An "honorable exception", from the U.S.A..

Here you will find what the U.S.A.'s community of 4x4 believes about the t3 Syncro, or, better, the Vanagon Syncro, as officially is called the 8 seater bus or the Westfalia Syncro t3, at the U.S.A..

The importance of the recognition in this country, the mother of the 4x4 for the people, of a foreign vehicle 4x4, is tremendous.

# 1

Article excerpt:

 "An honorable exception from the rule "AWD is almost useless beyond pavement" is the VW Syncro Vanagon. Yes, it has viscous couplings to distribute torque front/rear - but it has a granny low first gear and axle diff locks (real diff locks!). So, it is much more capable than most folks think". 

# 2


by Robert Rountree


Yes, you. You, looking at this screen for hours on end, online. You, bleary eyed. You, a Vanagon Internet addict. Have you looked in the mirror lately? Been outside? Know what day of the week it is? Been out from under your Van lately? Know the chapters in your Bentley so well, you mumble to yourself........ No Cooling #19... not Water Tanks #76?

Your name was given to us by a spouse or family member who is concerned about your Vanagon internet addiction. At Vanagons Anonymous, we can help.

We're a non-profit society of recovering addicts like yourself that provides support and counseling through weekly meetings designed to help you cope with your problem.

We feature a twelve step recovery program and in extreme cases, interventions. Although it is our firm belief that you are never "cured," you most certainly can recover.

We have designed a brief checklist to determine if you are a Vanagon addict. Do you:

1. Have twitches of the head when you walk by your Vanagon?

2. Check Your e-mail more than 3 times a day?

3. Spend more time reading/replying to e-mail than eating or sleeping?

4. Surf aimlessly looking for Vanagon related topics?

5. Leave your name and information at countless sites if only to hope you'll receive a reply one day from a company about some new shock, spring rate, trailer hitch or battery?

6. Log on before important personal habits, such as meal preparation, hygiene or bodily functions?

7. Have red, swollen eyes that hang halfway out of your head?

8. Spend hours online on a holiday from work, where you'd usually be griping about your carpal tunnel syndrome?

9. Keep imagining you see a coolant drop on your garage floor, or think you feel a slight hesitation under power, Keep asking yourself...... did I have to shift into 3rd last last time I came up this hill?... is that smell antifreeze?

10. All of the above?

If you answered yes to four or more questions (or chose #10), you have a problem. Please call us at Vanagon Anonymous at:


We're here, we're free, and we're confidential. The first step to recovery is admission that you have a problem.

Call us today.
(If you can power off to free up your phone line,that is.)

[email protected]
Copyright © 1997-2001, Ron Lussier. All rights reserved.

# 3


" Everyone from pro snowboarder Jussi Oksanen to Maverick’s surfing legend Grant Washburn to actor Tom Hanks, who calls his Syncro addiction “a rare dementia,” has succumbed to the Vanagon."

# 4

"One of the most remarkable vehicles ever". 

 "The T3 Vanagon was one of the most remarkable vehicles ever built, and has one of the most fanatical followings out there. Yes, it’s not perfect; but it has a number of qualities that are unique, which convincingly convey greatness upon it. And the all-wheel drive Syncro version takes it to a whole other level; to the very peak of automotive Valhalla. All Hail the Vanagon!"

 Curbside Classic.

# 5

The Vanagon song.


# 6

"Popular mechanics":

"Vanagon  camper Syncro: in the top 10 of the Highly Desirable Modern Day Collector's Cars".

# 7

 July 2011
"“We’ll be back,” I said with a smile."

Going someplace in a iconic VW bus provides much more than a ride-it’s a reconnection to life in the slow lane.

"To a certain generation, the Volkswagen bus was a kind of home away from your parents—a low-cost, easy-to-repair, air-cooled, exquisitely engineered—if vastly underpowered—four-cylinder recreational vehicle that allowed you to live with mom and dad but still do all those fun, counterculturey things you couldn’t do under their roof.
Produced since 1950 under the official name Transporter, these slow-moving panel vans have been called by lots of names—microbus, minibus, Vanagon. But “hippie bus” has probably stuck best. My wife, Vivian, and I operate more under the classification of “aging Gen-Xers,” so when we rolled into Costa Mesa’s Vintage Surfari Wagons, our agenda was a bit different from the early longhaired pioneers. Some 44 years removed from the Summer of Love, we were getting away from our kids.
Bill and Diane Staggs rent from a fleet of 10 restored VW buses. The most vintage is a pea green 1977 pop-top camper tricked out with the Westfalia package, meaning everything from kitchen sink to sleeping compartment. The Staggs supply flashlights, dishes, bedding, bike racks—whatever you need. “You just show up and go,” he said.
Many patrons mount surfboards on their rentals and choose a coastal sojourn. Ever the rebels, we opted to go the other way—to Joshua Tree. Save for our Rottweiler-Lab, Quincy, there would be no sentient others to feed, clothe or distract with “I Spy” games. For 36 hours, we were, like, free, man. Then Staggs broke the news: The 1986 Westfalia Vanagon with the automatic transmission we were supposed to rent wasn’t available. And I can’t drive a stick.
That was fine with Vivian, who had driven a 1969 bus all over Zimbabwe after college. Suddenly effervescent, she volunteered to do all the driving, and I saw a fresh opportunity for her to exploit one of her long-cherished talents—insult comedy. “You sit where the girl sits,” she said. Whatever, dude.
Off we went in rush-hour traffic from the 55 to the 91 to the 60 to the 10. Before long, Vivian’s smarty-pants jokes gave way to a hard reality: Her hand was beginning to hurt from all that shifting. But free of our quotidian work, home and family responsibilities, that barely even registered as a bummer.
Once we hit Riverside and finally reached escape velocity, we began to understand why these rides have graduated from mass-market popularity to global cult status. And then we started reminiscing. Vivian recalled what it was like to be 23, driving rural roads with expat friends in an old bus for which they’d all pitched in. For me, it was the distinctive rumble of the Vanagon’s 2.2-liter engine, an internal-combustion sound so ubiquitous in my youth. That growl is gone now, muffled by catalytic converters or obliterated altogether by hybrid engineering. We hadn’t even realized it disappeared.
As the winds threatened to blow us all over the road and SUVs whipped by us with extreme prejudice, we settled into our journey, accepting arrival the way generations of VW-bus travelers had in decades prior: We’d get there when we got there.
For us, that would be late evening, when we nestled into a site alongside massive Airstreams, Coachmens and Winnebagos. We dined in the bus’ deceptively spacious cabin, under the romantic light of a florescent lantern, and pondered a card game. Instead, we opted to keep talking about things we no longer get to talk about, chilling the way we no longer get to chill, safe from the gusting winds. As we unwound in this old camping van, perhaps purchased decades ago by a family very much like ours, Vivian said wistfully, “What if we bought an old VW bus?”
She’s a dreamer like that, and being out in nature made those dreams more vivid. Hmmm, I’ve always wanted to restore an old car. I actually liked the idea. This could indulge a middle-aged fantasy and entertain our whole family—the proverbial win-win.
With that thought in the air, we moved on to our favorite thing about camping—sleeping under the stars. Recalling Bill Staggs’ carefully delivered lesson about levers and latches, we “popped” the top and threw pillows and blankets into the newly created perfect tent space for two. Warm desert winds were rockin’ the van, baby...and we passed out like babies.
By morning, the winds had died, so we boiled up water for instant Starbucks and breakfasted alfresco on some scrambled eggs and sausage we cooked on the van’s propane stove. But the light of day—and a quick look at Craigslist—brought a reality check to the idea of buying our own VW minivan. With worthy oldies starting around $7,000, the purchase would have to be relegated to the realm of starry dreams.
But this van was ours for the day, and the escape it promised was always as close as Orange County. We took it nice and easy for the afternoon, then handed the bus back to Staggs. “We’llbe back,” I said with a smile."

# 8

"1991 VW Vanagon Syncro the perfect "getaways" vehicle"

Mr. Steve Davidson, attorney in Oakland.


# 9

Enthusiasts Wanted

By Don Oldenburg
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, August 30, 2001; Page C08

"Meanwhile, the number of members increases every month as
Vanagon owners shift from being drivers to being enthusiasts."


# 10

 Road & Track

"Here's the CHAMP"