Split-win­dow Kombi fetches big money


TWO VOLKSWAGEN KOMBIS – A RE­FUR­BISHED SPLIT -win­dow camper and a race car trans­porter – had mixed for­tunes at last month’s Shan­nons’ au­tumn auc­tion in Mel­bourne, Aus­tralia.

A for­mer ‘barn find’ 1967 Split Win­dow Kombi reached $Au67,000.

Fully re­stored to a high stan­dard, the Aus­tralian-de­liv­ered Kombi with a camper­van con­ver­sion was dis­cov­ered in a shed 15 years ago and was given a five-year, ground-up restora­tion.

The Kombi is fin­ished in 1960s-style two-tone cream over sky blue paint­work, and its in­te­rior has been com­pletely re­fur­bished, with the front seats up­hol­stered in red vinyl.

It also got a full me­chan­i­cal re­fur­bish­ment, with its re­con­di­tioned 1600cc engine stroked to 1750cc and fit­ted with twin We­ber car­bu­ret­tors. The orig­i­nal drum brakes were up­graded with a hid­den booster.

Since its res­ur­rec­tion, the Kombi has done sev­eral longdis­tance trips and shorter week­end cruises.

Wolfs­burg Au­to­mo­tive, based in Gee­long, Vic­to­ria, built the unique 1976 Volkswagen race car trans­porter for an avid car col­lec­tor and his­toric mo­tor­sport com­peti­tor.

The project took 12 months and re­put­edly cost more than $Au55,000. Wolfs­burg ex­tended the wheel­base of the for­mer VW sin­gle cab util­ity by 1295mm to en­able it to carry small sports cars or open wheeler rac­ing cars on its four by 1.65 me­tre flatbed.

The Kombi’s body struc­ture was re­in­forced with a hand­made al­loy-framed canopy with drop-down sides.

Wolfs­burg fit­ted the truck with tyre racks, a winch and a com­pres­sor, and an air sus­pen­sion sys­tem en­abled the ve­hi­cle to be low­ered for eas­ier load­ing and un­load­ing us­ing a set of cus­tom ramps.

The Kombi was up­graded me­chan­i­cally with a 2.0-litre engine, and was fin­ished in pe­riod-style triple-tone white, sil­ver and Sage Green paint­work with orange stripes. The in­te­rior has cream and black up­hol­stery and can seat three.

The VW was of­fered with a Vic­to­rian Engi­neer’s Cer­tifi­cate, but failed to sell at auc­tion.

Shan­nons says Volkswagen’s once hum­ble Kombi has be­come in­creas­ingly col­lectible and com­mands high prices at auc­tion in Aus­tralia and glob­ally.

Top left: Aus­tralian auc­tion house Shan­nons sold this fully-re­stored for­mer barn find 1967 Split Win­dow VW Kombi camper­van with up­graded me­chan­i­cals for $Au67,000 at its May sale in Mel­bourne. Top right: In­te­rior of the re­stored Kombi is in im­mac­u­late...

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