The Original Concept 1: 1966 VW Dune Buggy

VW-based dune buggies come in all shapes and sizes, an impressive variety that reflects the individual tastes of the many small companies that built their own kits. This well-preserved build is known as a Concept 1 kit, which is ironic considering the reincarnation of the VW Beetle had the same moniker on the show car circuit. Find this wire-wheeled creation here on craigslist in South Florida for $7,700. 

The seller doesn’t call this a fresh restoration, so there’s a chance it has simply survived in a high state of preservation since originally built. The whitewall tires are new, and those along with the polished wire wheels are a take-it-or-leave-it feature. While most of the dune buggies form this era struck a more sporting / off-road look, this Concept 1 appears more luxurious by comparison.

That’s not saying much in a crude machine like this, but it still does look far nicer inside than most Meyers-Manx replicas. Speaking of, we still have a rare HowellCraft Meyers-Manx tribute buggy for sale as a Barn Finds Exclusive – message me if you’re interested. But if this a more finished buggy is what you’re aiming for, this Concept 1 looks like a fine place to start. It’s not mentioned whether paint is original, but it’s in very nice shape.

The 1600 cc VW mill is said to run well and obviously benefits from lots of dress-up parts. Overall, there’s a feeling that the builder of this kit liked chrome and didn’t want their VW buggy to blend into the South Florida landscape, which likely resembled a sea of Meyers-Manx replicas at one point in time. Is the $7,700 asking price justified given the completeness of the kit? Thanks to Barn Finds reader Pat L. for the find.


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  1. Rick

    All it’s missing is the engine cover. And it has a unique headlight mod that eliminates the typical ‘frog-eye’ look so common to these kits. This one has been for sale for a while. It’ll take a certain person to entertain it though – these buggies are near impossible to get in and out of. Many owners added steps to the side pods.. would not be a bad addition on this one.

  2. Rock On

    I’m sure that a period correct set of polished aluminum slots with raised white letter tiires would improve the looks of this car 100%. Would be scared to drive it to beach because you would be cleaning the sand out of those wire wheels for weeks.

    Like 6
    • DayDreamBeliever Member

      And you have got to love the Mustang tail lights.

      Like 1
  3. Jerry

    That Chrome on the engine has to be new. It would rust in a week in South Florida!

    Like 1
  4. Uncle al

    I just purchased a MINT BMW 840 CI with 90,000 miles for less than that !

  5. Wrong Way

    I like it! I am not sure about the price tho! However, I looked at a nice one the other day and they are asking 10,000 for it!

    Like 1
  6. ken TILLY Member

    This is called an Aqua-Bug and was manufactured in South Africa.

  7. carbuzzard Member

    I get all nostalgic when I see a dune buggy. In the late sixties when I was in college, I really lusted after a Manx or the like…but talk about impractical in central Illinois. Not only was they open air and had no heater, they really weren’t big enough to “park” in.

    Couldn’t afford a car anyway. (That’s one way we graduated without massive debt, though the growing lack of support for state schools is probably a bigger factor).

  8. James Roach

    I bought it Wow what a piece of JUNK, Motor needed rebuilt

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