Welcome to Down On The Street, where we admire old vehicles found parked on the streets of the Island That Rust Forgot: Alameda, California. The VW van is a fairly common sight in Alameda, so much so that I keep passing by most T2 Transporters without stopping to photograph them (we've seen numerous T1 buses: 1956, 1957, 1960, 1966, and 1967). I'd been contemplating the inclusion of an early water-cooled Volkswagen van in this series- but still wasn't convinced they belonged- when I spotted this super-clean '87 Vanagon Syncro parked just across the street from the 1957 Cadillac. I'm convinced now; it's Vanagon Monday today!


The four-wheel-drive Syncro didn't sell at all well in North America, no doubt because Detroit and Japan were filling showrooms with burly off-road hardware that made the VW look like something only Yurp-lovin' effete snobs (not to mention nattering nabobs of negativism) would choose to drive.


South Africans loved the Syncro so much that VW continued selling them there into the current decade; see the most annoying car-ad jingle ever made.

First 300 DOTS VehiclesDOTS FAQ