If you were into hot-rodded Beetles during the Late Malaise Era, as I most certainly was, you probably remember the small-print ads for the "Pinto Beans" adapter kit from the back pages of your favorite VW magazines.


There was a certain demented-yet-awesome logic behind the concept: ditch your Beetle's lightweight, air-cooled Type I engine and replace it with a heavier, water-cooled engine of much larger displacement. Hey, with a Baja you'll be hacking off the rear body anyway, right? The creator of junkyard-worshiping Patinaproof spotted this fine Pinto Bean-ated Baja at a local South Bay self-service wrecking yard last week and sent in a few photos for our enjoyment. He has since gone back and pulled the adapter plate and flywheel, which he plans to sell to an ambitious 24 Hours of LeMons team, so it's too late for the rest of you to score this setup for the engineless Baja Bugs rusting in your driveways.

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