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“Worse Than You See?” 1974 Karmann Ghia


Unusually, the seller of this 1974 Karmann Ghia states that it is “worse than you can see.” It actually looks like a decent project to me, so who knows, perhaps it’s a bargain and we have an honest seller! Either way, the car is listed for sale here on eBay and is located in Jackson, California. Bidding is starting at $850 and there’s no reserve.


Apart from a flat tire and a mangled rear bumper, this view doesn’t look too bad to me, especially if it stays close to the initial bid! Maybe the seller’s opinion of the car is somewhat jaded by so many California cars having no rust at all! I also think this is one of the nicest angles to view a Karmann Ghia–it really highlights the curvy coupe aspects of the design.


Looking at the side of the body, I still don’t see a lot of rust, mainly dents and creases.


Unfortunately, the floor pan has not survived as well as the exterior. Pan replacement is certainly possible (and common on Volkswagen restorations), but it’s certainly not a one day job! The parts certainly aren’t hard to find or expensive–it looks like all are available here for less than $400–but you’d better be good at welding. It also looks like the car was originally the green color that is on the license plate light.


You’re also going to be doing something in the interior–at least seat covers to stop the vinyl edges cutting into you when you’re wearing those shorts in the summer. Yeah, I’ve been there. I do like the appearance of that third pedal. By the way, according to the seller, one blinker blinks and the other doesn’t. I wish they chose to tell us more about the car than that, but that apparently crucial electrical fact is all we have to work with.


Consequently, we don’t know if the engine is free, if it runs, if it’s original or anything else. I do like the different tail lights on each side and the mangled exhaust (not!) so you can count on replacing the exhaust at least. I’ll tell you what, I’d like to fix this one mechanically and perhaps warm up the engine and suspension but leave the cosmetics alone, then surprise some folks. What would you do?



  1. Jordan

    Pans are certainly no more than a day, a couple hours per side, if the heater channels are in good shape which these appear to be. Seems like a decent price for a solid car.

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  2. Howard A Member

    Are we talking about their grammar, or the car. The broken one sentence doesn’t make a lick of sense. Parts car. Hemmings has 44 listed, mostly convertibles, 5 figures. The coupes, not so much.

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  3. DAN

    blincker dont blinck. other blinker dont blink

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  4. Jumping g

    Ties are buried in the ground. Can hear the rust eating away the undercarriage. I would have to pass on this one .

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  5. D. King

    “looks worst than what you see” Um, what?

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    • Tommy

      Like the German woman said “ the Wurst is yet to come”!

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  6. Dolphin Member

    The seller’s comments are actually code for:
    “Don’t buy this car because it’s a P.O.S., but if you insist I will take your money”

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  7. Wayne Thomas

    Needs more Porsche engine swap.

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  8. Will

    The comments of the ad do say it runs. I assume “Non opped” refers to California’s bizarre registration rules but no worries about the engine being free.

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  9. Bobsmyuncle

    Doesn’t look scary from what I can see, pans are nothing.

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  10. scott

    I’d love to put a subie engine in this one!

    Like 0

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