For 30 years now, the Volkswagen California has been the poster child camper van for anti-cubicle, ultimate road trip adventures. A true traveller’s van that’s aged gracefully over the past three decades.
Originally built by Westfalia when first arriving in 1988, VW took the California reigns shortly after, taking production in-house in Hannover with the production of the T5 model. Fast forward to today, and we’ve got this gorgeous stunner blending all the charm with the latest tech and features for modern travellers.
Special VW California for Sale but Not for the Masses
VW’s special edition 30 Year is a “very special gift” according to the German automaker — we’re sure van lifers everywhere would agree. However, with only 999 units available (with our UK friends receiving 30 of them), you likely won’t see this rarity gracing campgrounds anytime soon. Each unit sports a cool little badge displaying the production number.
Classic look with aluminum pop-up
This California camper’s styling retains that beautiful, boxy shape you’d expect from VW, rolling on 17-inch alloy wheels available in either anthracite or silver.
The aluminum pop-up opens up the cabin space with expanding bellows, converting into sleeping quarters when the sun goes down.
California 30 Years gets Volkswagen’s top van upgrades as standard
Unlike the original T3, today’s models actually make driving dynamics and handling more of a priority. Every California 30 Years gets Drive Assist as standard, adding LED rear lights, parking sensors both front and back, a Lights & Vision package, and lane monitoring for those long highway drives.
You won’t be able to traverse insane mountain cliffs like these other adventure vehicles, but nor should you. This special edition is all about the journey wrapped up in a modern tech, safe, and comfortable package.
Improved visibility with Lights & Vision package
The Lights & Vision package isn’t a hippy rave upgrade with strobe lights and disco ball (though that would definitely be alright with us). The feature seeks to improve overall visibility with rain-activated windscreen wipers, an auto dimming rear view mirror for those annoying headlights on the road, and front headlights that illuminate the path to and from the vehicle for added security at night.
Camper bed levels-up with standard Tour Package
Comfort and camper van go hand in hand, right? Expect this add-on to provide a good night’s rest with a sleeping pad to level out the bed; folding up quickly when necessary. Plus, a magnetic torch in the mix for added light and security. The Tour Package adds a detectable hitch also for optional trailer duties.
Other cabin features and accessories
For those hot days, the California 30 Years lets you rinse off with an external shower via exterior connection linked to the onboard fresh water reservoir at the back of the van.
For winter treks or cooler nights, an auxiliary heater featuring a programmable supplementary heating system comes standard to warm up the cabin. Double-glazed windows, also standard, will keep things toasty inside as well.
Smart storage designed for sufficient cargo in compact spaces is tough to pull off. But this is where the VW camper van’s German ingenuity has set the popular caravan apart. This edition finds easily accessible cupboard and shelf installations through a door and roller shutter all located at the rear segment of the living space.
All the cabinet decor comes in Bright Wood for a more cozy vibe.
California 30 Years Availability
Again, the VW California 30 Years Edition Camper Van is a rarity with only 999 global units being made available. And to make matters worse for us North Americans, the California isn’t for sale in this part of the world.
…Our 2016 VW California piece from four years ago is still one of our most popular, with the same question being asked: Where can I buy one and how much? Sorry guys.
But if a special edition California isn’t in the cards, you’ve got options like the recently released Crafter Grand California featured here at New Atlas, this 2018 Volkswagen Grand California, or Volkswagen’s Super-Sized California XXL Concept. Or just opt for the sweet LEGO Camper Van if you really need to get your fix.
Head to the VW California site here to learn more.