Build or Buy: Bus Edition

It’s been a minute since we’ve featured an aircooled VW and what better model than the iconic Microbus. While we don’t expect Volkswagen to show another version of the I.D. Buzz at the Frankfurt Auto Show this week (although anything’s possible), here are two busses to check out if you’re in the market.

Argument: Build
Article: 1961 23-Window Deluxe Microbus

Perhaps the most sought-after model, the 23-window deluxe models are not only rare, they also fetch a hefty price. This very rough-around-the-edges ’61 is no exception.

This Bus has rust everywhere. The roof, the sides, the undercarriage. We hope you’re a welder or know someone who is, cause you’ll be adding in a lot of fresh metal.

So why this Bus? To start, it has most of it’s (rusty) parts. Comparing it to another ’61, there’s just a lot more there. Second, it’s a genuine Deluxe. More and more restorers are converting standard models to boost their bus’s value. And finally, the 23 window models are just freaking cool.

Hold on to your wallet: the seller is asking $35,000. And while that’s a LOT of money, a well-restored Deluxe Microbus can hit six figures in value. The van is in Seattle, Washington, and you can see all the details on thesamba.com classified ad.

Argument: Buy
Article: 1967 21-Window Deluxe Microbus

So here’s a find: a decent and driveable Deluxe Bus for a pretty achievable price. Well, a price that’s achievable at this writing. This Splitty is currently sitting at $25,000 on bringatrailer.com. And we don’t expect it to stay this low for long. But yes, this  Bus is actually less than our “Build” one above. That’s never happened before.

And what do you get for $25,000? A completely complete van. Sure it’s a little rough around the edges. There are some rust bubbles in the paint. The middle bench is missing. And there’s a rather unfortunate rear bumper mod.

But it’s a runner. If you’re looking for a Type 2 that you don’t have to worry (too much) about, this is a good option. You could easily run errands, commute to work, and just enjoy this little guy, unlike, say, this $160,000 (not a typo) one.

If you’re looking for nice runabout Bus like this, act fast. The auction ends this Wednesday. This ’67 is in Winchester, Virginia.