HomePick of the DayPick of the Day: 1972 VW camper bus equipped with Porsche power

Pick of the Day: 1972 VW camper bus equipped with Porsche power

The tall roofline makes it more spacious inside, and it’s fully equipped for traveling


The Volkswagen Type 2 was and forever will be the quintessential camper bus, beloved by hippies and other counter-culture types, veterans of a zillion Grateful Dead festivals and honored guests at any VW collector car gathering. 

The Pick of the Day is something of an oddball, a 1972 VW Type 2 camper bus that has been enhanced with such things as a 2.0-liter Porsche 914 flat-4 engine, a large solar panel on top, and a tall composite roof to boost interior space. 

VW, Pick of the Day: 1972 VW camper bus equipped with Porsche power, ClassicCars.com Journal

“This is a truly awesome VW Bus that is powered by a Porsche engine, rides on Porsche wheels which are wrapped in new tires,” says the Kentwood, Michigan, dealer advertising the VW on ClassicCars.com. “It has a full-size bed and plenty of other cool features.”

Vintage campers and other such outdoors vehicles have become enormously popular among younger collectors because of their fun usability, either for getting away from it all or joining in at Burning Man-style gatherings of the clan.

This bus is of the second-generation of VW microbuses known as “bay windows” because of their broad, curved, one-piece windshields, compared with the two-piece split glass of the iconic first-gen buses, which are more desirable and thus more valuable.


But this camper would be more practical for cross-country travel than the originals.  The air-cooled Porsche engine was factory rated at 99 horsepower, still not a whole lot but certainly beefier than the 60 horsepower of the 1.6-liter VW original, making it more viable for modern highway driving and such things as climbing steep grades.

The engine was rebuilt five years ago, the seller says, and it runs strong.

The dealer describes the VW as an “adventure bus,” and while the title of the ad refers to it as a Westfalia, I’m not too certain that it was actually built by the German company, which was retained by Volkswagen for camper conversions and generally uses pop-up roof designs among its signature features rather than a lofty roof addition like this one.


Still, this camper looks like a great way to hit the open road and get back to nature in style and comfort.  It’s also quite attractive in its unique repaint and graphic treatment, and the bright chrome VW emblem on its nose.  

“Originally coming from Utah, this bus is painted in a sweet turquoise color which is complemented by a white extended height top,” the seller says in the ad. “The increased height of the roof makes the interior significantly more spacious and leaves plenty of room for the full-size bed, recently replaced stove, sink and refrigerator.

VW, Pick of the Day: 1972 VW camper bus equipped with Porsche power, ClassicCars.com Journal

“A solar panel has been mounted on the roof which supplies power for the auxiliary battery. Also installed is an aftermarket audio system complete with Bluetooth compatible radio.”

The asking price for this interesting VW camper is $29,900.

To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.


  1. Does anyone proof read these blurbs ? That is a VW transporter engine. It’s presence in the U. S. 914 was the main source of criticism for badging it a “porsche” Last week a 55 chevy wagon was called a 210 Bel Aire on an internet auction. No such thing ever existed. Those are two seperate trim levels.

    • OK, yeah, the original 914 engine was sourced from the VW Type 4 way back when. But if you read more carefully, you will see that this 2.0 engine actually came from a Porsche 914, and it was transplanted into this bus, which most likely had a 1.6-liter VW engine as original equipment. That is what the seller says and there is no reason to doubt it.

  2. I enjoy Bob Golfen’s write up’s as well as the other writers on Classic Car. They can’t be responsible for all the facts presented in the ads where these cars are picked from. From what I have seen, they do catch many mistakes and over-statements. Realize that you may catch some they do not, or one’s they have chosen not to mention. There is always something to compliment rather than criticize and you will feel better inside too.

  3. How much typically is the cost to transform a 1974 VW camper to a Porsche engine? I need an engine and cant fine a VW engine….

  4. Exactly the same type 4 engine as in my 1972 Bus. These engines were fitted in the VW 411, Porsche 914 and 1972 – 1979 VW type 2 Bus.


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