Parked 35 Years Ago: 1962 Volkswagen Beetle

Montana DanfordBy Montana Danford

The ad for this Volkswagen claims it was recently brought out of storage after 35+ years.  Said to be all original, the 1962 Beetle is for sale here on eBay. With a little over 2 days left, and no reserve, the bid is up to $3,800.  The car is currently located in San Bernardino, California and is said to have lived its entire life in the state.

This car screams originality and the seller has a lot of information regarding its condition. You can tell that this car has been driven and enjoyed, but not beaten to death. There is the typical wear on the driver’s seat that you would expect from a car of this age. The passenger and rear seat show almost no wear. The headliner is also in need of some TLC, but this car could easily be driven as-is.

The door panels are in good shape and show the original coral and tan color.  You can also see the California black plates that are included with this purchase.  There were over 800,000 Beetles produced in 1962 which doesn’t make them the most desirable amongst VW fans, but with this cars originality, it will be a good purchase for someone.  The temptation would be to restore the car, but a car is only original once.  Would you drive it or restore it?

The ad states the car runs and drives extremely well.  It features the original 6 volt electrical system with a new battery.  The engine is a 1300 cc displacement making 40 horsepower.  While you won’t win many drag races, the engine is said to run like a top and has had a recent tune up.  It’s also said to have no leaks, no smoke and no strange noises.  The fuel system was gone through as well.

The new buyer should find this project to be fun and rewarding.  Whether or not there is a restoration in its future is the question.  If you were in the market for a vintage Volkswagen, and you were the winning bidder for this one, would you drive it as-is or restore it?

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Comments

  1. DrinkinGasoline

    I would restore it. There are tons of supplier options available at reasonable cost as well as huge support for tech.
    The VW Type 1 is one of the best vehicles to get into the hobby with. I’ve had my restored ’66 for nearly 23 years and it’s still as much fun as the day we found it.




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  2. Scott murphy

    I have had the good fortune to have owned several air-heads (’70 bus, ’71 beetle, ’71Karmann ghia convertible, ’73 Thing, ’83 Westy) and I’d sympatheticly restore this one. It’s lovely, just needs some love, maintenance, and attention. Beautiful vehicle; sort it well and enjoy not for the next decade or three.




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  3. Blueprint

    My Dad’s first new car was a ´62 Beetle, black but with the same color pattern inside. Nice survivor!




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  4. Sheldon Braffman

    I’d leave it as is. The price is reasonable, considering I paid $500.00 for my used ’59 Beetle in 1968…and given the $ increases of value since 1962. Oh, and a “Peace Sign” and a Tie-Dye T-Shirt to the buyer!




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  5. Stuart Rotan

    I remember the 1962 vw having the smaller license plate light. Seems like this larger one showed up about 1965. But it has been a long time ago.




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    • Royal

      I noticed this too. Herbie the Love Bug was a 63 and it had the narrow nubby shroud on it not this one which I thought came along later. Could have been replaced. Who knows.




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  6. Bob c.

    What’s up with that funky looking muffler? They usually had 2 tailpipes peering out where the 2 cut outs are below the bumper.




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    • Nick G.

      It’s aftermarket. I see a lot of Bugs with this pipe.




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  7. geezerglide85

    Is the deck lid and license plate light from a later car? I thought ’62s had a narrow light. Also appears to have been repainted as fender weltings have paint on them.And did ’62s have a roller style gas pedal? It’s a nice looking car, may not be completely original, but a great starting point for a restoration. Or just a really fun old VW




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    • Bob C.

      Good catch, geezerglide85. They did use the narrow light until 63. The lid is probably from a 1964 to 67.




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      • Royal

        Not a 67 as that was the one year only where it was squared off on the end.




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  8. don comfort

    The engine displacement doesn’t seem right. 65 and older were 1200cc, the 1300cc was a one year 1966 only. It went to 1500 in 67 if I’m not mistaken.




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  9. Miguel

    It seems odd the ad says the car was in storage for 35 years which would put it at 1982 when it has tags from 2004 on the plates.




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    • Superdessucke

      Good catch. Maybe they intended to bring it out for its 22nd anniversary in storage bash?




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    • Steve R

      The plate is probably from 1967 or 1968, considering they ran through the alphabet by late 1969 when they switched to blue. It might have started life in a different state since the rust pattern on the undercarriage isn’t typical of what you see on old cars from dry parts of the California.

      Steve R




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  10. John T

    I would drive it just the way it is except to replace the existing aftermarket muffler with a new performance exhaust.




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  11. Dan

    Wrong deck lid for 62




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  12. doug

    Engine appears to be at LEAST 1300, not a 1200 cc 40 hp like should be. Has later distributor and at least a ’68 carb. Exhaust is a header system. Engine lid should have T handle to hold closed.




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  13. John T

    I am concluding based on the much appreciated wisdom of the above comments that this Bug does not have the original engine. I do not have a bid on this and with the bidding currently at $4314 with a couple of days remaining to go higher I will once again just be a spectator.




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  14. jdjonesdr

    Leave it as is. Spray the engine with WD-40 and it will take care of itself.




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  15. Joe Haska

    Clean it and drive it!




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  16. TriPowerVette

    I used to work at BAP in the 1970’s, and sold many VW engines of all applications and outputs. I thought I was Superman, and never asked for help loading these engines into the delivery truck.

    One day, I was feeling especially full of myself, and pulled up to a building where there was a pretty girl who liked me and reciprocally, I was trying to impress. I got into the back of the truck and picked up the engine.

    Here, I was about to get a practical demonstration of high school physics (at which I excelled, but this is proof that girls make you stupid).

    Yes… I clutched the little mill tightly to me, and jumped off the tailgate.

    No, I didn’t drop it (my ego would never have recovered), but the carburetor stud carved a little memento of the occasion, just above my belly button. It is a scar that I carry to this day, and a reminder that I am in fact NOT Superman.




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    • Bill Rosen

      That is a great story! Girls–and even cars–do make guys stupid. When my daughter was about 7 or 8 we were at a nearby park. We noticed a group of boys on their skateboards doing tricks, while a group of girls stood by and watched. I asked my daughter, “What do you think those boys are doing?” She replied, “They’re showing off for those girls.”




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      • TriPowerVette

        Thanks, Bill. Your daughter was correct.




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  17. GlenK

    A few things about this car, The engine hood is 64 to 66 and the headliner has been changed at some point as it should be felt like. Wheels should be 2-tone of some sort. That exhaust is newer, so unless the owner just switched it it is not that old, so maybe the car was not in storage that long. But this is all minor as the car appears to be solid, and almost everything is available for it




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  18. John C Cargill

    I might fix the seat, maybe paint that cool extractor exhaust but then drive it. Those old VWs were fun.




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  19. Jack Quantrill

    In Hawaii in ‘62, VW hired a bunch of students to drive new VW’s from the dock to the dealers. What a blast, and to get paid to do it. We drove them flat-out, and they arrived hissing, and popping. Hundreds of them.




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    • John T

      Maybe VW hired a bunch of students in California as well. That might explain why this Beetle apparantly does not have the original engine!




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  20. David Miraglia

    Can’t afford the Healy but the Beetle is right in my price range.




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  21. Chris

    Those don’t look like 62′ tail lights.




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  22. Steve

    Death trap.




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  23. John T

    Bidding is currently at $4550 as of 8PM MST (10PM EST, 7PM PST) with less than an hour remaining in the auction and selling at no reserve. Any guesses on the winning bid? I’m thinking $5000 (TOPS) and hope that the seller is happy with that.




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    • John T

      BANG Goes the Hammer … SOLD for $5500. Bidding was at $4900 with just two (2) minutes remaining and then went crazy ending up much higher than I thought it would.




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  24. tommy

    I had many bugs. The deck lid should have a turtle shell for the license plate light and smaller taillights. Looks like a 1200CC 40hp so that looks right.




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  25. CaCarDude

    Too much rust for me, I still like the old Bugs but this car has way to many issues. Totaled a ’57 in ’66 and bought a ’56 I drove for several years, rear ended a Rustang in ’67 and later same year hit a Mule Deer North Tahoe at 45 mph. Replaced hood and lights bumper etc, kept driving another year till Uncle Sam got me. The older solid Bugs were near indestructible. The ’62 here looks like it spent time in or very near the Pacific.




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  26. CaCarDude

    Just looking at the pics I could point out so many issues such as wrong deck lid, fender welt missing or painted, rear license bracket missing, rear window trim looks bent & pop loose, the after mkt. empi exhaust from the 60’s, rear seat belt(s) added, broken half round horn ring broke off missing, newer am fm Blaupunkt radio, would be 12vdc, maybe old owner updated car to 12v? Also Hood center trim and hood porcelain badge missing, both running board lower ss trim missing, rattle can o’spray on both seat frame sides, the list could go on if I could see in person.
    See the car has sold now, hope the new owner does not have buyers remorse….he is facing a good project and I hope he can put this back on the road without too much trouble.




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