NZ Classic Car

ONE IN HOW MANY MILLION

The distinctive clatter of its air-cooled flat-four engine and its unique body outline makes the Volkswagen (VW) Type 1, or ‘Beetle’, a statement of individuality today. Back in the ’60s, the Beetle was a symbol of a generation defying the norm as the quirky cars took markets by storm, while the Type 2 Transporters and Microbuses became the vehicles of choice of a generation promoting ‘peace not war’.

Stand-up comedians had a field day with material for a myriad of jokes and personal comparisons to the Beetle, and its shape was brilliant for cartoonists.

More than 21 million were made, and, despite these numbers, values are soaring. Early split-rear-window cars are much sought after and hard to find. They can command sums of around US$45K (NZ$69K), while cabriolets in good condition usually sell for a similar price.

When production ceased in Europe in 1978, a special run of 300 1200L Beetles was made. One sold in 2007 at Sotheby’s in England for NZ$20,400, and another in 2015 at Bonhams for NZ$25,870, so values are steadily

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