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Restored Volkswagen Samba campervan to go under the hammer

Published 22 May 2017

A rare 1959 Volkswagen 23-window Samba campervan is heading to auction. The camper, which has been restored, is part of the Classic Car Auctions sale in Warwickshire on 10 June.

The right hand drive, manual example is believed to be one of just a handful on UK roads and looks like it has just rolled off the line at the German factory.

Originally dispatched to South Africa, the camper spent the first four decades of its life in warmer climes before being imported into the UK. Having been neglected for some years, the new owner spent the next three years of his life restoring the camper.

Work included stripping the Volkswagen back to bare metal and removing every nut and bolt. In fact, the owner went to extreme lengths to make sure every part was either ‘new old stock’ or original – a process that included sourcing semaphores from the USA.

1959 Volkswagen 23 Window Samba Campervan (2)

A cabinet maker by trade, the owner restored the original wood work using a Devon interior he bought before owning the Camper, also replacing the chrome, interior trim and window frames, alongside a mechanical overhaul and exterior respray.

The only deviation from originality is the 1600 twin port engine built by Bear VW Services, Birmingham, who also rebuilt the gearbox, which allows the camper to cruise comfortably at 65mph.

Finished in Beige White and Sealing Wax Red, it has just 2100 miles on the clock since restoration. It is expected to fetch between £45,000 and £55,000.

Simon Langsdale, classic car consignor at CCA, says, ‘A right-hand drive 1959 Samba is rare enough, but combine this with an authentic Devon interior, only available in that year, and you have one very special bus.

‘How the owner managed to source all original parts is quite extraordinary, and this has to be one of the most original, restored campers anyone can find anywhere, as well as a true testament to Volkswagen appreciation.’

To find out more about the 1959 Volkswagen 23 Window Samba Campervan and CCA’s sale on 10 June at the Warwickshire Exhibition Centre, visit: www.classiccarauctions.co.uk.

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