1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

1200cc Subaru Sambar VW replica

Discussion in 'Microvans' started by Wendy, Apr 3, 2010.

  1. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    Does anyone out there own a Subaru Sambar with a 1200cc engine?
    I'm importing one from Japan to the UK and am interested in contacts who already own a 1200cc Sambar (or Domingo?) for tips on maintenance, things to watch out for, parts' suppliers, and whether there is an English language maintenance manual for the 1200cc. (I know you can get the 660cc manual in English - is there enough in it about other bits of the vehicle apart from the engine that make it worth having, even though my van will be 1200cc?). All tips appreciated for novice.
  2. olddatsunfan

    olddatsunfan Member

    Wendy, is this the Domingo with the 1200cc engine? Does it have a VW body kit like the smaller Sambars?


  3. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    I think so -I think it's called different things in different countries, and yes it is a baby VW replica van. These are normally 660cc but mine is 1200cc, which I gather is quite rare.
  4. olddatsunfan

    olddatsunfan Member

    Hi Wendy, I think that they are called "Domingo" in right hand drive and "Libero" in left hand drive. So they did come out with VW kits with them, that's good to know as I'd be interested in one if it was so outfitted. I currently have the Suzuki Every with the VW kit and I love it, however, I find I'm needing a bit more space for passengers .... Thanks for the reply.

  5. cabnfever

    cabnfever Member

    just wondering if the 1200cc is a 3cyl? i know here the subaru justy's had 3cyl 1200cc engines.
  6. Azada

    Azada Member

    Re Subaru Domingo

    Yes they are neat vans. I just bought one here in Japan with the VW kit and was planning on bringing it back to Canada but sold it to a Japanese customer. There are VW kits available for alot of the vans and trucks-not just the kei class either, I was at a shop last week outside of Tokyo which had kits for over 100 different models. You have to be careful as some are great quality and others are cheap and junky and dont match up well. Take a look at the Sambar with the Akabou engine I am bringing back next month.

  7. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    I think it does have the justy engine in it so I guess it is probably a 3cyl, but no idea really.

    I have confidence in my UK importer, but only time will tell whether it's a jewel or otherwise.
  8. Azada

    Azada Member


    Great, I hope it's a nice one and I am sure you will be happy with it if it is. Do you have any pics of it and the auction sheet. I can translate the sheet if you need.
  9. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    I've lots of pics but don't know how to upload them!
  10. davestigerridge

    davestigerridge New Member

    I have one just got it from Darren its great, mine is the auto cvt version and drives great and cruise at 70mph more than happy. it has seating for 7 people and aircon front and rear, full time 4wd, electric front windows, central locking, mine also has the VW replica kit on.:)http://www.minitrucktalk.com/images/smilies/smile.gif
  11. davestigerridge

    davestigerridge New Member

    Yes 1200cc 3 cylinder from Justy
  12. olddatsunfan

    olddatsunfan Member

    I just turned down a 4wd Domingo with the automatic. It didn't do so well on the hilly parts around the dealership, better than my old N/A 5 speed Suzuki, but, I want this one for the highway if needed and the highways around here get pretty hilly! I'm still waiting on them to find me a 5 speed version ...
  13. davestigerridge

    davestigerridge New Member

    I found just putting foot down a bit when doing a sharp turn uphill kicked the gearbox to stay low and no problems with hills, but I must admit until you get used to it, it does seem slow on hills with turns in. On the motorway however cruises at 70mph just fine with some to spare and has no problems on hills even with 7 adults on board.
  14. olddatsunfan

    olddatsunfan Member

    I'm envisioning long, highway cruises with the Domingo up and down the Coast Mountains and Rockies out here, I think the 5 speed is going to be the way to go for that. I'll settle for a good, steady, 80km pull on the long and winding uphill stretches!
  15. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    I imported my 1200cc Domingo in June but due to illness wasn't able to collect it until September - it was worth the wait, I love it. I've taken out the middle seat to provide more space so it's only a 5-seater, not 7. Next year I'm going to convert it into a comfy sleep one camper van - I'll work out how to upload photos by then!
    I've got a garage to maintain it that I've known more than 30 years (in South East London).
  16. anthill

    anthill Member

    Thanks for the news Wendy! Waiting patiently for pictures. :pop:
  17. Shak

    Shak New Member

    Looking for LHD Subaru Sambar or Libero VW Replica

    Hi Everyone

    can you tell me if the Subaru Sambar or Libero came in LHD. I am looking for one that comes with a VW kit.

    Can any one give me some advice.

  18. Shak

    Shak New Member

    Hi Darcy
    can you tell me the details of this shop outside of Tokyo which had the kits for different models. I am trying to find a LHD minivan to get kitted up with a VW Camper kit. If you know any bodyshop out their that will do the work that would be great also. Many thanks
  19. Stuff99

    Stuff99 Moderator Staff Member

    Libero came as LHD. as for vw kit, i dunno. bumper is different.
  20. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    Just had my Domingo (called Genevieve) given the once over at my garage, including new water pump, fan belt and rear shock absorbers before a little trip to France. She now drives a treat and I was pleased with how easy it was to get the parts here in the UK. Shame I ran out of petrol on a French Motorway!

    But I have a couple of questions:
    1) Does anyone know how many litres the petrol tank is? (if you reply in gallons, please let me know if that is UK or American gallons).
    2) In France most petrol stations sell unleaded which includes 10% ethonel. Would Genevieve run on this?
    3) Any idea when the cam belt etc should be replaced? Eg 60,000miles or ten years or what?

    Still haven't sat down and worked out how to upload pics!
  21. olddatsunfan

    olddatsunfan Member

    I believe the Domingo has a 40L tank Wendy. I think that the timing belt is changed every 100,000 km. I love that you can get parts for it locally and easily too.
  22. franck2cv

    franck2cv Member

    As per my french owner's book:
    40 litres, 10.6 US gal., 8.8 Imp gal.

    (another 12 moths to wait for the import of mine!!!!)
  23. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    Thank you Franck and OldDatsunFan.
    Franck - I'm intrigued - you have a French translation manual? Is this for the 660cc Sambar or the 1200cc Domingo? I've not been able to locate an English translation of the 1200cc Donmingo mnual but will settle for it in French. Where did you get it?
  24. franck2cv

    franck2cv Member

    Hi Wendy,

    The manual is for a Libero (LHD Domingo) 1.2. I simply ordered it to a Subaru dealership in France (well my Dad did it on my behalf), it's referenced as a part just like any other and was still available last year:

    According to Subaru, it is still available in German and Italian but do not have the part number.

    It took 7 months to get though straight from Japan!!

  25. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    Thanks Franck - I've asked my parts supplier to find me a manual. Just hope my French is good enough to make sense of it!
  26. franck2cv

    franck2cv Member

    you're welcome Wendy.
    If you need help with your French, then just ask!
    One thought: Subaru brand is a lot more popular in Switzerland. If your part supplier can't help, then a call to a Subaru dealership there could do. The E12 (as it was called there) sold pretty well there.
    Do you live in France then, or the UK?
    (former UK resident!)
  27. Wendy

    Wendy Member

    I live in Margate, Kent, UK but worked in France a few years back so used to speak passable French, and my brother and his family live their and are all bi-lingual. Good tip about Switzerland - I'll see what my parts supplier comes up with first. Thanks
  28. franck2cv

    franck2cv Member

    Nice. Never been to that end of the Island!
    Let me know about the helvetic option!
  29. KleinerMuck

    KleinerMuck New Member

    OT on
    Hi Wendy,
    Kent ist really nice!:)
    OT off
  30. Stoneycp

    Stoneycp New Member

    Hey guys,

    Just joined this forum today to look for more information on a 1200cc VW replica sambar.
    Just wondering, best places to research importing, avaiability etc.
    I have recently come accross Algys Autos, has anyone come into contact with them before?

    Sorry for tagging onto the end of this topic, any info would be appreciated!

    N.E. Scotland

Share This Page