Thanks to my newly acquired authorship, I can tell you a bit more about my passion of anything automotive, mainly german. In this first installment, I'll introduce the quirkiest vehicle that I currently pay taxes on.
I've only been in the Eurovan 'scene' for 2-3 months now, as my wife and I were looking for a way to get to New Mexico. She'll be 8 months pregnant at that point, so flying is not an option. Driving is a much more rational decision. Don't worry, I already purchased, read and highlighted passages from "How to deliver a baby in a Wal-Mart parking lot for Dummies". The diagrams really help.
Anyway, like most of you, I had been scouring CL, cars.com, autotrader, you name it, for quite some time. I was not out looking for a full camper, as those are usually really expensive. I wanted a 93 MV with the Westfalia pop-top. Missed out on some good deals, chickened-out on some too good to be true stuff, until I found this guy:
It's a 1995 long-wheel base Eurovan that was outfitted with a pop-top, full kitchen and cabinet by Winnebago. VW did not sell the Eurovan in the US between 94 and 98, so these are somewhat of a rare bird. Especially when fitted with the most jalop feature:
A 5-speed transmission! Well, when I got it, it had a 3-speed and marbles and coins transmission. Got a really good deal on the van since no matter how loud the previous owner set the radio, I could hear the awesome party in the transmission.
I lucked out on a good used tranny on CL. Brought it to a great shop, (Keith at KMH motors in Lowell, MA, highly recommended), and I'm back on the road, at a full 70MPH with the wind pushing behind. The 2.5L 5-cylinder engine has good low-end torque, but its 109 HP are struggling to move 4800lbs of gray melamine at highway speeds.
Next steps include: Clean the heck out of it. Remove the purple window tint. Install the rear bumper back and paint the trim with some SEM trim paint. Put some fresh tires on some OEM 16x7 steelies (rated at 1980lbs each!). Change the fresh water pump and hoses. Service the propane system. And 5,000 other things that I won't bore you with.
Next installment: What kids do to your car hobby: The art of stacking shit on your project E30