1979-1990 T3 CAMPER
WHY WE LOVE IT It gives you more wedge for your wodge Sometimes referred to as a T25 (a UK marketing term effectively for a two-and-a-half), the wedgeshaped T3 might not have the period looks of the T1 ‘Splittie’ or T2 ‘Bay’, but it’s that bit closer to being a motorhome when it comes to fixtures and fittings. To add further confusion to the name, in the US they are known as a Vanagon, being somewhere between a van and a station wagon.
The original air-cooled versions inherited their predecessors’ engines, but later options went for water-cooled diesel and petrol engines. While high-end examples are beginning to demand higher prices, you can still nab an entry-level T3 camper in the £3000-£4000 bracket.
Major rust issues should not be ignored as repair costs can soon outstrip purchase cost.
VW filled the T3’s seams with a flexible sealant during production. Unfortunately this becomes brittle and can drop out – an invitation the tin worm just can’t resist.
None of the engine options are perfect – early air-cooled units have little power to move around the heavy bodywork, while later water-cooled plants have a set of problems all of their own, including corroded cylinder head bolts.
ENGINE 1970cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 70bhp@4200rpm TORQUE 98.6lb ft@2800rpm TOP SPEED 80mph 0-60MPH 18sec FUEL CONSUMPTION 19-23mpg TRANSMISSION RWD, four-speed manual/ three-speed auto
WHAT TO PAY CONCOURS £10,000, GOOD £7500, USABLE £3500, PROJECT £2000