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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

A well-bought Beetle reminds us that fun doesn't have to cost six figures

Champagne taste and beer money" is a phrase that comes to mind as your humble author comes away from his first round of Amelia coverage. Between eight-figure cars in Florida and Bring a Trailer recently punching its way into in-person auction sale prices, getting swept up in top-line numbers when covering the collector car market is all too easy.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/market-trends/hagerty-insider/a-well-bought-beetle-reminds-us-that-fun...
2 REPLIES 2
Snailish
Engineer

The Beetle is the second model T in many ways besides the obvious massive production.

As a collector car will it go the same way once people that drove them "in the wild" are mostly gone in that the stock examples are in museums/collections? You seldom see a model T driven for pleasure and lots of them are still around in functional condition.

Lots feel that 60s cars aren't modern enough to be a regular driver (hence the restomod trend) and Beetles are archaic compared to those in many ways (being a much older design).


Beetles (like the T, arguably moreso nowadays) have a big following in the modified world which negates the above for sure, though like a model T they are not naturally spacious and comfortable to wider-ranging tastes.

So that's a long way of saying the majority of times you catch someone actually driving a stock Beetle in the future will they be dressed up like hippies following the guy in the top hat driving a model T to a show?
Armchair67
New Driver

I disagree about the Beetle vs Model T comparison. The Model T was never really seen as a “cool” car in stock form. The Beetle is still seen as cool by young people. It still appears in online, TV, and print ads. They are seen on backdrops in trendy store windows. And a 60s or 70s Beetle is still practical to drive. They can keep up with modern traffic and get good gas mileage. They are reliable and parts are easy to get. Mechanical items are available not only at specialists but even at Auto Zone and Rock Auto.

The basic design was so good…the driving position is pretty much perfect and everything has a quality feel to it. The steering is light and direct and the brakes are decent even by todays standard (60-0 in about 115 feet) And the aftermarket is huge for these so making one so if you want to add more power, heat, a/c, etc, it’s easy enough to do.

I daily drove one through 2015 in all weather and it was an excellent little car. I stopped using it daily out of respect for them (salty winter roads) but it did everything I needed a car to do was a more practical car than my CTS-V in regards to gas mileage and being capable of plowing through snow.