17 November 2022
The VW T3 B32 Porsche bus.
It’s thought that as few as 10 or 11 were built between 1983-’85, with the prototype being as far back as 1981 when Porsche needed a fast and spacious support vehicle while carrying out desert tests in Algeria in preparation for the Porsche 959 entry in the Paris to Dakar rally.
Fitted with a 232 bhp 3.2 Porsche Carrera engine driving the rear wheels, the B32 had significant torque balanced with good fuel economy.
Porsche’s engineers also had to beef up the T3’s suspension to help the chassis cope with the extra power generated by the Carrera 3.2-litre out back. Bigger brakes – ventilated Porsche discs up front – were fitted as well, nestled snugly behind genuine Porsche Fuchs 16-inch wheels, while the B32 uses a Porsche gearbox to cope with the extra power of the flat-six.
We all love riding around in a vehicle perceived as innocuous but packs a hidden punch when your right foot pushes the loud peddle. The B32 really is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Although one motoring hack noted, ‘testing its limits was likely akin to expressing a death wish.’
As for Porsche’s Dakar campaign? Porsche 959s finished first and second in 1986, with France’s Rene Metge and Dominique Lemoine taking the flag one hour and 45 minutes ahead of teammates Jacky Ickx and Claude Brasseur.
On reflection, the B32 may not be suitable for Mrs Porsche’s school run.