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Subaru-Powered 1970 VW Bus For Sale

This is a Subaru-powered 1970 VW bus for sale in Hillsboro, Oregon.

On the outside, it has a little bit of rust so it still needs some body work.

The Subaru engine gives it more power than the original engine. Some people call it a BUSARU.

Asking price is $8,000. Please enjoy, learn more, and re-share below. Thank you!

Subaru-Powered 1970 VW Bus For Sale

1970 VW Camper For Sale 001

1970 VW Camper For Sale 002 1970 VW Camper For Sale 003 1970 VW Camper For Sale 004 1970 VW Camper For Sale 005 1970 VW Camper For Sale 006 1970 VW Camper For Sale 007 1970 VW Camper For Sale 008 1970 VW Camper For Sale 009 1970 VW Camper For Sale 0010 1970 VW Camper For Sale 0011 1970 VW Camper For Sale 0012 1970 VW Camper For Sale 0013

I am putting my fun little project car up for sale, I am going to be moving shortly and unfortunately I need to thin things out. Anybody looking at VW busses from this era know they are always project cars, this one is a running/driving machine, but will need more work to be in tip top shape. This Bus was from Southern California and it has very minimal rust, but there is some surface rust and now that it is in Portland you will want to work on that.

This is a very fun vehicle to drive, it has loads of power and is a total sleeper car when you pull up next to somebody at a traffic light. I have put a lot of time and effort into this bus from where it started. I will try to list off everything I have done and I am sure I will forget something, if you are interested in itI will be completely honest with you and show you everything I have done to it so you are not surprised later on.

It is a 1970 Volkswagen Transporter Type 2 Bus with a 1994 Subaru Legacy 2.2L motor in it. This is what some people call a BUSARU swap or a Scooby Doo Swap. I started with a shell with one seat in it and have started from the ground up essentially. It has a freshly rebuilt Transmission in it with an adapter plate from Kennedy Engineering to match the engine to the Tranny. Custom made motor mounts and bar. The wiring harness has been custom made for the motor and has been sent off to be tested to make sure it was done right. The wiring in the Bus has also been redone with newer style blade fuses and fresh wire. The brakes have all been gone through and fresh fluid and the CV axles have been rebuilt. I added the bigger, stiffer sway bars and added the rear one. It is not a Porsche, but it handles a thousand times better than stock. The rear wheels went to Lug Studs instead of Lug Bolts (small change, but makes mounting the wheels easier) The fronts can’t be done on the 1970 (according to the forums on the good old inter webs) so I never tried. It has an electric fuel pump and dual radiators with 4 electric fans hooked up. The bus still overheats if you run it too long and thats why I say it is still a project car and not ready to take on a road trip just yet. I had done a lot of reading online and tinkering around with different setups, but ran out of time before moving away for school so I didn’t get the chance to fully finish it. This is where I can tell you what I rear and what you may want to do to get it perfect. You can drive around town and be fine, its just longer stretches and big hills you may have problems with. It has stainless steel headers and a stainless muffler, it sounds like a WRX when you’re driving down the road.

The body still needs a lot of love, I highly doubt it will be a show vehicle and it does have Bondo on it, so Don’t be surprised when you show up and expect a pristine vehicle. I have done a lot of metal work because of the previous owner and years of rust and sitting. It has had the front cowl around the windshield replaced with a new windshield and gasket. I have done most of the window seals around the bus and the door seals as well. The front floor pan is in good shape, but a few tiny holes under the drivers feet. Every part I had taken off to fix or for something else got a wire brush and some fresh paint too. It has many paint colors on it and the previous owner painted it with house paint at one time too, so I had started trying to clean it up, but it just adds to the sleeper cool look.

The inside is what took the most time and you will see it has been meticulously thought out for a camper van inside. I complete gutted the inside and it got a fresh coat of paint and I built up a camper van “westy” style interior inside. I am a climber and most of the drawer pulls are old climbing pieces and the storage was designed for a climbing road trip. From Front to Back: I started with he dashboard, I pulled the cracking rubber covering off and repainted it. It has a touch screen DVD player (with backup camera) and all the gauges work (with the exception of maybe one light? I don’t remember) I put a tach in the dash and a water temp gauge on top. The E-brake works and the front seats were recovered with better foam and seat warmers in the bottom and back. The back camper van has a small camping stove, area to wash dishes, a water holding tank and a spot for a small cooler. There is a bunch of storage under the bed and a wardrobe cabinet next to it. I replaced the old fabric headliner with wooden planks and the floors are hardwood and the countertop is granite.


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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Gale
    May 26, 2016, 5:37 pm

    Yep it’s the 70’s all over again…a rolling bedroom?

  • Nancy M.
    May 26, 2016, 8:04 pm

    LOL! My husband and I traveled all over Europe in one very similar back in the early 70’s! Brought back many fond memories just looking at it! I would thoroughly enjoy having it, but my son would NOT appreciate my getting a project car at this point! We even shipped it back to the USA when my husband’s military tour was over, but he was not a great mechanic, so……. 🙁

  • Dennis Elliott
    May 26, 2016, 9:46 pm

    Wow man, that is old school cool!!! I had a 74 bug with a Porche engine, sky blue with moons all around and flared fender wells. Sleeper to the max.

    I would love to take care of this Busaru, but being disabled makes it too much of a challenge. Thanks for sharing, tho!

    May 27, 2016, 12:17 am

    CL Ad has been flagged… rut roh

  • Rue
    May 27, 2016, 1:23 pm

    Sounds like a lot of work, time, and love went into this one.

    I like the pull-out camp kitchen solution….just the thing for campgrounds where you’ve got a parking pad and bathhouse, but don’t want the fuss of an RV.

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