On auction August 14th, a 1965 Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet with a rare coachwork by Karmann
One of the most popular automobiles ever produced, Volkswagen’s iconic Type 1 Beetle sold in the millions, and one of the best-loved was the Cabriolet, built by Karmann of Osnabruck, which also built the svelte little Ghia-styled coupe. The Karmann cabriolet first appeared in 1949, and this quite popular model remained in production until 1980, with almost 332,000 units manufactured. With its fully padded “baby-buggy” folding fabric top, Karmann Cabriolets allowed four occupants reasonably comfortable seating while soaking up the sun’s rays. Cabriolets were more than simply Beetle sedans with their roof removed; Karmann heavily reinforced and strengthened the sills and lower cowling, and added a transverse brace to the floor pan. Cabriolets were generally better-finished than their coupe brethren, including such niceties as twin back-seat ashtrays, a vanity mirror on the passenger-side sunvisor, alloy stone guards on the rear fenders, and wheel trim rings.
This Yukon Yellow over black vinyl Cabriolet was the recipient of thorough restoration prior to the current owner’s acquisition of the car in 2018. Fitted with a rare and classy set of rear fender skirts, the motor was rebuilt in 2008 by Karl’s Customs in Phoenix, Arizona. Recent work in the current ownership includes regular maintenance by Park Place Holdings in Portsmouth, Rhode Island along with the fitment of retrimmed correct-type 1967-style seats and wipers to replace the ’68 high back seats and wipers in the car when it was purchased. Reported to run well, this Beetle is no doubt ready to provide loads of smiles to the next lucky owner.
Chassis no. 157657748
Engine no. 113 129701
1,200cc OHV Air-cooled Opposed 4-Cylinder Engine
Single Solex carburetor
53bhp at 4,200rpm
4-Speed Manual Transmission
4-Wheel Independent Suspension
Front Disc, Rear Drum Brakes
*Fitted with rarely seen rear fender skirts
*Swingin’ ’60s droptop motoring
*Attractive color scheme
Photography and text courtesy Bonhams