California Survivor:

1965 Volkswagen Beetle
Sunroof Sedan

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An old Volkswagen Beetle is an automotive icon of the purest kind. Defying comparison with other means of transportation, naked data of horsepower, acceleration, and maximum speed is all but secondary to a true enthusiast. Who cares?



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A classic Volkswagen Beetle offers everything one ever needs from a car, not more, not less. Without black boxes, oxygen sensors, power options, and electronic gimmicks, it is as pure and basic as one could imagine and thus destined to live forever. Well, almost.

Fact is, time moves on mercilessly. The omnipresent Beetles that roamed Americas roads have almost all disappeared. Most have been eaten by the merciless rust devil, others have been modified, often to a point of no return.

This particular 1965 Beetle is bone stock save for a conversion from 6 to 12 volts, and a slightly larger 1600cc engine. We found the car in a garage in Fair Oaks, Calif., where it had been parked for years. After towing it home, we installed a new battery and went through the entire fuel system, the brakes, and the electricals to make sure it performs as a Bug should.
So let's have a closer look now, starting up-front with the trunk.

We find the original carboard trunk liner, a bit warped after 55+ years, and an aftermarket wire cover. All of the sheet metal is in wonderful condition here, painted in body color as it should. All the weatherstripping is new.

Most importantly, the vulnerable "nose" section is free of damage, which is rare these days. Once there's damage here, the car will never be the same.

Beetle's curvatious body is straight, with excellent shut lines and gaps throughout. Doors and hoods open and close smoothly. Chrome bumpers with overriders are both very nice.

The steel sliding sunroof is the most desirable option for a Bug. Let the sunshine in!
This one has received all new parts, gears, cable assemblies, guides, and seals.

The car has been sympathetically restored about a decade ago, with new paint in the original "Bahama Blue" color, yet has not been driven much afterward. The paint is still shiny, with just a few isolated spots that tell us that it wasn't painted yesterday.

All 5 wheels are the date-coded originals, painted in body color. All 5 tires are in near new condition.

Headliner and sunvisors have been replaced during the restoration.

Painted steel dash is as a masterpiece of simplicity. White dual-spoke steering wheel is stock. Gas gauge works. Radio is a cheap aftermarket one.

Cyclope gauge with odometer shows 86,710 miles.

Oatmeal colored carpeting has been replaced at the time of restoration. The same holds true for the seats and door and side panels.

Lap belts up front have been replaced at the same time.

Rear bench seat looks unused.

All of the lights work.

Although it looks like the stock 1,200cc single port engine, this Bug is powered by a later 1,600 cc dual port engine.

The engine is healthy as an ox. It starts on the button and runs smoothly. Fuel pump, coil, and conderser are new.

A special treat are the two single barrel carburetors.

There are no leaks.


Beetle's undercarriage looks like the typical California car's. We have not pressure washed it.

Floor pans are solid throughout.

All fenders have been off the car when it was painted.

Driving an old Bug Keefer is a pleasure that needs to be experienced in order to be fully appreciated!

Turn the ignition key and the 4-cylinder boxer starts instantly. Idle is stable, the sound mellow and soothing. Throttle response is crisper than expected, and if you step on the gas pedal, the Bug really comes alive.

Handling is precise, shifter engages with the characteristic "click." This Beetle gets thumbs up wherever we take him, as many folks remember the days when they or a family member had one. Fuel consumption? About one gallon every 30 miles!

We find driving an old Volkswagen somewhat therapeutic. It's a welcome escape from today's computer controlled cars and reminds us of the good old times we truly miss.

If you take care of this classic Beetle, it will be a reliable companion for potentially decades. Treat him like a friend, and he'll return the favor.

Here's a 3-minute video of this Beetle:


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You are most welcome to inspect this fine automobile at our location in Ventura, by appointment, or have someone inspect it for you.
Please, direct all inquiries to info@californiaclassix.com or call us at 805-792-9797.