Multiple Show Winner:

1966 Volkswagen
Beetle Cabriolet!

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A 1950s or '60s Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet is one of the most rewarding classic cars to own.



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Based on a design dating back to the 1930s, an old Bug is as basic and simple as it gets, easy to live with, spacious enough for four adults, and solid like a bank vault.

Despite all of its positive traits that should guarantee a very long life, the majority of these fine convertibles have moved on to the big junkyard in the sky. Those who remain in good or better condition, have become cherished assets and current prices reflects this.

The 1966 Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet shown here, VIN *116464470*, is special in many ways. It's the product of a '68 Cabriolet with rusted bottom and perfectly rust free '66 Sedan, both of which provided their bodies to create this museum quality '66 Cabriolet. The entire built, which took 18 months to complete, is documented in a photo album, and 21 of these photos are posted on the bottom of this presentation.

Spending a year-and-a-half in the body shop doesn't come cheap, and even with a favorable labor rate and cash discount, it's guestimated that the build swallowed about $45,000. At "normal" shop rates at a reputable restoration shop, this built would have come close to the 6-figure mark.

The vehicle comes with extensive documentation, owner's manual, paint chart, brochures, records, the aforementioned photo album, show cards, and much more.

As a multiple show winner, there are also plenty of throphies, all of which are included in the sale.

The car is licensed to a correct-for-the-year California black license plates, which have been professionally restored to like-new condition. Although the 2021 sticker has not been attached, the registration is current and the car can be driven anywhere.

For all practical purpose, this is a 45 year-old new car. It has never been wet, never been exposed to a drop of rain. The majority of its life it spent under a car cover, included in the sale, inside a garage right here in Ventura county.

No area and no detail has been overlooked. Everything, and that includes the wiring, is like brand new, and the vulnerable "nose" section is out-of-this-world perfect. Factory jack and tools look new as well.

This is more than a nut-and-bolt, frame ("pan") off restoration. It is a new built from the chassis' back bone up, a literally hand-built classic car.

Black powdercoated steel wheels carry new chrome hubcaps.

Tires are special order Cooker Classic Radials with 2-1/4 inch whitewall in the correct size 165-15, costing a cool $1K installed.

Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolets, all of them, came with a viny convertible top. Here a German canvas top was installed, as you'd find it on a vintage Mercedes 230SL or Porsche 356.

The top has never been used. It has been allowed to unfold in the garage from time to time, but it has never seen sunlight until we acquired the car. It's still as new as the matching convertible top cover and the show-quality convertible top frame.

The paint in "Grünblau" looks like Volkswagen's "Sea Blue" but it's actually a Volvo color. The paint application has been done to a show-wining standard, far above what even a luxury car could offer. It's as flat as a Steinway piano. The exact pain formula has been printed out and enclosed in the document folder.

Above: body details.

Inside, everything looks brand new as well. The steering wheel is out of the wrapper, the correct square weave carpeting fits like a glove.

All of the gauges work, and they are all fully restored originals.

Seats have been completely redone, from the frame up.

New safety belts for 4 occupants have been installed.

Rear seats have never been used.

The area under the rear bench seat, often indicative of problems, is as perfect as any other area on this car.

Above: interior details.

For many of us enthusiasts, the look of an early Beetle Cabriolet with its highly stacked convertible top evokes memories of the 1930s, when all convertibles, predominently Mercedes-Benz motorcars, displayed this look. Check out a 500K Cabriolet from the back and you'll agree.

The engine has been completely rebuilt. No detail has been overlooked, including the oil-batch air cleaner with N.O.S. decals.
Color-matched air housing is a custom touch.

The engine number, *H5102961* decodes as a 1968 1500cc engine with 53HP SAE, made for the USA/Canadian market (M157).

Above: engine compartment details.


As the restoration photos show: the undercarriage has been completely built up from the backbone up. That includes new convertible rails and floors. Everything has been done to a precision that is simply breathtaking.

The floors have been coated with genuine German Würth Steinschlagschutz, a neutral-colored, highly efficient protective coating that had to be special-ordered.

Top up or down, the car starts, runs, and drives like a brand new Volkswagen Beetle did over half a century ago.

There are no issues of any kind, no needs, no problems.

For all practical purposes, this is a like-new 1966 Volkswagen Beetle, with some custom touches, like the 1961 front blinkers, the wide whitewall radials, and the earlier hubcaps.

If you are into matching numbers, this car is not for you.

But if you'd like to buy what is most likely the best Cabriolet of its kind in the country, look no further.

It's not just the cost of this built alone. This was a true labor of love, the culmination of a long-time dream that had become reality thanks to an old-school body man who was as excited about this project as the owner was. Hence, even if you had close to $100K to burn, it's not guaranteed that you could duplicate this car.

Consequently, this 1966 Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet presents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a car that stops traffice.

Restoration Photos:


RETURN TO THE SHOWROOM


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.