Fresh Timing Chain: 2000 Volkswagen Eurovan MV – Sold?
March 22, 2022, Update – We just confirmed the listing for this “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found we’re assuming this ride “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
The Volkswagen Eurovan is both one of the best and worst creations ever to come from the land of Wolfsburg. The decidedly un-minivan van is loaded with convenience and space and does its best to straddle the line between commercial-grade hauler and ultimate family cruiser. Nothing has come remotely close to it since production ended in 2003, and this 2000 VW Eurovan MV originally listed in February 2022 on Craigslist in Corvalis, Washington has the preferred interior with the picnic table and rear-facing jump seats along with a powerful VR6 engine for $8,000. Comparing this price against the NADA Price Guide confirms this private seller has his Eurovan priced up against the “High” retail price of $8,850, despite admitting there are some unsettling noises coming from the drivetrain.
I speak from deep personal experience about the virtues and vices of the Eurovan, as I own a 2003 model. These really are great vehicles, but I’ve seen time and again how often non-enthusiasts buy highly suspect examples with no service records and are shocked to learn these are not cheap vehicles to maintain. Everything on the Eurovan is heavy and feels like it was chiseled from military-grade steel. As such, things wear out, like door strikers and handles. That’s just the simple stuff; the bigger issues reside in three key areas: the automatic transmission, which is horribly overtaxed by the high curb weight; the timing chains, which will develop worn guides if oil changes are not performed regularly; and the heater core, which is known to fail along with the foam that covers the blend box and allows cool air to stay cool. All that said, buying a good one pays enormous dividends, as very few mechanics want to work on these due to the lack of spare parts and the time-consuming nature of anything wherein the drivetrain is jammed halfway under the hood cowl.
The MotorWeek RetroReview Channel provides their thoughts of the 1993 Volkswagen Eurovan model that illustrates how little this model changed over its production life:
Personally, I took a huge leap of faith and had mine converted to the European-market manual gearbox, which eliminated my major area of concern which was that of the failure-prone automatic transmission. I had the timing chains done at the same time, and eventually proactively replaced the heater core and blend box foam so I could embark on long journeys with the family with some of my nagging doubts calmed. The seller’s Eurovan already comes with fresh timing chains and a variety of desirable upgrades, like an awning and curtains for the interior. The Eurovan also came with heated seats from the factory and a rare optional moonroof. The one concern? He mentions that there “…is some noise in the differential or final drive that needs to be looked at.” Notice he’s not looking into it, but you, the next owner, should buy this Eurovan and then attempt to figure out how much pain is associated with that errant noise that could be gearbox-related. If you’re comfortable working on these or have a mechanic who is, this could still be a Eurovan worth checking out – especially with the spring camping season around the corner.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“2000 Eurovan MV in great shape.
This is the MV version with the rear-facing seats and fold-out table. Back bench folds down into a full size bed. Includes a set of curtains for privacy. This is a great car for spontaneous camping trips.
Body and engine are in great shape. Recent engine overhaul including replacement of timing chain.
Extras: Awning, heated seats, moon roof, set of nearly-new snow tires
Full disclosure: The only issue I know about is some noise in the differential or final drive that needs to be looked at.”
Do you have a Volkswagen Eurovan story you’d like to share? Comment below and let us know!