I need headlights for a 1984 VW Cabriolet. It has two large bulbs. I would like to get brighter ones than the original. The car does have a 12 volt system.Does anyone have any suggestions? All help will be greatly appreciated. z thank you.
They are doing wonderful things with LED retrofits these days, but I would make sure you see some pictures with the headlights 'on' before making any purchases because some of the LED options do look a little ridiculous
Your best bet is to do an H4 headlight conversion, which means you get to upgrade to the European headlight beam without going overboard with crazy LED light that make your car look like a space creature...and are very likely to blind oncoming traffic because this area is HIGHLY unregulated.
Hella will make H4 headlights for your swap, but you can also get the same size light from Autopal, an Indian company with less quality and FAR less cost. You will need the light assemblies, the bulbs (the ones that come with the kit are junky) and a wiring conversion harness to make the H4s work with your chassis wiring. You don't need the conversion harnesses, but they do make life easer if you aren't good with automotive wiring.
I use Autopals (since I remember the name from my visits to India) with higher quality H4 bulbs (Sylvania Nightbreaker Laser H4) and so far I am very happy with them. If I had more money I'd do Hella for their superior quality, but Autopal is good enough for me. You can find all these parts on eBay and Amazon. (do a lot of shopping for the best prices)
WHile I strongly agree with Sajeev on the H4 conversion, I disagree on the supplier. Over time I have bought many H4 conversions for my antique cars and for newer vehicles I've owned and I have never been let down by Hella.
If you have the time to deal with potential returns and other fitment issues then feel free to go for the less expensive options. I, for one, don't and I also tend to drive my antiques on other than sunny days where lighting faults are not acceptable (on camping trails at night, for example).
Horses for courses, but Hella's never let me down where others have.
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I would have to agree with all the other comments on this post. This sounds like the perfect time to update your headlights and find a style that supports the overall look that you want with your vehicle.
I know that when I was restoring my 1972 Chevrolet C10, exterior lighting (headlights & tail lights) upgrades were a no-brainer for me. I knew immediately that I was planning on driving my truck quite a bit, which included the occasional nightcap. I wanted to know that I would be seen by other drivers and was never concerned about originality when it came to safety. I ended up proceeding with LED lighting almost all the way around and could not be happier with my decision.
I know that not everyone feels that same way about this type of upgrade, so the decision is entirely up to you. If we can be of any further assistance, please feel free to reach back out to us at email@example.com.
Thank you for driving with Hagerty!