Kevin Thompson has always been a huge fan of vintage Volkswagens.

He’s owned 20 Beetles, as well as 3 VW Transporter vehicles, over the years before he became the owner of a 1967 VW Transporter pickup truck after 20 years of negotiations with its former owner.

Jim Sutherland

The previous owner was only the second owner of the German-built pickup and was given the truck as a graduation gift. The truck was purchased new by a family member and gifted to the second owner who kept it until a $3200 repair bill convinced him it was time to sell the pickup to Kevin since he had pursued the VW Transporter for the past 20 years.

The final straw for the previous owner was the fact 3200 bucks did not include fixing its brakes, so he sold it to Kevin in 2022.

Kevin told MyStarCollectorCar his interest in VW trucks started with an uncle because he bought one for use in the oil patch and, although it was no match for western Canadian winters, it helped influence Kevin’s interest in VW Transporters.

Kevin became the current owner of the 1967 VW Transporter pickup in 2022, shortly before a devastating house fire destroyed most of his possessions, including the original documentation for his Volkswagen truck.

Fortunately, Kevin was able to save his VW because he had left its keys in the ignition and drove it away from the flames-even though the truck’s emergency brake was still engaged.

He also saved most of his remaining custom-built pedal cars that represented some of his favorite versions of classic VW Transporters. They are one-of-one models built by Kevin over the years and most of them have been sold to buyers all over the globe.

Kevin designed and built the scale model VWs from scratch, a skill that is well beyond most people and explains why their value has skyrocketed over a short period of time. Mercifully, the fire left most of the pedal cars intact and spared Kevin from even more misery. A comical situation arose when Kevin’s insurance company advised him to take a damaged pedal car to a local body shop for repair and the guy attempted to search for replacement parts.     

Kevin told MyStarCollectorCar his full-sized VW pickup is very original and still has its factory paint since it was not damaged by the fire. Factory-installed features include a gas heater and a unique windshield washer system that is manually operated by a hand pump positioned to the left of the driver on the dash.

The VW Transporter truck has a new seat cover, plus Kevin replaced the wooden strips on the truck bed, along with the canopy over it. The replacement canopy somehow managed to avoid damage in the fire and was a solid addition to the pickup’s overall appearance.

The truck still has its factory 1500 cc engine coupled to its floor-mounted 4-speed manual transmission and can hit 100 km/h (about 62 mph) on the highway, according to Kevin, but, at this point, he is reluctant to test it on a long-distance haul.

It took Kevin 20 years to buy his 1967 VW Transporter pickup-and he almost lost it in a fire a short time later-so one can understand why he wants to protect his survivor (in the truest sense) Volkswagen truck from more potential harm at this point.

Along with its very cool payload.

Jim Sutherland

BY: Jim Sutherland

Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section.