Beauty In The Eye Of The Beholder: 1962 VW Beetle

One look and you know – you either love it, or hate it. This 1962 Original Paint Beetle is primed to be that classic Rat Rod you’ve dreamed about. And the owner claims it’s in good running and driving condition, so this project can be more about patina then parts. Good thing is, there’s a long list of parts that come with.

For many hot rod purists, the Rat Rod has become the symbol of freedom and revolution against the perfectly posh Hot Rod – instead glorifying the raw awe of man and machine, without throwing the family fortune away in the process. Found here on eBay, you could customize a bit (I’d have fun one weekend making a set of reclaimed steel bumpers and wire in some speakers), add back the original seat belts and hub caps that are included, and then hit the open road with Springsteen, Seger and Thorogood playing a bit too loud.

Having proudly stripped a ’64 Bug to the bone (a donor for a 550 Spyder kit), I know the pain associated with bad floor pans, so having a solid base for your build would set you off on the right step. The seats look relatively tear free, and other than the radio, most of the interior accessories seem to be still in place. Luckily, there’s a ton of competition in aftermarket parts (like the radio for example) so you won’t break the bank finding what you need to make it your own.

If you can see yourself “working on those night moves” in a killer patina ’62 bug – rumbling down the road in your own piece of Rat Rod history, then this just might be the perfect project to take on!


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  1. Sanity Factor

    Seat belts were not required in 62

  2. Mike B

    Pretty much how I see all Beetles.

  3. OA5599

    Flame-broiled patina.

    • Jeffro

      Love it. I needed the laugh

  4. RoKo

    ‘Patina’ -too lazy and/or cheap to give a car a proper paint job.
    If I bought this car, the most difficult task would be deciding what colour it will be painted.

    • Scott

      Its an original black car, hard to find, and only original once.

    • Kevin

      Why do you think the person is either “too cheap,or too lazy” to paint the car!!?? Why can’t someone just keep the car the way they find it and cleaning it up and preserving the look. Why must people always bash someone for not “restoring” a car. I own a few patina bugs and I love the way they look. I built them for me p, not you!

  5. RoughDiamond rough diamond Member

    That is a deal for a solid unmolested Bug with all the mechanical work done. If it were closer, I’d sure take a look. I’ve just bought my last long distance vehicle purchase because sooner or later one will get burned.

  6. DonC

    Thanks for the flashback! I had a ’63 just like this one that took me to and from college in the early 80s. Had a heater/burner under the front bonnet that used the gas from the tank. I froze my ass off during Ohio winters! And I had to weld angle iron from the front post to the rear to keep the floor propped up and level. The battery was under the rear seat and bouncing along the Cleveland shore way in a blizzard, you guessed it, the dang thing fell through the floor and disintegrated! But I put a pair of shelf speakers behind the rear seats and with the curved roof, Springsteen never sounded better. Loved that car!

  7. Rube Goldberg Member

    It’s beautiful. You know why? It’s far more representative of what we would have bought for $100 bucks just out of high school. A friend had a ’58. Had a lot of fun in that Vdub.

  8. Milt

    I see it has the mandatory roof rack. Never ever saw a bug with one mounted back in the day.

  9. TBAU Member

    I bet it even has that wonderful VW interior smell; part exhaust fumes, part petrol (gas), part aged roof lining…

  10. Mark S

    I agree with RoKo the big dilemma would be what colour to paint it. Right now all I see is a shabby car that has been neglected rustina is the begining of the end, if you want to still see this car around for another 40 or 50 years it needs to be addressed know before its to far gone. When this rat rod phase is over so will it be for most of these rat buckets. The fact is that the body parts are just as important as the mechanical parts. As far as originality is concerned that starts to slip away after the first oil change or tire change or brake job, you get the picture. If I can change out the spark plugs than why not the paint. This it’s only original excuse for not maintaining the body is just that an excuse.JMO.

  11. Warrior-Woman

    High gloss black and re-chromed – perfection.

    I remember when I was a kid in the mid-1960s, my family drove cross-country a couple of times on vacation, and one game we dreamed up was counting VW bugs; first one to get to a hundred got ice cream for dessert. In those days they were everywhere, and it wasn’t hard to find 100 – or more – in less than an hour. Who’d have thought they’d become rarities?!?

  12. Rick Borstein

    I had a 71 Super Beetle as my first ride. Lots of good times! Picked up the body up and over the engine to change the clutch. I’m not a fan of “patina” myself. I like shine and chrome, but to each his own.

  13. Mickey Dorsey

    Just saw one at a car show that looked JUST LIKE this one. The guy had clear coated the whole thing to preserve the “patina”. I’m too old…I don’t get this patina thing. Cars like this deserve a good restoration…sorry!

  14. Peter K

    Thats a 6 volt car originally unless the owner has upgraded it to a 12V neg ground. I had 1964 beetle . It was my first car. Paid $25 for it and it took me to bike races everywhere.

  15. Steve

    I’d drive it the way it is with a sticker on the back saying: “No, I’m not going to paint it.”

  16. David Miraglia

    always loved the original beetle and I don’t care what year it is. Its a must have…

  17. Bob

    Here’s one I found just across the border in New Hampshire.

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