A Happy New Year, with a Finnish Canadian Beauty!

7 01 2017

Hope you all had a great start into 2017! Here comes a wonderful bus spotted during a ten-day-vacation in Finland in July 2016. We spent the first week on the southern coast near the small town of Porvoo.  Flying to Finland and taking a rental car turned out to be cheaper than doing the trip from Berlin with our kombi, and the two-day drive through Poland and the Baltic countries would have been unfair towards our one-year-old. So we cruised through Finland in a boring but comfortable Toyota Auris station wagon. I spotted the early bay window below in a driveway of a house on one of the trips around Porvoo. The owner kindly interrupted his dinner and came out for some kombi talk. It is a 1971 T2a which he imported from Canada some years ago. The campervan cionversion is all original Westfalia. The air inlets at the back (not crescent-shaped any more) and the larger rear lights show it is actually already one of the T2a/T2b hybrids which were built around 1971/72. The color is most likely Sierra yellow (VW color code L11H). Extra side indicators only in the back, not the front. Thought so far that models for the US had both – perhaps Canada was different. This beauty made my evening back in Finland. Hope you enjoy it, too!

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Best Motion Picture 2013 Staring: A Kombi Van!

26 02 2013

On Monday the movie Argo by Ben Affleck won the Oscar for best motion picture. Apparently loosely based on a true story, it describes how six US embassy staff were smuggled out of Teheran and rescued by the Canadian secret service and the CIA during the hostage crisis in 1980. Seems like their cover was to shoot a movie and everyone was shuttled back and forth through Teheran in a – Tadah! – Volkswagen kombi. Looks like a sierra yellow and white US spec T2b microbus. Below are some snapshots from a senior member of my kombi scouting team (thanks!).
PS: For the movie aficionados, here is the link to the wikipedia page for the movie: Interesting summary about the historical background, including detailed listings of the historical inaccuracies. Still it seems to be an exciting movie.

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Early Bay Westfalia Camper

28 09 2012

A beautiful T2a spotted a week ago, parking around the corner in Berlin. You don’t see these often any more. Should be from between 1967 and 1972. Looks like a Westfalia camper with an interior layout where the sink/stove unit is behind the passenger seat. I think the fold-up roof of the early bay Westfalias had the hinges in the front and the luggage bay in the back, as with this one. Louvered windows on both sides, and two separate front seats, with a walkway in between. The green 1969 Westfalia of Classic Campers has had a front bench seat and no walkway to the back. Perhaps differences between different generations of the early bay campers? The color is probably sierra yellow (L11H) and pastel white (L90D). Following Rolf Stephan Badura’s bay window color code overview (compiled from the original Volkswagen sales brochures), this color was only available between 1971 and 1972. I have always been more of a T2b fan, but I start to like the early bays more and more. For some more pictures of this one click to my Flickr photo stream.