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Butt-Welded: ’70 VW Karmann Ghia

Volkswagen Karmann GhiaConcept cars are created to judge public response and the possible success if it is placed in production. Well, back in 1953 VW executives felt they needed a halo vehicle to add to the line-up so they commissioned a styling concept created by Ghia’s Luigi Segre. It was a success. Volkswagen Karmann GhiaThey contracted Karmann to build the car in Osnabruck using old style, time-consuming techniques like butt-welding body panels, hand-shaped and smoothed with English pewter – in other words, more money. The rest of the car is Type 1. The marketing people at Doyle, Dane, Bernbach created a classic campaign for the new car aiming at the excesses of true sports cars – Maybe you don’t want to drive a wild-horse, a man-eating tiger or a killer fish…

Most Karmann Ghias had a hard life and few survived not having their nose broken by the time they were two. And then there are survivors like this one we found on eBay. The extent of the restoration on this California car is one respray in the original color. Everything else is as it was. Even the tires are bias-ply, something we and the seller recommend changing. The only downside is the transmission. It is an ASS (Automatic Stick Shift). Yes, it would be moderately more fun with a 4-speed but you want to know what, it isn’t a speed demon with either gearbox. You can continue to look if that bugs you or you can go after this piece of history and have some fun. Plan on spending between $18,000 or almost twice that if there are lots of bidders. See the full listing on eBay by clicking here.Volkswagen Karmann Ghia

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