Do Your Thing! 1970 VW Beetle

Despite being the victim of a poorly maintained clear coat paint job, this 1970 Volkswagen Beetle seems to be a perfect candidate for a daily driver classic. Beetles still have the same things going for them that they had when new: reliability, durability and parts availability and price. This particular car is available here on eBay and is located in Washington, North Carolina. The opening bid is $3,195 and there’s no reserve.

By 1970, Volkswagen was still using derivatives of its famous “Think Small” campaign from DDB. If you’re interested in learning more about what is possibly the most revolutionary ad campaign ever, take a look here. Their television ads were very similar, such as this one touting the larger engine made standard for the 1970 models. Even folks that didn’t particularly care for the little cars had to admit that they were tough, economical and got the transportation job done, while offering many opportunities for individual customization.

As you can see, some of the customization has taken place on this car. I’m pretty sure 1970 Beetles didn’t come with  two-tone paint, I know they didn’t come with clear coats, and they had chrome bumpers with a black stripe in the middle. The roof rack is certainly functional and to me adds to the utility of the vehicle.

Inside we have a slightly dirty but perfectly functional interior. After 103,000 miles and 47 years I have doubts about its originality, but this doesn’t really matter, does it? There are so many Beetles running around that I don’t think anyone would choose this example for a concours restoration anyway. The seller has done some recent work to get it mechanically up to snuff, including a complete brake rebuild with shoes, master cylinder, brake lines, wheel cylinders, and new reservoir. There’s also been an engine oil change, valve adjustment, timing set, carb adjustment done and a new distributor installed! To me, this perfectly functional classic deserves a home where it’s driven and enjoyed. What do you think?




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  1. DrinkinGasoline

    This was an attempt at making a later Type 1 to look like an earlier Type 1. Fail.
    Aftermarket interior no doubt. The best thing going for it is that it’s not a Super Beetle.

    • Blyndgesser

      I’ve seen several posts lately that expressed negative opinions about the Super Beetle. But none of them explain what exactly is wrong with the SB.

      • Dave Wright

        There were several issues, they were different, they were built in smog years so what should have been good engines were not as good as pre-smog versions, Mcphearson struts frequently failed, many had Automatic transmissions that didn’t help the car.

      • Puhnto

        Aside from them being the best VW Beetles made, people don’t like them because they’re not as cute as the originals. But they had larger engines and better brakes, the big rounded trunk lid gave them almost twice as much trunk space, they had a real dashboard and curved windshield that wasn’t literally in your face, and while not as cute, big round tail lights that were infinitely safer with amber turn signals and real backup lights. Plus large, easy-to-see front turn signals. (And believe me, when you drive a VWBug you want to be seen when making turns!) The 1973 still had a carburetor. I’m sorry but I don’t understand the negativity. Maybe it’s from people who’ve never driven a Super. I love mine. While it isn’t quite as cute as the older ones, it’s a much better car. (And I’ve only ever seen one with the “automatic.” I don’t believe they’re as prevalent as has been indicated.)

      • Dave Wright

        Puhnto…..the engines are the same size, the early supers had the same flat windshield and wheelbase as the normal Beetle that was built concurrently, brakes were the same upgraded ones used on the standard beetle of the time. The last beetles built came from Mexico and were not imported into the US……they were standard beetles.

      • Puhnto

        Yup. The ’71 and ’72 Super Beetles had the flat windscreen. All of the others from ’73 through ’79 had the larger windshield. ’73 was the first year for the big round tail lights. A lot of people with ones made from ’74 on, with fuel injection, didn’t like it and changed to carburetors. The Mexican standard model you mentioned did have a few features of the Supers (like the big round tail lights.) Anyway, I like them. It’s a delightful little car to drive around New England roads. My favorite pre-Super is the 1965.

      • Mike H. Mike H

        Dave Wright – by automatic transmission are you referring to the “Auto-Stick” transmission? While I’d agree that those didn’t contribute to the performance of an already underwhelming system, they were pretty ingenious considering that they were essentially a self-clutching 3-speed manual.

        I’ve been around and owned Type I VW’s since the early 1980’s, and the only actual A/T Beetles I’ve ever seen are ones which now sport front mounted domestic engines, or a few that got transplants from other air cooled VW products.

    • Puhnto

      Oh, never had trouble with my struts either. Just sayin.’

  2. DrinkinGasoline

    At hand, I have at least 4 suppliers for original fabric as well as 7 aftermarket suppliers for upholstery.

  3. DrinkinGasoline

    BTW…hows about a BF App for Smartphones and that other iPhone thingy ? Even us old folks are connected!

  4. grant

    Never understood the hate for Super Beetles. While they maybe didn’t look as clean as earlier ones, they actually made it into a decent car. I love old Bugs but let’s call a spade a spade. They were swing arm tuna cans, on wheels.

  5. Dave Wright

    So… did Mcphesrson struts do away with the swing arms? The standard VW front suspension was a transverse torsion bar, a very good system like the 356 Porsche.

  6. JW454

    The last type 1 I owned was a 1970 1600-DP w/4spd. Light pale yellow w/ black int. It was a great little car.
    As far as super vs. a standard T1… I’m in the camp that it’s a better car. Many improvements and an eye to safety put it in a higher class IMO.

    • Dave Wright

      We have a 71 that my sons in laws bought new that we are restoring right now……what is safer about the super? I need to look in my books….it might have some side reinforcement in the doors…….but can’t think of anything safer about them. All the newer VW’s have better brakes than the older ones. I used to t maintain some for customers that required strut replacement every early struts were terrible. Many people didn’t notice when they went bad but once shown it was obvious. An friend of mine was the sales manager for Gabriel shocks. He said warranty claims on struts nearly put the company into receivership.

      • Dave Wright

        Our 71 is a flat windshield super…….

  7. JoeT

    From a collectors viewpoint I prefer the 67 and earlier Beetles. From a drivers viewpoint I think the Super Beetle is a better car on the road. I currently have a European spec 76 1303 (Super) convertible that I have owned for 15 years. The advantage of the European spec cars is they have factory front disc breaks and a carbureted 1600DP non-smog engine. In 15 years of ownership I’ve never had any problems with the struts.

  8. Kurt

    I have a 74 SB and it came with a carb. I replaced the shoe brakes with discs and the stock muffler with headers. It gets me around just fine, but I am building a 2.0 liter engine so I can travel the So Cal freeways unafraid.

  9. Rustytech Member

    I don’t know what the controversy is all about. Both the bug and the super bug were great cars. The latter was a little better driving car, but that reflected improvement in engineering across the automotive market. My personal favorites were the oval window bugs, but I have restored and driven both, and they have all been fun to work on and fun to drive. I don’t care much for the two toning so I would paint it a period correct color.

  10. Mark S Member

    I had a 67 bug when I was in high school, it was my first car to this day I wish I kept it. Even though they had crappy heaters they were the best thing going in deep snow, just keep the speed and revels up and they were unstoppable. Mine got bought by some college guy who crashed it into the back of a lumber truck and totaled it. Dam near totaled himself too. So sadly I know mine is long gone. I always liked the look of they super beetles I thought they just looked like the bug had grown up. I knew a guy that had a 73 lime green with this same white interior it was a very cool car. Our Canadian winters have probably long ago killed that one off too.

  11. ned

    Will the old over idea bumpers fit a newer type beetle.?

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