For $8,500, beat the meetle

Nice Price Or Crack PipeIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

As one of the original, and most successful of invaders of the American auto market, the VW Beetle literally arrived here by the boatload. Today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe Custom Chop Top Woodie Beetle looks to be ship shape, but will its price sink the deal?

Yesterday's '89 Honda High-Roof Wagon garnered praise for its sleeper appearance, ability to spin all four of its steelies, and its Greddy-turbo'd ZC motor. However, like a blind date that ends in a Valtrex testimonial, that little Honda's salvage title proved its downfall, making 66% of you to send it Cracking.


The only question surrounding the title of today's custom 1965 VW Type One is whether it's licensed as an automobile, or a boat. It's been a stellar week for Rollo Grande who found both yesterday's huffing Honda and this Love Boat, er Bug, so heart-hands to him. Custom beetles are nothing new, and run the gamut from simple hacksaw Baja jobs all the way to wild fiberglass objets d' art. This chop top woodie isn't exactly artistic, but does look like it would be right at home parked under a framed picture of dogs playing poker.

Aside from the obvious changes to the bodywork, the two tone teal and white body seems to be stock and in good shape. The seller claims that the 1300-cc 43-hp flat four out back runs great. While visually representing numerous changes from stock, it's unknown whether this ‘65 has also benefited from the various mechanical upgrades that became available in ensuing years, and which are easy upgrades. If not then it still sports a 6 volt electrical system, swing axle rear end, and brakes that are about as effective as coating the tires in honey. Fortunately the car's top speed when new was a modest 81 miles per hour.


Volkswagen sold a buttload of Beetles in ‘65 so, should you take umbrage in the modifications done to this one, take heart in knowing that there were more than a million VWs built that year, and a lot are still rolling around. But maybe you've always had some sort of Captain Stubing fetish, or like the idea of driving around in the equivalent of your dad's pine-panelled den. If either of those accusations cause you to shoegaze and mumble a demur, then this could be the car for you, Sailor Moon.


Not only has the top of this Bug been banished to Davey Jones' Locker, but the parts remaining have been treated to some fine pine in the form of what looks like rustic shelf-liner. The doors have been cut down - matching the now mail slot of a windscreen - and they latch with a slidebolt off of your grandpa's toolshed. But the coup de grâce is the buffet table that wraps around the rear deck and provides incentive to hold your next Thanksgiving in the garage.


The rest of this interior is just de-vinyl and oddly there's a pair of American Tourister bags that the lunch counter in back seems to have been expressly built to accomodate. There's no claim made to mileage, and instead the seller goes against the grain by proposing this Beetle as the perfect Summer cruiser, just as the kids are heading back to school. He might also have some Red Devil fireworks that he thinks would be timely to peddle.


Okay, weird doesn't begin to describe the thinking behind some of these mods - and I didn't even mention the home floor register mounted dead center in the wood in back, serving as either engine venting or an impromptu hibachi. But what's really weird is that it all looks reasonably well done, and there's obviously been a good deal of thought and care that went into its construction. Still, I can't get over the feeling that the builder must have been a Shriner.

Whatever his denomination, he created something unique and as there's an ass for every seat, so too will there be someone who sees this and wonders where it's been all their life. The question is; will that specific individual also have the eighty five hundred bones the seller wants to let a new captain set sail?


So, what do you think, is $8,500 a price that should make someone say I would to this woodie? Or, for asking that much should its seller walk the plank?

You decide!


East Bay Craigslist or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to Rollo Grande for the hookup!

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