VW Beetle 1302 Restoration (2017 – 2021 target)

This restoration project is still ongoing as we speak (February 2020) and has been updated with the progress made till date – Work In Progress!

After having been working on a VW Beetle, a 1972 1302 type which I bought in 2015, for a couple of years, I had to admit that this one was beyond repair – too much rot, this would be a never ending story. Nonetheless this was a good first project to get started, a good introduction into VW Beetles and a such not a waste, in particularly not as I kept this one as a donor car for future use (engine, gearbox, all sorts of nuts and bolts, basically everything except for the body and chassis).

It was in 2017 that I bought my second VW Beetle, again a 1302 type, this time from 1971. This was not a coincidence, I am one of the few that prefer the 1302 type – it has the improvements over the standard Beetle yet still looks like the standard Beetle – I frankly don’t like the looks of the 1303 type with the large and curved front screen and large tail lights. Don’t be offended, this is just personal taste!

Equipped this time with more knowledge on the typical Beetle aging sensitivities this buy was a much better one. In June 2017 I was the proud owner of a 1302 with original steel sliding roof, red leatherette interior and in the original Pastle White (L90D) color. Some impression pictures below. This time I would do it right, so I first enjoyed the summer driving this car till winter – the time to get started. We didn’t really set a deadline to finish this project, but business travel and setbacks normally make this a multi year endeavor! It would be great to start driving this car again when it aged 50 years old – 2021!

The key / major events in chronological order

June 9th, 2017Bought the car
September 9th, 2017Start of restoration, initially planned for a rolling restoration
May 8th, 2018A rolling restoration is not for me, patching things knowing not all is done – the divorce happened – chassis and body are separated, we go all the way on this project.
February 15th 2020Decision taken to replace all electrics
March 2020Approaching the finish of the body work – doing the paint job myself or not?
2021If time allows, the target finish date of project (let’s see)