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(Philly.com)   Volkswagen Beetle celebrates its 65th year since entry into the U.S. Let's remember the good old days when an American family of four could actually fit in one   (philly.com ) divider line 55
    More: Cool, Volkswagen Beetle, United States, Americans, turbo, terrestrial locomotion, Mini Cooper, manual transmission, TDI  
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871 clicks; posted to Business » on 18 Apr 2014 at 4:07 PM (1 year ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-18 03:26:20 PM  
upload.wikimedia.org
Wikipedia: Volkswagens were first exhibited and sold in the United States in 1949, but sold only two units in America that first year

Hardly an impressive U.S. debut.
 
2014-04-18 03:30:00 PM  
Five, Subby. The smallest got to ride in the little well behind the rear seat.
 
2014-04-18 03:35:10 PM  
Ah, my very first car. I loved that car. Went anywhere, never broke down, good on gas.
 
2014-04-18 03:52:28 PM  
Once upon a time, had 2x '73 Supers. Loved 'em. Miss 'em. Make plenty enough these days to completely restore them. Wish I still had 'em. They were good girls.
 
2014-04-18 04:06:03 PM  
My Mom had a '63, bought brand new for $1600.  Otto was its name.  It was a member of the family who lived in the garage.
 
2014-04-18 04:11:42 PM  
SLUGBUG!

imagizer.imageshack.us
 
2014-04-18 04:19:28 PM  
Ah, yes, the Hitlercar.
 
2014-04-18 04:25:36 PM  
CSB:  My parents bought a 1973 Super Beetle the year I was born.  In the following 30+ years they went through three or four other cars but the Beetle wouldn't ever die so they kept it as an "extra" car.  My brother and I drove the f*ck out of it when we were old enough to drive and it even WE couldn't kill it.  Yeah, it was under-powered but it was surprisingly fun to drive. Drove in the snow like a boss and went weeks without going to a gas station.  We sold it 10 years ago and I still miss that car.

Oh, and SLUGBUG RED!
 
2014-04-18 04:26:48 PM  
Beetles are ugly, loud, smelly, cramped, ill handling death traps.

/Loved my '71 Super
//Thinking about buying a '67
 
2014-04-18 04:40:15 PM  
Family of five, actually. My dad had one in Milpitas, CA in the 60s and would take his first wife, their daughter, and my grandparents into San Francisco. I can't imagine having to operate a car like a Beetle (which was designed with three pedals to be operated simultaneously by only two feet) with an underpowered engine, in San Francisco. That takes some real skill.
 
2014-04-18 04:43:23 PM  
My '75 Vert in various stages of disassembly.. I bought it (and a Gorgar pinball machine) back in the late 80s from a buddy who got married and had to ditch the toys.. Drove it for several years, then some asshole rear-ended it (forged DL and insurance, cops did diddly-shiat about it) and I parked it shortly thereafter.

I have new floor pans, new bumpers, new this and that, and have gradually (even in glacial terms it's been gradual) been working on it in my ever-dwindling spare time.

My goal is to spend at least 20 hours a month on it and get it back on the road by this fall, in time for the McKinney Oktoberfest VW show.

img.fark.net
The good side, no rust or dents in the entire driver-side body.  Not original paint, but a re-spray from back in the mid 80s as far as I can tell.

img.fark.net

This entire rear section was caved in.  I managed to pull it straight, and am using junk fender and bumper parts to validate trueness to factory specs.  Once I get things perfect I'll spring for some NOS rear fender and apron parts.

img.fark.net

After removing some bad fiberglass and tarboard patching, I discovered that the floors were basically thinner and more porous than your Aunt Gladys' couch arm doilies.  I have entire driver and passenger side floor pans with seat rails (old ones were dangling loose and the seat was sitting on plywood) so once I pull the body off it's a 2 day job to cut out the old ones, and seam-weld in the new, sand, paint, and seal with truck bed liner.

Anyway, end CSB.
 
2014-04-18 04:43:43 PM  
VW Beetles taught me everything I needed to know about semiconductors.

/obscure enough that I can't find it on Google
//just bought an Eos.
 
2014-04-18 04:47:38 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2014-04-18 04:49:42 PM  

Eddie Adams from Torrance: Beetles are ugly, loud, smelly, cramped, ill handling death traps.

/Loved my '71 Super
//Thinking about buying a '67


I had a 71 super as well. First year of the super. I sadly sold it for a lot less than it was worth.
 
2014-04-18 04:50:52 PM  
fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.
 
2014-04-18 04:55:17 PM  

North_Central_Positronics: Yeah, it was under-powered but it was surprisingly fun to drive. Drove in the snow like a boss and went weeks without going to a gas station. We sold it 10 years ago and I still miss that car.

Oh, and SLUGBUG RED!


You played Slugbug while riding inside a bug?  That must have been brutal.
 
2014-04-18 04:58:54 PM  

Jclark666: VW Beetles taught me everything I needed to know about semiconductors.


I read that story too, but it doesn't work.  Space charge density plays an important role, and there was nothing in the scenario in the story that would be analagous.

/Don't know the author either.
 
2014-04-18 05:02:48 PM  
You can fit ALL of the Branch Davidians. 2 up front, 2 in the back, and the rest in the ashtray.
 
2014-04-18 05:05:05 PM  

Mad_Radhu: [fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net image 850x634]

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.


I don't like them now... The big redesign was cool, but they changed the lines with this last rebranding that makes them look too much like every other car. They flattened the 'beetle' part and moved it towards the back. I wish they hadn't messed with the lines...
 
2014-04-18 05:05:46 PM  
carhumor.net

I think that's a Pratt-Whitney jet engine (maybe the JP-3?).
 
2014-04-18 05:09:19 PM  

flondrix: Jclark666: VW Beetles taught me everything I needed to know about semiconductors.

I read that story too, but it doesn't work.  Space charge density plays an important role, and there was nothing in the scenario in the story that would be analagous.

/Don't know the author either.


Yes, but I was a CS major, not CE or EE, so yes, that was all I needed to know about semiconductors.
 
2014-04-18 05:21:59 PM  
"How I Lost the Second World War and Helped Turn Back the German Invasion" by Gene Wolfe.

/so much shame for not realizing that was a Wolfe story, must eBay my entire Wolfe collection now
 
2014-04-18 05:48:59 PM  
Cause we all know where Volkwagen came from....

s2.hubimg.com
 
2014-04-18 05:50:58 PM  
Cause we all know where Volkwagen (The People's Car) came from....

s2.hubimg.com
Founded by the German Labour Front (or was it the Popular Front?). Here is the flag of the German Labour Front.

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2014-04-18 05:57:04 PM  
I own a 1970 Beetle, a 1969 Beetle convertible, and a fiberglass dune buggy built from a 1969 Beetle.  Thanks hitler car!
 
2014-04-18 05:58:18 PM  
img.fark.net
 
2014-04-18 06:38:56 PM  

Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: [fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net image 850x634]

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.

I don't like them now... The big redesign was cool, but they changed the lines with this last rebranding that makes them look too much like every other car. They flattened the 'beetle' part and moved it towards the back. I wish they hadn't messed with the lines...


That's actually what she likes about the new one, that instead of the car being a big bubble, the lines are closer to the original Beetle's profile, especially when you get around the area of the front windshield. The 90's redesign was real the one that was the odd car out when it came to the shape.

www.hisstylediary.com
 
2014-04-18 06:47:01 PM  
Had two buddies in HS that had early 70's Beetles. One was the 2 speed (3 with stump-puller) semi-auto. Would hit 55 downhill on the highway if you had a tailwind. Colder than a brass monkey in winter.
 
2014-04-18 06:54:57 PM  

Mad_Radhu: Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: [fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net image 850x634]

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.

I don't like them now... The big redesign was cool, but they changed the lines with this last rebranding that makes them look too much like every other car. They flattened the 'beetle' part and moved it towards the back. I wish they hadn't messed with the lines...

That's actually what she likes about the new one, that instead of the car being a big bubble, the lines are closer to the original Beetle's profile, especially when you get around the area of the front windshield. The 90's redesign was real the one that was the odd car out when it came to the shape.


I still think it looks off compared to the other 2, but that KS for the side by side, I figured it out...

The roofline looks squashed, look how much shorter the window height is, I think that what's making me think they moved everything back.

I see similarities between the original and either of the other 2 for sure, and it think the 'bubble' look was OK, only because the original kind of has a higher more rounded look IMHO.
 
2014-04-18 08:15:05 PM  

markie_farkie: My '75 Vert in various stages of disassembly.. I bought it (and a Gorgar pinball machine) back in the late 80s from a buddy who got married and had to ditch the toys.. Drove it for several years, then some asshole rear-ended it (forged DL and insurance, cops did diddly-shiat about it) and I parked it shortly thereafter ...

Independent rear? CV joints? What sorcery is that?

Like the red and red, that's a going to be a good looking ride.

 
2014-04-18 08:36:51 PM  
Csb

I had a '74 for my first car in the mid 90's. Reverse didn't work, gas gauge didn't work, lights sometimes worked, but man I loved that car. My sister took it without asking while I was at work (she was 14 at the time) and totaled it of course :(
 
2014-04-18 09:21:58 PM  

bingethinker: Five, Subby. The smallest got to ride in the little well behind the rear seat.


Only one?  I remember sharing that at some point...probably 1 adult and 6 kids in my neighbor's 66 Beetle.

More in the squareback they had next.
 
2014-04-18 09:35:53 PM  
Back on the farm, in the mid-70's, we had the Lancaster County Sports Buggy Club with their homemade buggies.

VW Beetles with the bodies ripped off, wheelbases shortened, welded bent-pipe roll cages, and a separate handle for the emergency brake on each rear wheel.

One guy had an aluminum beer keg for a gas tank, another one had a Corvair air cooled pancake six installed. Yet another had a Rolls Royce hood ornament on his.

God, that was a fun weekend!
 
2014-04-18 09:59:03 PM  
My baby in the garage:
img.fark.net
 
2014-04-18 10:18:44 PM  

bingethinker: Five, Subby. The smallest got to ride in the little well behind the rear seat.


50. You forgot the ashtrays.

/hump seat
 
2014-04-18 10:39:22 PM  
One of the girls I went to college with drove one, she was drunk and rolled it down a small but rocky incline.  Car looked like someone had stepped on it but she managed to drive it home.  None of the five kids that were crammed into it had a scratch either.   Those old bugs are built tough.
 
2014-04-18 10:40:24 PM  
upload.wikimedia.org

and...

www.famous-cars.net

Both are obligatory.
 
2014-04-18 10:53:45 PM  

bingethinker: Five, Subby. The smallest got to ride in the little well behind the rear seat.


I used to sleep in that.
 
2014-04-18 11:12:54 PM  
When I was a kid my parents would take us camping in a 70's beetle. To this day I have no freaking clue how the 4 of us plus a big assed canvas tent, food and sleeping bags all fit in the damn thing.
 
2014-04-18 11:35:44 PM  

Bob Falfa: Ah, my very first car. I loved that car. Went anywhere, never broke down, good on gas.


media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com
 
2014-04-19 12:51:30 AM  
Seven. Of course in the early 70's we also got to ride around in the back of a pickup on the freeway with no cap, seats or belts, so there's that too.

/we weren't allowed to sit on the wheel wells though, we weren't  reckless
 
2014-04-19 01:40:19 AM  
I am annoyed with subby. I was expecting an historical retrospective piece. Instead I got a new-car review with sales figures.
 
2014-04-19 02:38:31 AM  

ecmoRandomNumbers: Family of five, actually. My dad had one in Milpitas, CA in the 60s and would take his first wife, their daughter, and my grandparents into San Francisco. I can't imagine having to operate a car like a Beetle (which was designed with three pedals to be operated simultaneously by only two feet) with an underpowered engine, in San Francisco. That takes some real skill.


Wait.

Are you seriously explaining manual transmission as if it's some sort of historical anomaly, or did you not explain fully enough some strange aspect of driving the Beetle? If the former, I weep for humanity.

Or was that a joke? It's late.
 
2014-04-19 02:51:50 AM  

quo vadimus: ecmoRandomNumbers: Family of five, actually. My dad had one in Milpitas, CA in the 60s and would take his first wife, their daughter, and my grandparents into San Francisco. I can't imagine having to operate a car like a Beetle (which was designed with three pedals to be operated simultaneously by only two feet) with an underpowered engine, in San Francisco. That takes some real skill.

Wait.

Are you seriously explaining manual transmission as if it's some sort of historical anomaly, or did you not explain fully enough some strange aspect of driving the Beetle? If the former, I weep for humanity.

Or was that a joke? It's late.


Know how I know you've never driven a Beetle in winter?
 
2014-04-19 04:16:16 AM  
I remember when a family of four could afford one.
 
2014-04-19 10:44:10 AM  

Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: [fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net image 850x634]

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.

I don't like them now... The big redesign was cool, but they changed the lines with this last rebranding that makes them look too much like every other car. They flattened the 'beetle' part and moved it towards the back. I wish they hadn't messed with the lines...

That's actually what she likes about the new one, that instead of the car being a big bubble, the lines are closer to the original Beetle's profile, especially when you get around the area of the front windshield. The 90's redesign was real the one that was the odd car out when it came to the shape.

I still think it looks off compared to the other 2, but that KS for the side by side, I figured it out...

The roofline looks squashed, look how much shorter the window height is, I think that what's making me think they moved everything back.

I see similarities between the original and either of the other 2 for sure, and it think the 'bubble' look was OK, only because the original kind of has a higher more rounded look IMHO.


I love the new design. I call it the Nazi limosene because that's what it looks like to me.
 
2014-04-19 10:44:46 AM  
*limosine
 
2014-04-19 11:51:46 AM  

atomic-age: Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: Mikey1969: Mad_Radhu: [fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net image 850x634]

My wife loves her Turbo with all the extras.

I don't like them now... The big redesign was cool, but they changed the lines with this last rebranding that makes them look too much like every other car. They flattened the 'beetle' part and moved it towards the back. I wish they hadn't messed with the lines...

That's actually what she likes about the new one, that instead of the car being a big bubble, the lines are closer to the original Beetle's profile, especially when you get around the area of the front windshield. The 90's redesign was real the one that was the odd car out when it came to the shape.

I still think it looks off compared to the other 2, but that KS for the side by side, I figured it out...

The roofline looks squashed, look how much shorter the window height is, I think that what's making me think they moved everything back.

I see similarities between the original and either of the other 2 for sure, and it think the 'bubble' look was OK, only because the original kind of has a higher more rounded look IMHO.

I love the new design. I call it the Nazi limosene because that's what it looks like to me.


Now that makes me want to see one stretched and turned into a limo.
 
2014-04-19 12:00:14 PM  

Mikey1969: Now that makes me want to see one stretched and turned into a limo.


Can you imagine how slow that would be? It might not even be able to move depending on the engine displacement.
 
2014-04-19 12:41:24 PM  

Adolf Oliver Nipples: Mikey1969: Now that makes me want to see one stretched and turned into a limo.

Can you imagine how slow that would be? It might not even be able to move depending on the engine displacement.


I was thinking that it should only be a half length limo anyway, but even that might be too heavy. Maybe electric? Since an electric car just has a motor at each wheel and a bunch of batteries for its basic drive train layout, maybe it would work that way... Design the batteries to be shorter and wider and fit under the body of the car?

Kind of like the fuel cell car design they came out with 10 years or so ago, where they have the basic chassis they called the "roller skate".

Here it is. GM Hy-Wire.
http://auto.howstuffworks.com/hy-wire3.htm
 
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