1 Of 2? 1963 Behrens Roadster

Kit cars were all the rage in the 1960s and 1970s. Several prominent names often come to mind, like the Meyers Manx, Blakely Bantam, Bradley GT and McBurnie Ferrari 250 GTO. But the Behrens is not a name I was familiar with. This 1963 Behrens doesn’t look quite like anything else I’ve seen, and we’re told only two of them were built. Using a VW engine and transmission, I’m guessing it also has a VW chassis. This very rare set of wheels is in Parksville, British Columbia and available here on craigslist for $24,000. Thanks, Matt R, for digging this one up for us!

The usual process for a kit car to turn into a finished vehicle is to start with a set of exterior and interior parts that a company makes and the buyer then assembles them into a functioning car. As a rule, many of the mechanical components such as the motor and transmission come from donor vehicles or new from other vendors. Kits will vary in completeness, from as little as a book of plans all the way up to a completely assembled car. We’re not sure where this Behrens fit in that process.

This roadster of sorts comes with a hand-built fiberglass body that looks different than other sports cars on the highways in the 1960s. Perhaps fitted with Volkswagen underpinnings, it comes with a 4-speed manual transmission, dual port carburetors and headers. As a convertible with headrests built into the body, it comes with a canvas top that the seller says is like new. Apparently, the car has made the show circuit and it has a few trophies of its own that will pass along to the next proud owner.

At 42,000 miles, this special car looks to be in excellent condition, both inside and out. The windshield wraps around sort of like the 1953-55 Chevy Corvette. We’re told its always been garaged and that’s where an automobile like this should be when not being shown off. It’s registered in British Columbia which we assume will cause no issues for someone wanting to title it in the U.S. The seller is doing what half the population is doing now, downsizing his collection (the other half is upsizing theirs!). It would be great to hear from our readers if they know anything about the other half of the duo that was built.

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. Mikefromthehammer

    I still recall (many years later) a student at my high school in the Seventies who had a Beetle with a Rolls Royce front end grafted on the front. I assume the RR part was a kit car part, but I never asked.

    Like 3
    • Will Irby

      I knew someone who had a Pinto with RR treatments on the front and rear deck lids. We called it the Pimpto. Four of us went to the 1974 Gatornationals in that car, and it got more attention than most of the race cars.

      Like 7
      • Steve R

        The people that paid more attention to your friends Pinto had no taste.

        Steve R

        Like 1
      • Will Irby

        Steve R, no argument here; it was hideous. With four of us inside and our camping gear piled on top of the car, our top speed was about 65, plus or minus about 10 mph depending on whether we were going uphill or downhill. Top speed increased to 85 on the way back, after losing everything we had when a campfire spread to the tent while we were away from the campground.

        Like 2
    • Tom Wasney

      I think JC whitney catalog sold those conversion kits back in the day…

      Like 5
  2. Ed Hardt

    Nice. It looks like a car you would see in the old Speed Racer cartoon.

    Like 11
  3. Howard A Member

    I can handle most that comes through here, but this is HIDEOUS. You know, of the many kit cars over the years, I don’t think a one ever had the correct proportions. The ’65 Chevy tail lights, nice touch. Got to admit, pretty far out there. I would truly be embarrassed to be seen in this. Looks like one of those “3 in 1” models, where the builder made all 3 into one.

    Like 21
    • christopher swift

      “builder made all 3 into one.”

      I couldn’t help it, I could never make up my mind. Maybe it was the glue.

      Like 9
  4. Will Irby

    My thoughts exactly! I know I also have seen the other pair of tail lights somewhere, but not sure where–maybe an imitation of an earlier Rolls? It looks like the hood scoop from the 3 in 1 model was grafted onto the trunk lid, and I’m pretty sure the hood ornament is a cabinet handle from Home Depot. VW turn signals on the front fenders?

    Like 3
  5. CCFisher

    Two built? This isn’t rare, it’s a failure. How would you even get in it? I know I’d never squeeze my torso through that 8″ opening between that repurposed rear window and the door jamb.

    Like 2
  6. Steve Clinton

    Looking at this monstrosity, I can understand why there are only 2.

    Like 2
  7. princeofprussia

    Wow. This puts the “UG!” in UGLY!

    Like 2
  8. Phips

    Thats a cool looking car but those “hubcap” fake wires are terrible

    Like 1
  9. Brett Behrens

    Never knew a car had my last name, but that thing is hideous.

    Like 2
  10. Howie Mueler

    It says it gets a lot of attention, yes but for all the wrong reasons!!

    Like 1
  11. DavidL Member

    A couple of nice touches but like most of these the rest is kind of overdone or underdone. Headrests overdone. hood ornament underdone; taillights overtone/too many; interior-looks nice but not ‘sports car’ enough. Can see what they were going for but just doesn’t work.

    Like 2
  12. Daniel Wright

    There is so much out of proportion hideousness going on here that there is no good place to start. It looks like a Jaguar E Type had a baby with its sister. Did a ton of meth and dropped the baby off a cliff. I know some people say respect the build but DAMN this is a flaming hot mess.
    That looks like a door handle off something for a hood ornament. Maybe they had an extra and were sniffing too much glue.

    Like 3
  13. Frozenbird

    A ‘rolling work of art’ this is most definitely is not. Putting on a nice set of rims and tires would help, the wire hub caps are terrible. Also period correct seats with upholstery that actually goes with the car would help as well. The way this car looks in pictures is almost offensive, maybe it’s better in real life……?

    Like 1
  14. Bill McCoskey

    That “hood ornament” is simply a VW Front hood handle and push button.

    I would love to know what vehicle the outer rear lights are from.

    Like 1
  15. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    Those RR front ends were seen quite a lot in the Seattle Tacoma area in the late 60’s early 70’s. Also a bumper sticker that said “my other car is a Rolls Royce”.
    In those days I worked for Boeing Airplane Company and I saw those silly things on a daily basis. As far as this kit car goes taste is a matter of personal persuasion.
    God bless America

  16. Elanguy

    Oddly enough this is the second one of these shown on Barnfinds. And the son of the creator commented the last time one of these showed up.
    https://barnfinds.com/mystery-car-could-it-be-a-devin/

    Like 2
  17. Pat

    I think the “hood ornament” is just the trunk latch off of the donor VW, serving the same purpose as when it was on the VW, to open the trunk.

  18. dogwater

    Come on guys we have seen worse kits its kind of space E

  19. Tom Wasney

    Those are the cheapestass hubcaps from years back also, I just remember them rusting up like crazy on cars

  20. Claudio

    The person that chooses to buy this pos , deserves to be tarred and feathered and thrown into this horor story and possibly physically harmed

    Was reading camping stuff while working out and saw this one !

    As the saying goes, you can’t fix stupid, BUT, you can muffle the sound with duct tape.

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