1995(!) One-Owner VW Beetle!

The final “traditional” (read that as rear-engined) VW Beetle sedan sold in the US left the dealership sometime in 1977 (the convertible soldiered on until 1979). However, traditional Beetle production continued until the last one was produced in Mexico in 2003. There are ways to legally import these later Beetles and this one is a one-owner one originally purchased from the VW dealer in Guadalajara, Mexico in October of 1994. It’s listed for sale here in the Barn Finds Classifieds for $14,900 and is located in Nashville, Tennessee.

The car appears extremely original and is believed to only have traveled 50,000 km from new. The Beetle did evolve a bit over time, and this car features a Bosch Digifant-II computer-controlled fuel injection system (not to be confused with the L-Jetronic system from the 1970s), front disc brakes, hydraulic valve lifters (no adjusting the valves), and screw on oil filter all standard from the factory.

There’s also this gorgeous roof rack for more utility!

Aside from a stained headliner and a few cracks in the right rear C-post upholstery, the interior looks like a good cleaning would bring it back to factory new condition. I don’t remember US Beetle seats looking that comfortable–did they change much?

At first, I was thinking that this compares favorably with later-model classic Beetles, but I think I would press this car into use as a daily driver! Beetles have always been tremendously reliable, and there’s enough power there for me to enjoy puttering around. What would you do with this Beetle?


  1. angliagt angliagt Member

    A friend of mine who was working in Germany told me
    that he bought a new Beetle (1985?),& it cost him $3000.

  2. alphasud Member

    I still think the German Beetle had a better build quality but I may be wrong. The L-jet worked just fine if the engine was healthy but the Digifant adds adaptive strategies to compensate for engine wear. This one should have a O2 sensor and a 3-way catalyst. You can still find dealer A/C kits for these where the A/C condenser is in the back unlike the 70’s Beetle where it took up room in the Frunk. So that might be the ticket if you live in the south.

    Like 5
    • Vincent

      Right on the money with the Digifant. Build quality is right up there with the German made, for this year at least. I know as production continued into the 2000s those have more plastic components like mirrors and bits like that, but otherwise very comparable.

  3. Tony Henderson


    Like 2
    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Palmer Staff

      Thanks, Tony…fixed it.

  4. joenywf64

    Oddly, i would expect these very high profile 80! series tires to have much more visible rubber on the sidewall, like the ridiculous 225 70r 15 tires fitted to most ’70s t/a’s.
    Is 55/80R15 the correct stock factory size tire?
    I wonder why VW bugs were not fitted with lighter 14″ or even 13″ wheels & tires for better accel & mpg.
    Even the early ’65 v8 mustangs were fitted with 13″ wheels!
    I would think a restrictive cat conv & tougher emissions equipment would make these later bugs even slower than the old ones! & those with a/c (turned on) would be insanely slow, espec trying to merge onto a very fast interstate highway.

    Like 1
    • Vincent

      Yo Joe! Even with the emissions this bug is fast and ultra responsive for a Beetle. I get up to 70+mph without breaking a sweat. No dead spots. Just smooth power. It’s like a baby Porsche. Check out the video on it. My cousin driving down the freeway. Thanks Joe!

      Like 4
      • joenywf64

        Are you sure that bug’s engine has not been souped & the cat conv is still on there? If it has a/c, i guess the compressor cuts out when the driver floors it, like on many modern cars when trying to merge with speeding traffic that most likely is going over the speed limit even in the “slow” lane .
        & say yer prayers if the on ramp merges with the fast lane!
        I am not impressed with the HP of the 1.6 fuel injected bug engine below, considering the 1.6 with tiny carb in the ’76 chevette has 9 more hp! & both cars are probably the same weight – i know the Chevette is dawg slow in accelerating.
        & the HP of the smallest bug motor is just plain ridiculous …
        With today’s expressway traffic & crazy speeding inattentive drivers, it’s not so much how fast a bug can go, but how “fast” or soon it can get up to the speed of “most” of the other cars!
        These days, i would not even TRY to get on a highway that has a speed limit >45 mph with any bug or Chevette. lol

        Like 1
      • Dave

        Modern cars are “drive by wire”. There’s no direct connection between the engine and your right foot. When you floor it, you’re asking permission from the engine management system to go faster. On my two Patriots, this results in a noticeable lag while the various departments converse amongst themselves to decide upon a course of action. Things like:
        Deactivate air conditioning compressor! Check.
        Increase fuel pressure! Check.
        Open throttle to maximum! Check.
        Contract transmission control computer. Request downshift. Check.
        These things take time…an annoying, possibly dangerous amount of time.

        Like 3
    • Vincent

      She’s super stock (no mods whatsoever aside from the roof rack I added). Cat definitely still on there. I passed emissions in my city (Nashville, TN) with it. No a/c on this one. Sure she only has about 46hp or so, but she’s “fast” for a Beetle.

      Check it out in my video!


      She keeps up on the highway and gets up to speed quickly. While she’s not breaking any records and you will still be passed by the 80mph+ drivers, she was a comfortable for me on a 1200 mile drive. :D

  5. Ed H

    Awesome! I love to see how the engine evolved but is still true to it original form.

    Like 2
  6. flynndawg

    i see 3 pedals but looks like a column shifter or am i just blind… ??? i owned a 63 and 67 back in the day… wish i had kept the 67…

    • Paul Jackson Member

      I can just see the shift knob through the wheel under the shiny object. Wasn’t one lever for the hi/lo switch and the other for windshield wipers etc

      Like 2
    • Pleease

      I think that’s something else – wipers? Through the steering wheel think I see the shine of a black gearshift knob….unless we’re both blind, lol.

      Like 2
    • Vincent

      Hey Flynndawg,

      Its the wiper and and signal arms on the column!


      Like 1
  7. Ex DMV guy

    A dealer in Connecticut was selling new Mexican built Beetles in the 90s and he was stopped by the DMV because they weren’t in compliance with U.S. safety and emission standards. Buyer should check out their state’s policy before buying

    Like 1
    • Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

      If it’s more than 25 years old it doesn’t need to pass DOT FMVSS

      Like 2
      • Dave

        Especially if you register it as a classic, antique, or historic car.

        Like 1
      • grant

        A lot of states are refusing to license private imports lately.

        Like 1
    • Vincent

      I think I saw that guy. I think its Ross VW right?

      I cannot speak for every state, but if a DMV is willing to accept a standard Tennessee title, you should not encounter an issues. Nevertheless sound advice.

      For example you could title this in California, and even though it would pass a smog test there, it plays by its own rules and I hear it requires a special laboratory test for all special imports like this Beetle regardless how it performed on its smog results.

  8. NHDave

    Uncalled for, immature, and inappropriate for this site.

Leave a Reply to flynndawg Cancel reply

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Keep me in the conversation via email. Or subscribe without commenting.