Through the years, as I purchased and sold different air-cooled VW’s, I always wanted to own a Karmann Ghia. I thought that they were by far the classiest VW, with the smoothest lines. The pinnacle of this dream would be to own a convertible Ghia, which was finally realized in 2006. This dream, however, soon turned into a nightmare.
I had a real nice 1966 Ghia coupe that was in very nice, rust free condition that I decided to sell and use the proceeds to fund what was likely to be a project convertible. I understood this, but was willing to do what I needed to finally have my convertible Ghia.
After selling my 66, I began searching on the internet for the right project. I found what I thought to be, and what I was told was a completely rust free 72 convertible Ghia.
I impulsively believed the photos and the word of the seller and bought the car sight unseen from across the country and had it shipped to my home. I was so excited. Rather than a project, this had the potential of being a beautiful driver from day 1. After making arrangements and waiting a few weeks, it finally arrived.
Well, it was a nice 15 footer. But, upon closer inspection, the car had some…many flaws, and lots of rust. So much so, that I wasn’t even comfortable driving it. I want to be proud of the car I drive, and it had so many problems that it was embarrassing to me to drive it. The interior was trash, the floor was just many different pieces of sheet metal welded to the bottom, over the top of the rust. There was bondo, and the front firewall was just shot. I ended up just parking it in the garage and moved on to other projects, namely finishing my 69 Fasty. I new that in order to someday make good on my investment, I was going to need to put a lot of work and money into the 72. I decided that a good step in the right direction was a parts car with a solid floor pan. After searching, I found a 71 coupe with new floor pans, a good motor, nice Porsche Fuch wheels and a lot of spare parts.
I ended up driving the parts car for 2 years, because even in it’s rat rod style, It felt more solid.
Finally, in 2012, after the convertible sat in my garage for 6 years, I was getting ready to move and I knew that I had to either move on from my dream, or I had to get my butt in gear on my project. This began a stretch of 2 months were I spent nearly every waking moment working on this project.
And finally, my dream convertible Ghia began shaping up.
It was a labor of love, and of many years, but in the end, I had a car that was a dream to drive, and turned heads wherever it went.