• Stunning ‘Split window’ Kombi camper
• Unique VW Kombi ‘Race Transporter’
They once got their wheels dirty, but Volkswagen’s once humble Kombis have now become increasingly collectible in ‘white-collar’ circles, both in Australia and overseas, with two great and very different examples crossing the block at Shannons Melbourne Autumn Classic Auction on May 8.
The show-stopper of the VW duo is a former ‘barn find’ 1967 Split Window Kombi that today is light years away from its humble VW Transporter origins.
Fully restored to a high standard, this Australian-delivered Kombi with a campervan conversion was discovered in a shed some 15 years ago and underwent a ground-up restoration over a five-year period.
The Kombi is finished in the glamorous period two-tone colours of cream over sky blue, while its interior has been completely refurbished, with the front seats upholstered in red vinyl.
The camper has also been fully refurbished mechanically, with its reconditioned 1600cc engine stroked to 1750cc and is now fed by twin Weber carburettors, while the original drum brakes now have a hidden booster.
Since its resurrection, the Kombi has done several long-distance trips including a run to Byron Bay, plus weekend cruises to closer beaches. With the increasing world values of early Split Window VW Kombis, it is expected to find willing bidders in the $64,000-$72,000 range.
Also a Kombi, but completely different, is the 1976 Volkswagen 'Modified' Race Transporter that was professionally constructed by Wolfsburg Automotive in Geelong, Victoria for the VW’s current owner, an avid car collector and historic racer.
Built over a 12-month period at a reported cost of more than $55,000, the wheelbase of the former VW Single Cab Utility was extended by 1295m, making it capable of carrying many small sports cars or open wheelers on its 4.0 x 1.65 metre flat bed, while the Kombi’s body structure reinforced with a hand-made alloy framed canopy with drop-down sides.
Other noteworthy items include tyre racks, a winch and a compressor, with air suspension enabling the vehicle to be lowered for easier access via a set of custom ramps.
Mechanically upgraded with a 2-litre engine, the Kombi is beautifully presented in period-style triple-tone white, silver and Sage Green paintwork with orange stripes, while the tidy interior is trimmed in cream and black upholstery, with seating for three.
A definite star of the paddock at any historic race meet or classic car show, the Volkswagen is the perfect way to transport any car to and from events in style. It is offered with a Victorian Engineer’s Certificate and is expected to sell in the $46,000-$54,000 range.
Another VW in the May 8 Melbourne auction is a stylish left-hand drive 1971 Karmann Ghia Coupe presented in tidy condition that is expected to sell in the $14,000-$18,000 range.