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Thread: Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type III

  1. #1
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    Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type III

    Type 3 Karmann Ghia - by Tim Dapper from Melvin R. Bacani site: Karman Ghia World

    Karmann had a very successful design with the "Type 1" Karmann-Ghia built on a variation of the Beetle chassis. When Volkswagen finalized their new car, the Type 3 ( the busses being Type 2) Karmann again teamed with Ghia to design a body for the Type 3 chassis. The result was the Karmann-Ghia 1500, which shared the chassis and engine/transmission layout with "Variant", "Notchback, and "Fastback" models of the Volkswagen 1500.
    Production of the Karmann-Ghia 1500 started late in 1961. All of those early cars were sold as 1962 model year vehicles. The last Type 3 Ghia was built in June 1969, after a total of 42,432 had been built. Karmann had also designed a convertible model of the car, and had tooled for production. VW went so for as to print advertising materials and introduce the convertible at auto shows. Alas, there were body flex problems that could not be overcome and the car did not go into production. It is thought that as many as half a dozen may have been built, but at this time only three are known - one on display at Karmann, another in the hands of the Karmann family, and a third retained by Volkswagen, but not yet displayed.

    The coupes were all nearly identical, and from a distance it is difficult to tell the model years apart. Most changes were subtle, but went something like this:

    1962
    The original car had a rectangular nose badge, and small Karmann badges on the lower front of the rear quarter panels.
    1963
    The quarter panel badges were removed, and the rectangular nose badge was replaced with a round VW badge.
    1964
    The rotating knob heater control (a'la Beetle) was replaced with a twin lever set up between the emergency brake lever and the gear shift, and the dual carburator set up was introduced. Part way through the 1964 model year, the push button headlight switch was replaced with a more traditional push-pull switch.
    1965
    The speedometer was increased in size.
    1966
    This model brought the introduction of front disk brakes, four lug wheels, and the 1600 engine.
    1967
    The door locking mechanism was moved from a lever built into the inside latch handle to a more traditinal push-pull knob mounted on top of the window sill near the center door pillar of each door, and the heater controls were changed to levers mounted on the emergency brake lever housing.
    1968
    Changes are too subtle to see.
    1969
    The tail light assembly was changed so that the lens protruded and could be seen from the side of the car.
    At the time of the introduction of the Type 3 Ghia, world economics dictated that the car would not be sold in the United States. The Mark was very strong against the Dollar, forcing the Karmann Ghia to compete in the price market with Austin Healy, MG, and other sports cars -- a challenge that the air cooled VW engine could not meet.


    I have nothing personal to say about this car since it was the first I've ever seen live. The only thing I must say it's that it is far more interesting and stylish than the Type 1, although looking like it's older than the other.
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  2. #2
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    i wanted one of these for my first car, 3 more years ARGH!!! these cars are gorgeous, someone near me's got one in red, but not this particular model

  3. #3
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    I almost bought one of these once, but went for a '58 type1 Low lamp instead. I'm still not sure I made the right choice.

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    There's a disused one sitting in the garage next door a real shame, such a beautiful car... I would ask the guy if I could buy it, but he looks like Jerry Adams and he also got irate with me when I told his dogs to shut the **** up after they'd been barking non-stop all summer... so yeah... bummer....

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by IWantAnAudiRS6
    There's a disused one sitting in the garage next door a real shame, such a beautiful car... I would ask the guy if I could buy it, but he looks like Jerry Adams and he also got irate with me when I told his dogs to shut the **** up after they'd been barking non-stop all summer... so yeah... bummer....
    Go make an offer. Money makes people nicer.

    I have always loved this car, which is odd because I am not usually a VW fan. I'd like to find one that is pretty well ruined to fool around with.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Tiv
    I have always loved this car, which is odd because I am not usually a VW fan. I'd like to find one that is pretty well ruined to fool around with.
    It's just the original Audi TT...
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer
    It's just the original Audi TT...
    never has a car suffered a greater insult...
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer
    It's just the original Audi TT...
    No. I have to disagree here. This car speaks to me, despite the fact that it's pretty uninspired.
    Go n-ithe an cat thu, is go n-ithe an diabhal an cat

    When you go Home, Tell them for us and say 'For your tommorrow, We Gave Our Today.'

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by henk4
    never has a car suffered a greater insult...
    Not if you look at it objectively. It's common underpinnings clothed by a good looking body. Just like the TT.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer
    Not if you look at it objectively. It's common underpinnings clothed by a good looking body. Just like the TT.
    that presupposes that you consider the TT a good body and not like an iron-down new beetle...
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

  11. #11
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    never been a fan of those. after the original that was a step back imo. i have a (printed) pic whith a prototype standing next to the final version, and it looked better with the headlights placed next to each other
    12 cylinders or walk!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by henk4
    that presupposes that you consider the TT a good body and not like an iron-down new beetle...
    Well, you know what I mean.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer
    Well, you know what I mean.
    No, i really don't. I think you like the TT but comparing that with a Karmann Ghia is a bit cross. And they did tweak the original TT chassis, to the extent that the original car was lethal for the unexperienced in fast corners (not like your standard Audi)
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by henk4
    No, i really don't. I think you like the TT but comparing that with a Karmann Ghia is a bit cross. And they did tweak the original TT chassis, to the extent that the original car was lethal for the unexperienced in fast corners (not like your standard Audi)
    I don't particularly like the TT, I quite like the high-tech approach of the Mk II, but that's it. What I meant is that both these cars have their underpinnings based on economic family cars with sporty bodies on top of them. Now is clear, isn't it?
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer
    I don't particularly like the TT, I quite like the high-tech approach of the Mk II, but that's it. What I meant is that both these cars have their underpinnings based on economic family cars with sporty bodies on top of them. Now is clear, isn't it?
    we can quote very many examples of that principle, but I find mentioning the TT as your first choice for this a lack of good taste, it is such an ugly piece of shit...
    "I find the whole business of religion profoundly interesting, but it does mystify me that otherwise intelligent people take it seriously." Douglas Adams

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