Rare? Hardly—the Volkswagen Type 1 is nearly as numerous as the Coleptera order from which they take their nickname, Beetle. A ubiquitous feature of the motoring landscape of the '60s and '70s, these curvy-carapaced creatures survived well into the modern age, and are still a common sight around the world. So why drive one—specifically, why make one faster?
/ 22 Apr 2015
As a follow-up to the Type-1 “Beetle”, in 1974 Volkswagen knew that its soon-to-be-released Golf had better be a great car. The company hired legendary stylist Giorgetto Giugiaro and borrowed much of the cars front drive technology from Audi. But that was then. Are front-drive, water-cooled Volkswagens a compelling classic car choice?
You could say that Jason Cammisa knows cars. With a day job at Road & Track, he has full access to the world’s best vehicles—but still comes back to his humble Volkswagen Scirocco. “This car definitely changed the path of my life because it forced me to be a mechanic,” Cammisa says, “I was in college…there was no way I would have been able to keep this car—I don’t think I could still have this car—if I had to pay somebody to work on it.”
In September 2009, Domi Hocher and his then-girlfriend, Zainab, took off on what can only be described as the trip of a lifetime. Since setting out from their hometown of Vienna, Austria, six years ago, this couple has crossed 115 international borders, covered 118,000 miles while visiting 80 countries (including all 48 "lower" states in the United States), and set foot on six of the globe's seven continents. All of which would be adventurous enough on its own, but Domi and Zainab get extra credit for their choice of transportation: a pair of Herbie-replica 1963 Volkswagen Beetles. At first glance, this level of commitment to a movie car from a film that debuted before either Domi or Zainab were born might seem a bit...peculiar, especially when planning travels of this sort. What about this car could have possibly captured their imagination to such a degree? As it turns out, they are hardly alone.
/ 14 Oct 2014
The plan was always to do everything myself because I didn't have a big pile of money! I dread even thinking about the amount of hours, blood, sweat, and tears that have gone into this. I’ve resprayed panels, learned how to weld, and now have good mechanical knowledge. I can't express enough how much joy I get out of this car, it really has been my life for the past six years...
By / 1 Oct 2014
Commonality and exceptions are everywhere. Although the following vehicles may seem wildly different from one another they are alike in two respects: All of them were produced at least a quarter of a century ago wearing the badges of German manufacturers.
/ 19 Jun 2014
Electric cars seem to be the future, if you believe Mr. Elon Musk and Tesla anyway. But if you prefer driving classic cars would substituting an electric drivetrain be sacrilege? Obviously this ruins a car's originality, but what if you have a body and chassis lacking a drive train?
The Collector is a weekly series produced in association with Gear Patrol.
The Type 34 is stately and is certainly more rare than the Karmann Ghia Type 14. But it's also far roomier than the Type 14 with more luggage space, as well. In contrast to what you might expect, the Type 34 is actually faster than the Type 14 too! You see, the Type 34 was fitted with a 1.5L engine, whilst its sibling made do with a smaller engine until 1967.
/ 2 May 2014
The VW Bus may not be the most luxurious camper, it may not have invented the breed, nor is it the biggest, most spacious land-yacht. But it's a simple, flexible, and efficient home that you can take anywhere. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about the VW Camper is that it looks as equally at home camping at the foot of the Alps as it does in vast, deserted American canyons.
/ 28 Feb 2014
Whether you think the VW Thing, or Type 181 as it was known in Germany, was an expensive joke (they cost nearly as much as a Chevrolet Camaro at the time) or a fun, bohemian runabout there's no arguing with their wonderful brochure art. The VW stands in sharp, metallic contrast to the hand-drawn sketches that compose the vast majority of lifestyle imagery in the brochure.
/ 31 Jan 2014
Punch-buggy black-and-white! Millions of Beetles were built during its production run. And although production of "The People's Car" finally ended in Puebla, Mexico on July 30th, 2003, we can still reminisce and enjoy these shots of the round, geometric Bugs and their stampings being assembled. Think of just how many people have enjoyed these cars!