Most of us remember what a stunning technological achievement the Chevrolet Corvair represented. With a rear-mounted engine, the Corvair came in a two-door coupe, convertible, four-door sedan, as well as truck and van models.
One of the first mass-produced ‘compact cars’, the Corvair suffered from a lot of bad press (and arguably poor safety). The downfall of the design began with Ralph Nader’s 1965 hit-piece, Unsafe at Any Speed. A few years ago, Time included the Corvair in its list of The 50 Worst Cars of All Time.
While Chevrolet first made their compact Corvair model starting in 1960, the company pulled it from dealer showrooms by the end of the decade.
Dormobile Corvair Camper Conversion
While seeing any Corvair might give you that tingly feeling of nostalgia, getting an up close taste of a rare camper conversion…well that’s the cherry on top of the sundae right there.
Dormobile is a UK company that’s made camper conversions for the last 50 years or so. They got their start converting vans for traveling salesmen and delivery drivers. One of the unique features of a Dormobile conversion is the patented Dormatic fold-down front seat.
This highly-modified 1963 Corvair van got the Dormobile treatment sometime in the past, but records are murky.
While you’ve got to protect your wallet (and your sanity) when tackling a vintage camper conversion, few vehicles would stand out at a rally like this Corvair camper which sold for $5,100 last fall by a seller in Chattanooga, Tennessee!
Looks a bit normal front the front.
But when you lift up the famous Dormobile roof…
Patented fold-down front seats.
While the interior could use some work, this van had only 59,000 miles on the odometer when sold.
Needs some paint.
But the engine runs well. The seller said the only issue was a slight tendency to pull to the right when braking.
More from the seller on his unique camper,
This is a pretty rare vehicle in good shape for 51 years old. If you are familiar with the “Walter Martin” Dormobile (VW, Land Rover, English Ford, Bedford) Camper Conversions of the 60’s and 70’s you will know how rare this vehicle is. As far as I know there are only 4 Corvair Conversions known to exist in North America. This model has all the rare seats in good condition considering they are stock. They are highly adjustable. The FG Top is in fair condition and will need new seals. The Vinyl Top has no tears in it. Really dry van pulled most of the interior just to take a look and it’s very dry with little rust and never been hit. The only rot is under the left rear battery compartment.
Corvair camper resources:
- Dormobile homepage
- Want to fix a Corvair? ==> Corvair parts
- Want to buy a Corvair? ==> Corvair Society of America
- More Corvairs for sale at Hemmings