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    Thread: 1990 VW Syncro DoKa (Subagon w/SVX Engine)

    1. Member DrewSXR's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 07:46 PM #1
      1990 VW Syncro DoKa

      http://blogs.insideline.com/roadtest...doka.html#more



      Quote Originally Posted by Inside Line
      Not too long ago, Senior Editor Josh Jacquot drove an Xplore Toyota FJ. When I saw this beast parked down in the parking lot, several staffers and myself wondered if we could ever get something like this as a long term vehicle. I'm a big fan of adventure camping, especially if it involves a unique vehicle.

      The Xplore FJ struck a chord with me. Though I take a lot of crap from other staffers and friends, I have a long standing interest in T3 Vanagon campers; especially the Syncro variants. To drill down even further, I really like the bizarre Syncro DoKa. You're probably asking why the Vanagon, and probably like a lot of you and your passion for a vehicle, it started as a kid. Growing up my friend's family took us out camping on California's central coast in their Syncro Camper and I loved it.

      It gets even more weird after the jump.

      You might say, "If you love 'em so much why don't I buy one?" Things in the Vanagon world are actually quite expensive. I've seen restored and upgraded Synco campers go for upwards of $124k. Yeah, that is crazy. I love adventure, but I have to pay for my house and food, too.

      Though the prices are high, I often browse the interwebs in search of a good deal. Though they are very rare, I have found several Syncro DoKas in the high $30k range. I even found one that has a Subaru 3.3 liter SVX engine in it! At some point I'll buy a Vanagon Camper because I love adventuring deep into the wild and those boxy campers from my childhood. I'm just not in a big rush to buy one. Besides definitely can't afford the tricked out $124,000 version.

      When it comes down to it, I think cars/trucks are supposed to be fun. These unique birds in my opinion epitomize that notion. I bet just about every one of you has an interest in some unusual/unpopular vehicle. What is your dark automotive secret?





      Gotta admit, pretty cool unique engine and engine swap vehicle combo!

    2. Senior Member ratdub's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 09:12 PM #2
      want!

    3. Member Bryoc's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 09:16 PM #3
      that thing is awesome

    4. Member ken_mag's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 09:49 PM #4
      The subie conversion is a nice upgrade to the Vanagon. We did an NA EJ22 swap in our 2wd and couldn't be happier. Would love to do a syncro/TDI swap, but now we're talking $$..

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      04-08-2011 10:09 PM #5
      Words cannot describe my lust for a Syncro Vanagon. They hold their value almost as well as Land Rover Defender 90's and possibly as well as an E30 M3.

    6. Member Troike's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 10:35 PM #6
      I've bought & sold aircooled Vanagons for anywhere from $24 (serious) to $1100.
      Never knew just how much aircooled VWs were valued at until I got into the Van scene.
      prices for Westphalia, Synchro, and the rare (single/double-cab etc) models truly are insane, however.
      Any Westie or watercooled Vanagon is easily $4-8k. Syncro? 150% more.
      Grey-market import? Triple it.

      Probably won't own another Vanagon, but they are a bucket o' fun
      Handle amazingly well (RR with transaxle + awesome visibility), parts are all over, and if you're rich, you can always swap in the Subaru, Porsche, etc motors (in case 67 hp leaving West Germany isn't enough for some reason)









      my old vans (non-syncro of course)
      Last edited by Troike; 04-08-2011 at 10:41 PM.
      << so it Hz >>

      Quote Originally Posted by A.Wilder View Post
      for every good post in this thread there are 10 illiterate people mashing buttons on their keyboard
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    7. Member VAG Admirer's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 10:37 PM #7
      Quote Originally Posted by Diamond Dave View Post
      Words cannot describe my lust for a Syncro Vanagon. They hold their value almost as well as Land Rover Defender 90's and possibly as well as an E30 M3.
      If you look at the prices Go Westy is getting, they hold their value much better than both the above listed vehicles. A Weekender sold for $119,569.15! Not even a Westfalia.
      Another VW thread derailed by one in a long list of insecure TCL tools.

    8. Member 251's Avatar
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      04-08-2011 11:56 PM #8
      Subaru engines and Vanagons are a very good combo. Here'd my old '83.5 Sunroof GL with an EJ22 conversion. I believe I paid $2k for it already converted. On the down side, I liked the Subaru engine so much I sold all my VWs and am now on my second Subaru...




    9. Member iamsuperdan's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 01:57 AM #9
      Vanagons and their Doka counterparts are an engine swap away from awesome.

      The Subaru swaps are great, but I prefer sticking with VAG power.

      Here's my former Doka 2wd. 2003 TDI engine. bigger turbo, upgraded injectors and tuning, rebuilt/regeared tranny. Wide tires, no power steering. A blast to drive.


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      04-09-2011 11:59 AM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by scottg View Post
      If you look at the prices Go Westy is getting, they hold their value much better than both the above listed vehicles. A Weekender sold for $119,569.15! Not even a Westfalia.
      In all fairness, that price isn't for a clean, lower mileage survivor, it's for a totally regutted, no expense spared adventure van. But still, 6 figures?!

      I couldn't decide between the following if I tried:






    11. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 02:42 PM #11
      All kinds of syncro love in tcl today. Opportunity to whore my 87 ej25 7 passenger

      Dave

    12. Member c0mmon's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 02:59 PM #12
      for materialistic fanboys with no practicality. NEXT

    13. Member kamzcab86's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 03:20 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by rs4-380 View Post
      Opportunity to whore my 87 ej25 7 passenger
      Likewise, albeit it's a 2WD with it's original WBX (until it blows up) :



      ^That will be at SyncroFest in a couple of weeks along with 80+ other Vanagons & Dokas, most of them being Syncros, of course.
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    14. Member iamsuperdan's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 03:52 PM #14
      Quote Originally Posted by c0mmon View Post
      for materialistic fanboys with no practicality. NEXT
      lol wut?

      It's a crewcab pickup. Available with 4wd. With strong reliable engines. How is that not practical?

    15. Member Rockerchick's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 04:00 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by ken_mag View Post
      The subie conversion is a nice upgrade to the Vanagon. We did an NA EJ22 swap in our 2wd and couldn't be happier. Would love to do a syncro/TDI swap, but now we're talking $$..
      My father-in-law has an '84 Westfalia Wolfsburg Edition van that he did a Subaru swap on. Great camping vehicle. He also picked up a Syncro Vanagon last year...and a wrecked B4 Passat TDI popped up on Craigslist so he got the TDI from it. Working on putting the TDI into the Syncro. The trans was shot already when he got the Syncro so he sent it off to get rebuilt and also had it regeared for the TDI engine. I can't wait for it to be done. Its going to be a seriously sweet van.

    16. Senior Member A.Wilder's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 04:05 PM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by Diamond Dave View Post
      this looks fun looks like it would be a fun tradesmen truck, like a 'ring Mobile Mechanic
      signatures are annoying, right?

    17. Member c0mmon's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 06:29 PM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by iamsuperdan View Post
      lol wut?

      It's a crewcab pickup. Available with 4wd. With strong reliable engines. How is that not practical?
      im sorry i dont care how strong and reliable the engine is. its 67hp they saying and people want 25k for some old crap with a slow motor.

      i didn't know you could make a 100k car with an aged Subaru engine, but then again i guess my d*** works just fine

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      04-09-2011 08:01 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by A.Wilder View Post
      this looks fun looks like it would be a fun tradesmen truck, like a 'ring Mobile Mechanic
      It would have to. Spends too much time chasing down Porsche's if it runs on the track:


    19. Member PizzaCat!'s Avatar
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      04-09-2011 08:09 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by 251 View Post
      On the down side, I liked the Subaru engine so much I sold all my VWs and am now on my second Subaru...
      So, where's the down side?


      OP - that is an awesome vanagon
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    20. Senior Member
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      04-09-2011 09:55 PM #20
      Great. Thanks to this thread, I've spent the last 30 minutes reading every Westy ad on thesamba.

    21. Member borapumpkin's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 10:34 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by Diamond Dave View Post
      It would have to. Spends too much time chasing down Porsche's if it runs on the track:


      that looks like PIR.

    22. Member kamzcab86's Avatar
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      04-09-2011 11:27 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by c0mmon View Post
      im sorry i dont care how strong and reliable the engine is. its 67hp they saying and people want 25k for some old crap with a slow motor.
      Umm, the WBX is 90hp, modified it can become over 100hp; the SVX is well over 100hp as well. With us Westy folks who still have the "slow" WBX, we enjoy the journey as much as the destination. And, "old crap" to you is a fun treasure to others. I wouldn't give up my Westfalia for anything.
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    24. Member unimogken's Avatar
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      04-10-2011 09:53 AM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by kamzcab86 View Post
      That will be at SyncroFest in a couple of weeks
      Ahhhhh crap I totally forgot about it this year!!!! AHHHH!!

      Quote Originally Posted by A.Wilder View Post
      this looks fun looks like it would be a fun tradesmen truck, like a 'ring Mobile Mechanic
      It was one of the fastest vehicles i've been in so far!
      Under the rear engine deck it had a Subaru STI engine mated to a Porsche G50 transaxle!

      Quote Originally Posted by borapumpkin View Post
      that looks like PIR.
      You sir are correct!
      I really wish everyone would update their location in their profile!

      Someone buy my car already!!

      Always looking for free firewood to feed my hungry wood stove!

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      04-10-2011 01:41 PM #25
      ...and my search turned up a '90 Westy with a Tiico engine conversion, rebuilt transaxle, and a bunch of other mechanical work for under $10k.

      If I was really, really serious about owning a Westy, I'd be taking a long drive today.

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