miles since new. The Bus is a one-owner example representing the final year of split window production, and the seller notes that its full assortment of camping equipment remains in excellent condition – heck, the original tent has never been used. Find it here on eBay with bids to just over $33K and the reserve unmet, and thanks to Barn Finds reader Patrick S. for the find. 

Ever since the 21- and 23-window Bus price explosion of the last few years, the Type 2 lost some of its luster for me as it became yet another vehicle simply designed to look good in a collection. That sentiment aside, a genuine camper conversion with all of its original bits still installed strikes me as a far better investment, as it’s far harder to re-create a Westfalia conversion when you consider all of the disparate components that go into making this Bus a true home on wheels.

Look at this – how stunning. The cabinetry looks perfect, as do the blinds and couch cushions. One of my favorite details is the OEM roof rack, which the seller notes is in excellent condition as the galvanized steel hasn’t corroded and the wood slats haven’t cracked. Most of the time, when you do find an unrestored Westfalia, there is an extra layer of work associated with simply bringing the living quarters up to an acceptable standard of comfort and cleanliness – and that’s before you tackle the mechanical bits. Not necessary here.

The seller notes that the Bus was used for a few years by its original owner and that entered into decades of prolonged sleep. Thankfully, it was carefully stored, and no rust or corrosion is noted on the vehicle. The paint is described as being original with no major flaws, and obviously, the front driver and passenger compartment has held up quite well. Despite its years of inactivity, the seller claims some basic mechanical refurbishing now has the Bus alive and running well. The eventual owner will even get the original window sticker, and overall, this survivor camper is hard to fault.

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    Ok, I’ll go 1st. We all know, even before looking at the price, it’s going to be this much. I can’t blame the seller, can you imagine finding this at an estate sale, with little interest, and paying a paltry amount? Like finding a chunk of gold the size of a cinder block. We would do the same thing, bilk the market for whatever will go, until the bottom falls out, like any investment deal. I can speak for most of us here, this stuff is merely a conversation piece, I doubt anyone here would go for this, still, it must make people that have one pretty happy, for a while, anyway. Just for the record, what would YOU do with $35,000 dollars instead? Nice home in the UP of Mich. and STILL have money left for 2 other toys. Pretty crazy, hey?

    24
    • RayT Member

      You are SO right, HowardA! While I regularly see cars here that I can’t afford and therefore seem over-priced, I can’t really work up much irritation if the seller actually gets said price. It’s a free market, after all….

      And of course some of us remember when we could pick these things up for peanuts Back In the Day, and some of us might wish we had lugged ’em home to stash away as investments. Heck, I remember looking at one on a used-car lot in 1970. A 23-window, immaculate, good runner, and the salesman was ready to let it go for $850. There was also a ’56 Healey on the lot, but that was $950…too high for me! I didn’t buy either one.

      Someone will shell out big for this Bus. Looking at other stuff the seller has for sale, he’s reaching for top dollar, but hey, if you don’t ask, you’ll never get!

      3
    • Sam61

      Howard, You hit out of the park again! I would purchase a nice driver Buick Reatta then come up to the UP. Prices must still be reasonable in the UP. Our extended family has a legacy water front family cottage in Fish Creek (late 1930s). Our “cottage neighbor” cashed out a few years ago for 7 figure money.

      I always liked the Reatta…I want to drive/enjoy/maintain…not speculate.

      3
      • DAVID

        😄I HAV A 👍 73 VW VAN REVERSE ROTATION CORVAIR POWERED WITH A
        CLOSE RATIO 1st & 2nd BIFFADIFF WAS A DAILY DRIVER 4 YRS. I PUT 100,000 MI ON IT GOT IMPOUNDED ONCE 4 SPEEDING CHP CLOCKED ME AT 100+ ON THE WAY 2 WORK, I DROVE IT
        LIKE THAT ALL THE TIME

        1
    • Mountainwoodie

      HoA:

      Your’e on fire! Maybe not the UP, How about Owosso? Lol.

      These campers strike something so primitive in me that I swear I’m glad I wouldn’t spend the money no matter what! ( i.e. even if I had it)

      That said, and to be redundant, many moons ago I put a full OEM ’67 Westphalia interior into a ’67 21 window, in perfect original condition, the bus I mean, and drove up and down the West Coast having a ball. BigFoot even rocked the bus in Mammoth. I sold it for six grand in 1984 on the way to a series of 2002’s.

      That’s my problem. If we can ever discover a Bizarro parallel world we can inhabit with our present knowledge, we could hold on to all the cool stuff we had before the rest of the hoipolloi caught on.

      Then bingo sell it to them for ridiculous prices.

      Still it godawful gorgeous in its original state.

      5
      • Dickie F.

        This is a beautiful vehicle and like most, I am captured by the thought of taking it on a long distance trip.
        But I rebuilt a 1980 model and after a weekend spent sleeping in it with the wife, I never tried again. It was retired to duties of a one day picnic vehicle and for that it was perfect.
        That bed was just too small for 12 hours of sound sleep and the lack of bathroom facilities raises its head after just a few hours. Our 1970 Winnebago has it all for a fraction of the cost.

        6
    • Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

      Wait, they are selling nice homes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for $35k?

      1
    • Jeffrey OBrien

      Ok boomer. Just kidding, I’d super charge my Spitfire for a lot less.

  2. matthew B steele

    Not my thing but wow its a nice piece .remember seeing these and thinking..hippie mobile..politically incorrect ? ..in the 60’s what a different time..glad im old enough to remember those days.

    5
  3. matthew B steele

    Remember when ambulances were Cadillac and mercury station wagons ..or hearse platforms?

    8
  4. TimM

    It’s nostalgic on the inside for sure!! Those fold out tables and even the wood on the roof rack is cool!!! The price isn’t going to be cool though, but like Howard said anyone would do it if the had the opportunity!!

    2
    • E55

      Why even focus on the price the Seller paid? Sorry for sounding judgmental, but who cares how much he/she has in it? For me, a big part of the fun is the backstory of finding an amazing car in an unlikely place, but I couldn’t care less how much the seller paid for it or how much they will make upon the sale…. That being said, it is a really cool bus!

      9
  5. jeff

    WOW – just WOW – what a incredible find – it’s condition – amazing – would love to have it!

    7
  6. ccrvtt

    Howard brings up an excellent point: What would you do with money? This is the very basis of a market economy and the concept and its ramifications have been bandied about by the BF community endlessly.

    Sure, I want a Hemi Cuda convertible. Who wouldn’t? The financial considerations aside, I’d still want to drive the thing. And thus decrease its ‘value’ immediately. That’s why cars as investments are, for me, a total bust.

    For some the mere possession of the thing satisfies the materialistic urge. For others burning rubber is the only thing that matters. For the money-challenged among us the wanting will have to suffice.

    I can envision a couple of indeterminate age, he with a full beard, she with long hair pulled into a pony tail, both clad in plaid flannel shirts, jeans, and hiking boots, parking this vehicle near a mountain stream. Waking with the sunrise they fire up the propane stove and cook themselves a breakfast of trout and scrambled eggs.

    This van doesn’t belong in a collection.

    16
    • Dave

      …trying to recapture that Woodstock vibe 50 years later?

      3
    • moosie moosie

      Hey ccrvtt, That’d be what I’d do with it, use it for its designed purpose, but no trout, bacon for me please. Camping and touring. I would investigate some kind of way to make it more interstate friendly, speed wise. living on the road would suit me just fine. Racking up miles would not bother me at all.

      6
  7. r s

    It looks like a toaster, it’s slightly faster than the toaster, and it’s worth as much as the company that MAKES toasters.

    I suspect that this vehicle holds both historic and nostalgic value, and may end up in the collection of a nice German guy who had one as a young adult and has since made the big bucks. I hope it does, and I hope he enjoys having it.

    4
    • Angel Cadillac Diva

      I remember back in the late ’60s my BIL had a red bus. Since he was a carpenter by trade, he redid the interior into a camper. Not that they ever used it as a camper, that I can remember. After all the interior work was done, it got traded in for a new 1970 Camaro.

      2
  8. chrlsful Member

    big ticket item. I too like the rack (immaculate interior)! The pop top seems useless beyond ventilation, glad they evolved beyond this. Thanks, Jeff, a real find (for some1 wealthy).

    1
  9. doug edwards

    The millenials have a cult following for these. With upgrades like disc brakes, rack & pinion steering, powerful engine, & regeared transmission they move with traffic quite well. As an investment vehicle, I see this as a good one as the potential buyers are actually ramping up.

    2
  10. David Mika

    Ah yes, moves with traffic quite well and then along comes a crosswind.

    4
    • ken tilly

      I had a ’62 with twin opening windscreens, drove it for thousands of miles in Africa, and never had a problem with crosswinds.

      5
  11. Lance Nord

    The reality is that for half the price that this vehicle will sell, you can purchase a modern camper trailer with more space and far more amenities to pull behind your soccer mom RAV-4. Bonus: unlike this Westfalia, you can actually make it to your destination in the mountains before the weekend is over.

    This is a great conversation piece, and as such, should probably have a place in someone’s car collection or a car museum rather than burning oil and backing up traffic.

    7
    • Bob McK Member

      Lance, are you an old car enthusiast? Anyone wanting this would probably not be seen driving a RAV-4. It is kind of like comparing a Rolls Royce to a scooter. Fortunately everyone likes different things. That is what makes this so much fun.

      7
  12. matthew B steele

    If I ever win big in the lottery I’m doing to have my very own museum and one of these would probably be in it along with a lot of other stuff that I really love.. but could never afford .This vehicle does not deserve to be locked away in somebody’s garage and nobody ever gets to experience it.. we all have wonderful memories of the cars of the sixties

    4
  13. jim lee

    I sold mine in 1990 to a doctor from Omaha for $1500.. I was the second owner.

    2
  14. steve

    As an owner of a Campmobile (much newer at 1984) I totally understand the attraction of these. Mine has gone over 400,000 miles and most of those were just fun or on the way to fun and that’s where this one fails. It would NOT be fun to drive this and rack up the miles along with the risk of damage/loss. I also have a Sprinter van which I have used for road trips and camping. MUCH better vehicle but it is not the same trip! The VW puts you, and most of the people you meet, in a different mood. Sure, some of those are the people stuck behind you on long grades where they’re blowing the horn and gesturing that you’re “#1”, but most of it is fantastic.. The fact that you really can’t or shouldn’t use this for what it was made for makes it a non-starter. A lot of people want these or buy these THINKING you get the lifestyle that goes with it. I take 3 months off each year and have driven mine in 49 states and 7 Provinces. Do you want to take it for your two week vacation to spend half the time in 2nd gear climbing hills and the rest of the time under the thing fixing the latest problem? If I had the money this would bring, I’d buy it and head out come spring for Prudhoe Bay or Labrador. Covered in mud and bugs with camping permits hanging from the mirror is what this van all about. It is now too valuable to be used. Kinda sad, really…

    6
  15. David Brown

    I was just at a Chevy dealer a bottom of the line new truck was 50 grand It will be driven for 5 years and be worth 4 grand This would be worth buying and driving those 5 years and get your money back out of it Free driving girls

    1
    • Mike W H

      Except if you had one back then (I did) the last line would read, “Driving, free girls”

      I did and they were.

  16. Paul R

    I remember one of these with flowers all over and on the back ” 0 to 60 in fifteen minutes.”

    1
  17. Superdessucke

    Oh dear this is going to get expensive. Amazed that the former hippies, who now teach us all about social justice, are willing and able to spend the equivalent of 4 years income of a poor family in the U.S. for a toy vehicle. Peace and love, brothers and sisters!

    5
    • Mountainwoodie

      Superd:

      I dont think any “social justice/former hippies” are buying these. Based on what I have seen at BJ and other auctions, the folks buying these are the very folks who drove by the bus going 40 on the freeway, flipping them off as the wind blew through their crewcuts :) yelling Nixon’s The One ! ;)

      1
  18. stillrunners Stillrunners Member

    Just don’t recall my uncle’s 1967 having the pop top but everything else just like this one. He bought it new….was the pop top optional ?

  19. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Was the pop top an option on the camper ? My uncle bought one new in 1967 with everything this one has – just don’t remember it having a pop top ?

    • Mountainwoodie

      Some had pop tops, some didnt….just slicktops

  20. canadainmarkseh Member

    When I was a kid and we were heading out camping we’d see these along the way. The driver would be white knuckling the steering wheel calling out to the little engine to give him just a little more power. A total look of stress on his face as his little bus crawled it’s way up the hill. We’d get to the camp ground and an hour and a half later you’d see the sweat soaked driver crawl out from behind the wheel looking like he should kiss the ground for having made it. This guy would not enjoy his weekend because he new the he’d once again have to brave the road in his little POS bus to get home well after dark when all the other campers had been home for hours. Ya this has all the nostalgia of a wet blanket covered in sand and dog turds. Yes it’s a cute little bus in great shape but you couldn’t give it to me I sure wouldn’t pay 35 large for it. If you buy This bus the day after that stressful drive home your going say to yourself what the f@#% was I thinking and now what do I do with it. No thanks…!

    3
  21. Bob McK Member

    There are no hills here.. No problem.

    2
  22. jimmy the orphan

    My thinking is along the same lines Howard A’s is. these things are bringing over the moon $$. But Fads have a habit of passing. So now’s the time to sell. If he can get 40+grand for it great ! At least this ones Cherry. there’s been rust buckets on here for the same ask $$. Later…………………….JIMMY

    2
  23. Chris Munn

    I watched Paul Hollywood (judge on great British bake off) drive one of these in Germany recently. He cooked up a feed of VW brand sausages…complete with part number…before retiring the night.

  24. Superdessucke

    Will it go into the six figures? I’m not trying to be a smarty butt, I really don’t know. Thanks!

  25. SEAN

    Sorry, even though I’m 60, I never got bitten by the VW “bug” (pun intended).
    The only product I ever cared for was a ’74 (?) Scirocco my neighbor bought.

    • Dickie F.

      We grew up exploring in a 48 Fleetline, a 55 Tri five and later a 59 Desoto.
      I was aged 0 to 10yrs.
      My wife however, born some 10 years later, her family had the 66 VW kombi bus. She often spoke about their Southern African trips, with the cousins included.
      The bus took them from the Southern Garden Route through the tropical east coast and often returning south through the Namid Desert. Easily covering the 3000 miles in the 6 week summer vacation. And if you know a little about Southern African landscape, that was a lot of mountain passes, incredible scenery, camping opportunities and beaches. They saw more of Africa and its wildlife than we ever did and we had the powerful V8 luxury car.

      3
  26. bobhess Member

    Owned two of these… a used ’77 bought for $7,000 and a new ’84 water cooled for $22,000, both with the full Westfalia camper package. Almost 90,000 miles on the ’77 and 86,000 on the ’84. Minimum problems, all over the country in them, and had a ball. This one is as good as you will ever see in original form.

    1
  27. Oilyhands

    I love seeing the eBay pictures, especially the original window sticker. Looking at this should give all the haters some fodder to grumble about how expensive these vehicles have become. This VW is a truly gorgeous time capsule.

    1
  28. bobhess Member

    Me thinks Canada guy is just ticked he and his friends slept out in the rain under a wet blanket while out of breath, sweaty guy was dry and warm in his VW van. Been there, done both….. but the older I got the better looking the VW campers got.

    • canadainmarkseh Member

      No we we slept comfortably in a holiday trailer with full amenities. And we’d get up and ride our trials bikes “ not trail bikes “ off into the wilderness. I saw a great deal of the Canadian back country encountered plenty of wild life and had a great childhood. By the way try hauling a 22’ holiday trailer 3 bikes, 3 kids, mom and dad, and the family dog out to the camp ground with your VW bus, and we’d still pass that bus on the hills. My dad had a 74 ford 1/2 ton 360 cid motor on propane, and he drove to work in a 69 VW beetle. My first car was a 67 VW beetle so we as a family were not VW haters.

      • canadainmarkseh Member

        As I recall it’s not that hard to pass sweaty bus guy when he’s chugging along at a blistering 50 kph up that hill while everyone else is going 100 to 110 kph we could get up those hills at about 90 kph. The trick is all in the gearing a 4:10 rear gear ratio on that ford. Back then propane sold at 15 cents a litre where as gas was at 50 cents a litre, so pretty cheep to go camping in those days. Just my humble opinion.

  29. RoughDiamond Member

    This whole VW trend has not registered with me, but I get it that there are many VW enthusiasts out there. If I were bidding I would want to see pictures of the top popped up to know that it does operate as it should.

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