Hotter than lava lamps and cooler than colour TV, for 63 years the Volkswagen Kombi has been the choice of families to escape suburbia, hippies to circumnavigate the globe, surfers in search of the perfect wave and as a commercial workhorse delivering bread, flowers or frozen fish.
If someone living under a rock needs proof that anyone from teenagers to 70-something’s are still awe-struck with the Kombi, tape their eye lids to their eye brows, sit them down and show them the current crop of social media and TV adverts enlisting this timeless classics universal appeal to sell the dream #vanlife.
Companies from soft drink makers to holiday creators and even telecom providers (that was a Splitty in the “keep the rabbits out” Big Pond ad) want to be associated with the Kombi lifestyle and its ideas of freedom, youth and the 60’s slogan “it’s not just a vehicle ... more a way of life”.
Considered the most collectible Kombi of all time, the well-appointed Deluxe Microbus or “Samba” was designed with comfortable Alpine touring in mind, marketed with the slogan, “Every seat is a window seat!” and features 8 famous tinted Plexiglas panoramic windows with a “Safari” style windscreen, a retractable sunroof, double chromium-plated ornamental band, chrome bumper, sill and rear-engine vent trim, pivoting doors in place of sliding, bullet indicator lenses, handsome two tone paint, rear internal luggage rack, removable rear seats, dash clock, and a handy passenger foot-rest.
We’re excited to offer this one of a kind and simply superbly executed 1965 Volkswagen Camper 21 Window Samba, customised to be the ultimate tourer.
Commissioned by perhaps the UK’s foremost classic restoration house also famous for preparing classic race cars like Fangio’s C-Type for Goodwood, the customisation of this car is wideranging and incredibly detailed, making it among the best in the world.
Starting life as a LHD Type 2 Samba, this VW was constructed in late April 1965 and delivered to its first owner in May of 1965 who seems to have lived in Salzburg, Austria. A copy of the original German registration document shows two further owners in the Salzburg area up to 1993.
By 2002 this Samba had found its way to the UK by which time it had been painted Blue. At this time the vehicle was in a very solid, but tired, condition and was then offered for sale in 2004 when it was acquired by JD Classics on behalf of a long-term client with instructions to undertake a complete concours level restoration and extensive program of bespoke customisation.
The restoration works involved a complete strip down to the bare shell, which was bead blasted, and refurbishment or replacement of every single component.
In summary, the works included: A 2 litre fast road specification engine with all synchromesh 5 speed gearbox, all round disc brakes (ventilated at the front) and engine oil cooler, air suspension with adjustable ride height, incorporating individual wheel by wheel adjustment for optimal vehicle levelling when camping on slopes / uneven ground.
Chromed wide rim sports wheels, a total custom interior installation by Interiormotive incorporating a retrim in the finest materials - the front seats fitted with integral head restraints, captain’s chair armrests and reclining with fore, aft and side adjustment.
The passenger seat rotates 180 degrees, there’s an insert for optional bench style front seat to accommodate 3 passengers up front, full panoramic sun roof in fire retardant material, roof integrated solar panels for battery charging, correct timber base roof rack, pull out double bed with air inatable mattress providing additional width over the standard Rock’n’Roll style bed, vacuum cleaner, cooker and kitchen sink, period look dashboard mounted AM/FM/ MP3 Radio and separate rear compartment radio unit with amplier, woofer, fader and balance control for numerous surround sound effect high output speakers.
Separate USB port, satellite navigation, electrically raised pop-up LCD / LED Television with remote control and digital alpine media receiver with Alpine DVD / Video DVD CD / CD Multi-changer, built-in fridge with external vents and extra capacity on-board water tanks for fresh water and grey water with level indicators and cut off valves. Grey water has electrically operated discharge system for ease of emptying into drains etc.
Bespoke side hatch for re-filling fresh water, 240 V/12 V internal power sockets and finally numerous concealed-opening wood covered compartments for various storage including large capacity gas cylinder cupboard.
The attention to detail during the build was incredible, requiring more than 5000 man hours, to a cost in excess of a million dollars today.
Such was the scope and standard of the customisation work that the van was extensively featured in an edition of VolksWorld magazine.
Following completion of the work in 2013 the camper has seen minimal use and has been meticulously maintained by JD Classics and specialists ever since and is in excellent running condition today.
As such it presents in 'as new' condition and offers a truly unique opportunity to acquire one of, if not the, best VW camper van in the world.
Accompanied by a full photographic record of the works involved, handbook outlining how to use all of the special features and three lever-arch files of history this is a special Camper.
Ready to drive off the showroom floor and perfect timing to take you on your next Australian adventure, there’s never been a better time to invest in and enjoy a classic like this.