Split Window 1958 Volkswagen Bus!

In terms of ratios, it seems like the Type 2 Volkswagen Bus was converted into a commercial vehicle almost as frequently as its domestic counterparts. The slab-sided panel vans appear far less frequently than the traditional passenger buses, but when they do pop up for sale, it’s not surprising to see old-school lettering like we see on this 1958 model here. The VW was apparently used as a coffee delivery truck, or possibly equipment repair, in the early days of in-home coffee service. I love how the colors are the best combination of hues possible to reflect what a coffee cup tends to resemble once a splash of cream has been added. This is a project with no engine or transmission and some rust, but it looks worthy of bringing back. Find it here on eBay with an opening bid of $12,000 and no takers yet.

No matter what the vehicle is, enthusiasts tend to love finding forgotten trucks and utility vehicles with the old-school lettering and decals of long-shuttered businesses painted onto the sides. I would even wager it drives the price higher in some cases for people who want a vehicle from a certain region or catering to a certain industry. For instance, if you find a truck like this with decals and artwork from an area race track, I can almost guarantee you the price will be higher than a vehicle that formerly ferried plumbing supplies or flowers. This VW would be desirable on its own simply for being an early model Bus, and for the panel van configuration.

Today, there is still a Pioneer Coffee Company in Washington State, which seems to be a smaller to mid-sized business (i.e., not a Starbucks) that would use a vehicle like this for regional deliveries. It’s now in Ohio, so who knows whether it has any connection to that business. If it does still exist, I would recommend that they buy this Bus immediately, because it will be the best marketing dollars they’ve ever spent. The body definitely has some rust, which seems more indicative of an Ohio vehicle than one from Washington State, and the seller notes it needs frame repairs before it is road-worthy once again.

As you can see, the edges of the body are a bit crusty, but I would live with that for a while once the frame repairs are done. The paintwork and coffee company script are spot-on for a vehicle that you never paint, simply clear-coating over the roughshod exterior. The seller is asking big money for an opening bid, especially given this Bus has rust issues and no drivetrain. If it had one versus the other – i.e., no rust or a solid engine and transmission – I would say the opening bid makes sense. Otherwise, I’d lower the starting number to a point where someone can reasonably restore this perfectly patina’d 1958 VW Bus.


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  1. angliagt angliagt Member

    Located in Litchfield,Ohio.

  2. Glenn C. Schwass Member

    That’s neat. I’d clear coat it. I like the coffee look….

    Like 2
  3. sir_mike

    Going to need a whole lot of rust repair and new panels.And no trans or mtr. Going to cost a lot to bring back to useable….sorry owner

    Like 5
  4. Luki

    It’s been on Samba for months.
    They are VW guys, they should slap a transaxle and a junk motor in it and it would sell.

    Like 4
    • Kurt

      Didn’t these also have two gear reduction boxes on each rear wheel? Looks like they are missing also but hard to tell.

      Like 2
      • Summitrunner Member

        Yup, missing the transaxle which had reduction gears on the outboard ends.
        I had a ’58 back in the 70’s. I upgraded from the original 36hp to a 52hp engine and the thing still barely hit 55mph on the highway.
        That’s an ambitious price they’re asking!

        Like 4
  5. AZVanman

    Found 2 Pioneer Coffee’s, 1 in WA, both new companies. Nothing I could see about a circa 1960 Pioneer Coffee or home service. I hate the fact that I don’t trust anyone anymore.

    Like 4
  6. Andy Frobig

    For a ’58, it’s hard to say if the no engine/transaxle is that big a downer. There can’t be more than a few dozen ’50s panels in the whole country, and you could easily throw a placeholder drivetrain in while you look for something more “period…” And once you drive it with 60 HP you’ll probably just forget about trying it with 36.

  7. bobhess bobhess Member

    There’s rare and there’s rare junk. Take your pick here. Trans was in it to get it on the trailer. This guy is really milking this deal.

    Like 6
  8. Dave

    Somewhere in the mountain of 60s electronics magazines I have is a photo of Ed Dulaney’s TV and Radio Repair VW van used to sell electronics correspondence courses popular at the time. For those familiar with vintage CB gear, Dulaney was the “D” in “D&A Electronics”, manufacturers of many popular linear amplifiers. I’ll have to look through the mags and send the photo to the admin if I can find it.

    Like 2
  9. Howard A Member

    Always good for a chuckle, these posts. I think we have a pretty good group here, BF’s seems to attract some sharp people from the hobby, that for whatever reason, can no longer participate, but still know what they’re talking about, my point is, who buys this crap? Certainly nobody here would shell ( pun intended) out ANYTHING for this junk,,but here we are, I suppose. This Mike Wolfe from American Pickers( who is turning out to be a scumbag) is making these seem priceless. I hope the pallet comes with it,,,

    Like 9
  10. YankeeTR5

    I’m with @AZVanman…..this looks contrived.
    First, gourmet coffee wasn’t a “thing” back in the day. Nor were there services for “home coffee” delivery. Folgers, Maxwell House, Farmer Bro’s…..ruled the day.

    Second, and you have to look a bit more closely, but the stenciling on the side is not worn the same as the paint its on. There are slashes of rust that should cut thru the lettering but its all intact. Looks like a nice job of patina airbrushing to me.

    I guess in the marketplace of rusted out junky project VW Vanworld, having a clapped out POS supposedly used for commercial purposes bestows hidden value.

    Like 7
  11. rancher

    ‘contrived’ lol I guarantee somebody on TheSamba.com etc will buy it and have it back on the road w/new drivetrain & polished patina logos, worth much more than 12k!

    Like 3
  12. rancher

    It’s not contrived! How did they fake the flaking paint on the passenger side? Worth 50K when they get it rebuilt and clearcoated!

    Like 3
  13. Gary

    This turd is even the right color.

    Like 2
  14. Dr Steiner

    It was likely a rotted out billboard that was shoved out in front of the (Recently formed) gourmet coffee business.
    I don’t think that Mr “They’re only original once” from Iowa would touch this heap for more than $500 worth of tetanus shots.

  15. Gray Wolf

    Could be a coffee service for business offices or restaurant service.

    Like 1
  16. t-bone BOB

    Located in:
    Litchfield, Ohio

    • Mike

      Yeah, we know. The location was mentioned at the top of the comments.

      Like 1
  17. MTBorst

    This would be an awesome fix up, leaving the original sign on it

  18. chrlsful

    lub da (1st gen) ‘4 dors’, the the ‘no windows’ (in the vans, all co) and the ‘8dors’ (same – 1st gen all companies’) as they are so different. Have not seen them in the vedub tho. Most vans – not so interesting after 1st gen (even chebby – Greenbriar and the “G” – actually made simultaneously a short while – ’64 &5). This one’s great.

    • Gray Wolf

      Yeah, what he said!! ???

      Like 1
  19. rancher

    I’ve sold 3 squareback transmissions that went into buses because they have hiway gears & they can lower the bus better. It will end up with a 2.0 liter + engine & squareback transmission as most of these guys like to do 75mph not 55mph!

  20. t-bone BOB

    Oct 02, 2021
    Starting bid:
    US $12,000.00
    [ 0 bids ]

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