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Easy Restoration: 1984 L’Automobile Ventura

While its name may give you the impression that this interesting little car hails from France, nothing could be further from the truth. The Ventura is a product of the L’Automobile company in Brazil. It is an unusual car that has some pretty familiar underpinnings, and it has been listed for sale with an asking price of $8,700. Barn Finder Roger spotted this little car for us, so thank you for that Roger. The Ventura is located in Goshen, Connecticut, and is listed for sale here on Craigslist.

There are times when it feels like the original Volkswagen Beetle and its derivatives weren’t designed so much as an affordable people’s car, but as the base for kit car builders to experiment with. That is precisely what the Ventura is. Hiding under that interesting and not unattractive fiberglass body is a Volkswagen frame, floors, and mechanical components. The finish on the body looks a bit tired and patchy, so I suspect that a repaint is in order. The frame is apparently solid, but the owner does acknowledge that it will need floors. Thankfully, it appears that the car is complete because I really don’t know exactly how hard it would be to locate the Ventura-specific items.

The interior of the Ventura is an interesting amalgam of bits and pieces, with some components, mainly items like gauges, being very obviously Volkswagen items. The door trims and carpet look like they’re in good condition, but the rest of the interior looks distinctly scruffy. I would like to know what state the seats are in under the aftermarket seat covers, because if they are okay, then that’s a real bonus. I have to admit that they do look really comfortable.

If you open the rear hatch on the Ventura, you will find a flat floor. Lift that and what you will find is the venerable 1,795cc Volkswagen flat-four engine, which is hooked to a standard VW 4-speed manual transmission. While the car looks reasonably exotic, its saving grace is the fact that because it is based on a VW, mechanical components are cheap and easy to source. The owner doesn’t mention whether the car goes or stops, but it’s essentially a Volkswagen, so fixing any issues is likely to be a relatively inexpensive exercise.

The owner claims that this L’Automobile Ventura is one of less than ten cars in the USA. While I have found no evidence to confirm this, I’ve also found nothing to the contrary. It is an unusual little car, and it definitely has a different appearance to the majority of kit cars that tend to do the rounds. It is a hard car to pin a value to, but I have managed to find a couple of cars that sold between four and five years ago, and both sold for around the $5,500 mark. I’m well aware that this little car is not everybody’s cup of tea, but if you were looking for a car that’s a bit unusual, and is going to be cheap to restore and to maintain, then this really has to be a contender. I won’t be in the least bit surprised if the owner gets his price, and I really wouldn’t blame someone for wanting to buy it.


  1. ghalperin Glenn Halperin

    I like it. That type III motor is probably a 1600. I’d like it more if it actually had a type IV drivetrain, as stated in the ad.

    Like 2
    • Ken

      Who cares nothing happens before you make it into min 1864ccm with twin carbs…then t becomes fuuun😀

      Like 1
  2. KevinLee

    Nice body lines. The front end, while being very simplistic, is appealing to me.

    Like 4
  3. RedBaran

    This car looks like it was built in a Lego factory.

    Like 3
  4. OrangeKrate

    Kinda want to know more about the scoop on the ‘Vette.

    Like 0
    • minicoopermk1

      I don’t think it’s a scoop. Blow it up enough and it looks like a black bag of some sort just sitting on the hood.

      Like 0
      • OrangeKrate

        oops, so it is!

        Like 0
  5. KevinLee

    I think that’s a Kaiser, not a ‘Vette.

    Like 0
    • OrangeKrate

      The silver stingray with red lines? I think that white convertible with whitewalls is a Kaiser.

      Like 0
      • Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member

        It IS a Kaiser, a KF-161, commonly known as a Kaiser Darrin.

        Like 0
  6. Ike Onick

    How much for the compressor?

    Like 3

    that rudder is from a belgian stampe biplane…renault or gypsy major upside down 4…a sweetheart, more acrobattical than tiger moth…be blessed, grateful, prepared..

    Like 0
  8. jr sp

    its made using vw sp2 of Brazil. in 1974 .

    Like 0

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