Camper Conversion: 1995 GMC Vandura G3500 – $13,000

Mar 2020 | Classifinds, Truckin Tuesday

This week’s Trucking Tuesday feature is both a survivor and a nicely modified example of a late-production GMC Vandura, listed last week here on Craigslist in Brooklyn, New York with high miles but a ton of work done to convert it into a legit camping rig with an asking price of $13,000.   This former fire department ambulance is too much of an outlier for the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool, but it is final production year version of the classic G-Series van, which enjoyed an incredible production run of 1971 to 1995.  If you are serious about buying this Vandura, you can start the conversation by contacting the seller via the listing. 

The Chevrolet Van and its corporate sibling at GMC, the Vandura, were synonymous with a wide range of duties, from ferrying airport passengers to contractor vans to municipal uses, like this example. They weren’t pretty or particularly compelling to drive, but they offered tons of utility and generally low running costs. This example is rare for a few reasons, including being a final production year example of the more obscure GMC-badged model, and a long-wheelbase version that was typically reserved for commercial uses and a perfect basis for converting into a camper. Starting in 1993, the Van / Vandura began to incorporate some modern touches, including ABS, a driver’s side airbag, and a Vortec V6 – though this one is likely equipped with the workhorse 5.7L V8, that the seller says has been well maintained. 

If you’re considering a vehicle that will allow you to escape city life for a few days or months at a time, the camper conversion work carried out on this GMC seems quite extensive. Sofa beds, concealed furniture, stove/sinks with water hookups, solar power, toilet – the list goes on and on. A massive on-board electrical system should support laptops and cell phone charging with ease, and supports additional features like on-board carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. The seller also details a litany of new parts and recent maintenance, including a new exhaust system, water pump, thermostat, alternator, and functioning A/C that was just serviced. While not for everyone, the camper conversion work appears to be quite thorough, and the underlying platform a reliable foundation that will be easy to find parts for no matter how far off the grid you go. Good luck with the purchase and subsequent escape if you decide to go underground! 

Here’s the seller’s description:

Ex-fire-department ambulance converted into an off-grid adventure camper van! Email or call for more photos and details!

Converted in September 2018 – everything is close to new, and in great condition:

INTERIOR
– Large sofa opens into a 6’ × 4’ bed, memory foam mattress, sleeps two comfortably 
– Large slide-out table for eating / working
– Loads of storage space inc. large slide-out pantry
– Two-burner Stove with propane tank underneath
– Camco Wave-3 3000 BTU LP Propane Heater, with 5’ hose
– Sink and faucet with self-contained fresh-water / gray-water tanks
– 2 × 7 Gallon Freshwater, 1 × 6 Gallon Graywater
– System pressurised with 12v Shurflo pump
(also feeds hose outlet at the rear of the vehicle, w/ 25’ hose and nozzle)
– 12v Fan-tastic Roof Vent, 3 speeds 
– Camco Casset Toilet concealed in a cupboard. Brand-new, never used or filled
– Custom magnetic blank-out blinds for stealth camping

EXTERIOR
– Doors insulated with R19 recycled insulation 
– Spare tire mount added on the rear door (old tire shown in photos)
– 5 Gallon Jerry Can mounted on rear door
– 30A Shore Power Inlet with GFCI adapter (side)
– Fan-tastic roof vent
– 2 × Solar Panels 

BATTERIES & AC POWER
Massive electrical system (for the size of this vehicle) to charge all laptops, phones, camera, power tools, and even a power a 12V fridge if you wanted.

– 3 × 125am 12V AGM Batteries Heavy Duty (total 375ah)
– Renogy 2000W Pure Sine Wave Inverter / Charger & Control Panel
(Inverts 12V DC from the battery to 120V AC and powers 4 × GFCI outlets)
(Also charges the batteries when hooked up to 30A shore power or a standard GFCI)

– 2 × Renogy 100 WATT 12V Monocrystalline Solar Panel (200w Total) 
– Renogy 30 AMP MPPT Solar Charge Controller & Bluetooth Module
(This regulates and controls the charge from the Solar Panels to the Batteries)
(This is ready to handle an additional two panels, wired in parallel)

– System connects to 2 × Bus Bars for clear and easy configuration 
– Includes 12V Keyline Charger, for charging leisure batteries from alternator
(Purchased but never installed—we always had enough solar power)

12V SYSTEM
– 2 × LED light strips, independent switches, shared dimmer
– 2 × USB sockets + 1 × 12V socket at the rear
– 2 × USB sockets on center console / electrical cupboard
– 1 x 12V socket behind driver’s seat (for future fridge / cooler?)
– Fan-tastic Roof Vent
– Water pump

EXTRAS
– Camco Casset Toilet (concealed in a cupboard) Brand-new, never used or filled
– Excellent sound system w/ bluetooth (previous owner)
– Road-side Emergency Kit (New & Unused)
– Additional First Aid Kit (New, minus ~3 band-aids)
– Wall-mounted Fire Extinguisher (New & In-date)
– Carbon Monoxide / smoke alarm
– 12v Keyline Charger, for charging leisure batteries from alternator
– Spare parts, wires, fuses & tools, including a Rigid impact driver

– 24 Piece Enamel Dinnerware Set
– Various pots & pans
– Dustpan & Brush
– 14″ × 14″ washing tub
– Road Atlas, Maps & Various national park brochures 
– Military surplus wool blanket, and other bedding

WELL MAINTAINED
– Regularly serviced and oil changed as needed 
– New front tires (October 2018) ~10,000 miles
– New exhaust + muffler (October 2018)
– New water pump + thermostat (January 2019)
– New Windshield (March 2019)
– Various new engine hoses (March 2019)
– New Alternator & Battery (March 2019) 
– Replacement heavy duty rear tires + spare (April 2019)
– Old spare tire is shown in photos, not the new one
– AC serviced (April 2019)
– Various lights + electrics serviced / replaced as needed

Do you have a G-Series Van story you’d like to share?  Comment below and let us know!

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