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Finding hidden objects in the walls of an old house isn’t unheard of. However, finding an entire car built into a house is certainly less common. Make that vehicle a van, and it’s a downright one-of-a-kind occurrence. Imagine your surprise to find a vintage Ford Transit van built into the walls of your family home as you start to demo a bathroom. 

black and white photo of a vintage ford van
Vintage Ford van | PA Images via Getty Images

How did someone get a Ford Transit van into their walls? 

The Drive discovered a Reddit user (more photos here) who had quite the yard to spin, detailing a wild story in which a building on his family’s property in southern Germany was being demolished. Inside the conjoined bathroom and pantry walls sat a vintage Ford Transit van. What’s even stranger is that the bathroom/pantry was built inside the van and the family never noticed. 

The family spoke with The Drive but asked for their identities to remain anonymous, but shared details about the van and the house. 

“The demolition started yesterday, May 4,” they told The Drive, and soon after the demo began, it was clear that the bathroom/pantry the family had been using for years held a big secret. “The crew and us started on that outside wall… and it became clear that it’s a car.” 

Not only was there a vintage Ford Transit van built into their house, but they had also been in and out of the van countless times without ever knowing it. Bizarre. Good luck hiding an EarthCruiser in a house. Yet, when the Drive asked about it, the Reddit user said, “It raised eyebrows but wasn’t too crazy,” the user told Peter Holderith. “We joked that it might be involved in a murder.”

What kind of vintage Ford van was in the walls? 

Profile view of the uncovered vintage van
Profile view of the uncovered van | Anonymous Reddit user

After some digging, the family discovered their bathroom and pantry were a framed 1950s German-made Ford Transit. In Germany, Ford called these the Ford FK 1000. Of course, the vehicle was heavily altered to serve as a structural part of the home. One of the major alterations is the thick coat of sour-green rust-proofing paint liberally slathered over every square inch of the van. Also, the drivetrain and most of the windows were removed. Needless to say, its driving days are most likely a distant memory. 

The family said they never thought much of low ceilings and cramped quarters; that was just how it was. It makes sense. People regularly build comfortable campers with vans like this; it stands to reason that a room could fit in one. Another factor that the owners cite as context for not noticing the van room is that they aren’t a particularly tall family. 

The anonymous Reddit user told The Drive, “I’m 165 centimeters, my dad is like 168 cm, my mom is 155 cm—tiny people.” It’s easy to hear the story and think it sounds insane not to notice a room built out of a car. However, the builders framed the vintage Ford Van like the other rooms in the house. To the family, this seemed like little more than an old house quirk, according to the family and the photos. 

The user explained to the Drive that the only giveaway was the vaulted roof that followed the contours of the van’s interior. But that only clicked retrospectively. 

Why would someone use a vintage Ford van to build a house?

A small, wood-paneled room in a house is actually inside a vintage Ford van
A bathroom made out of a van | Anonymous Reddit user

Since the discovery, the family has pondered this question a lot. Maybe the builders were trying to hide the van? However, the family thinks is that the area’s history and proximity to a popular lake suggest the house started more like a vacation camp. The van could have been the centerpiece of a collection of primitive lean-tos. Eventually, they got consolidated into a single structure. 

“Considering the history of the garden community and the lake there, it made sense to us that they probably just started their vacation hut with the bus and simply built around it,” they explained. 

What is to come of the van? 

“Sadly, not much material to salvage,” the user said. “It’s also a flooding area, and the ground floor elevation is not up to standard anymore, so it kinda has to go entirely.” 

Stories like this remind us that there is no shortage of bizarre, fun mysteries in the world. We just got to keep looking for them. 


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