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Build-A-Truck: 1957 VW Transporter

'57 Tansporter

We really don’t see these early truck versions of the VW Bus very often (that’s a whole other story that likely involves poultry, tariffs and chickens…wait, sorry, politicians) but we always find them to be interesting alternative to more conventional light duty trucks. This 1957 VW Transporter Truck is listed here on craigslist and is sitting in Williston, Vermont with a price of $6,500. There isn’t much information provided with the ad, so if you are interested please contact the owner for a viewing and/or any questions you may have.

1957 VW Transporter Cab

The owner says that the cab is in nice shape. has been covered in primer, so hopefully that means there isn’t any rust. The only areas that appear to be wearing original, or at least old paint, are the doors. The passenger’s side still wears the logo of the company that once employed it as a work truck. If I ran a handyman business, I’d want to preserve the signage and rename my business the Builder Broker Inc. so I could use this as a work truck and advertising!

'57 Tansporter back

There is also a nice tailgate and engine compartment door, but where’s the engine? These use the same engine found in the whole range of air cooled boxer 4 VW engines, so finding a replacement shouldn’t be hard.

1957 VW Transporter Project

The odometer is show just 46,500, for what that’s worth. All the original glass, seats, 5 original ’57 transporter wheels, the owner’s manual and some new parts are included. The owner will take trades or a “goooood” cash offer. VW Transporters can be really cool and it appears that the VW Transporter bubble continues to grow…




  1. Avatar photo rancho bella

    I have buddies that do these and busses…………and I don’t get the valuation.

    They are tinny, loud and slow…….and yet, people pay big bucks for them.
    Arse for every seat so they say.

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  2. Avatar photo Bobsmyuncle

    At that price it’s probably gone.

    It’s a 50 year old truck of course they are slow and tinny.

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    • Avatar photo Robert Member


      It is still listed and has been for 13 days…

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    • Avatar photo Andy Frobig

      If this is a ’57, it had a 36 or 40 hp engine and a really low-geared rear end; between that and the brakes, this would be a death trap on a modern interstate. Not to say it isn’t cool, of course! But a lot slower than an American pickup from the same time, for sure. If you don’t care about originality, it’s easy to drop a 2-liter, dual carb, 5 speed IRS and a disc brake front end into it and get something practical. In the condition it’s in now, there would hardly be a difference in expense either way. Some seat belts would be a nice upgrade too.

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      • Avatar photo Bobsmyuncle

        Death trap might be excessive there are plenty of old busses cruising the highways safely. Yeah they aren’t doing much over 65 but that’s what the right lane is for!

        Top speed is limited by the reduction boxes, using a transaxle from a later model bug or Type III will provide IRS and a higher top speed. But you’ll lose the 1 ton payload and the gearing to drag it up steep inclines.

        It is the perfect blank slate for major mods though!

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      • Avatar photo Bobsmyuncle

        I didn’t think the idea that a contemporary domestic truck was that much faster sounded right so just for kicks I did some quick Googling.

        In ’57 the Chevy 6 cylinder engine (8 came out in’ 59) got 140 HP and it weighed 3217 pounds. I found several owners stating a 50 to 60 MPH cruising speed.

        I’m tempted to address the realities of drum brakes but I’ll resist.

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      • Avatar photo Toolbox

        I daily drive my 59 truck in the summer around Detroit with a 1500sp and it is far from a near death experience, way safer than a motorcycle. If you have a clear road and carry speed through turns and exit ramps it is fine. If the brakes are maintained properly there is no issue with stopping, dirty broke wannabe hippies might have issues. I have over 15 years of seat time in this vehicle without major issue.

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      • Avatar photo anon

        @toolbox And photographed from what looks like another splitty as well!

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      • Avatar photo Toolbox

        @Anon, yes.

        From a 67 SO42

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  3. Avatar photo jimmy

    I don’t see any suspension! But its a freaking VW for $6500!

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    • Avatar photo Bobsmyuncle

      Exactly and a single cab at that. It’ll sell for asking.

      Like 0

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