My Cars

Cars have been an important part of my life for many years, even before I could legally drive. I passed my test in a Triumph Herald and went on to buy one when I started work. That was DHG 948D and it served me well enough until I saw a red Beetle lurking in the middle of the forecourt of a second hand car dealer in Preston, Lancashire, in December 1971. After a short test-drive, the car was mine in exchange for £220 and we have had many adventures together since. Click on a picture for more about each car.

Presently Owned

KEO 201 After passing my test, I learnt to drive in my father’s 1960 Beetle, caught the bug and always hankered after one of my own. This car was first registered in Barrow-in-Furness on 10th May 1963, she is a 1963 model, factory fitted with a Golde sunroof.
SBW 360N The Type 4 was the largest air-cooled car that Volkswagen built and was commercially unsuccessful. However, it was a superb motor car in many respects. This is the 412LS Variant I bought in 1987 with two extra doors spliced into the sides to create a 5-door Variant. I believe that it is the only one ever built. Updated September 2021.
Californian 412 This is the VW412 Variant Automatic I bought in June 2014. It was an import from California and it passed its first UK MoT on 1st August 2014. It took a week to assemble the necessary paperwork and the DVLA issued the registration certificate and first tax disk a week later. I purchased the number plates on 29th August. I enjoyed driving it although being left-hand drive made overtaking on our Lincolnshire roads a bit of a challenge.

Previously Owned

LHB 398L I bought this 1972 Karmann Ghia Coupé in February 2017 complete with a lovely new interior and a dealer-fitted sunroof. Unfortunately it failed its MOT the following year and I discovered that shortcuts had been taken with earlier restorations. I was able to deal with what had to be done and I thoroughly enjoyed driving the car for 6 years. Then the sea air and previous dodgy repairs caught up and I decided it needed to come off the road for a full restoration. I didn’t need another project so I sold it to someone who, I believe, will do the car justice and who will cherish it.
OBT 467M I didn’t really plan to buy this car. It was whilst I was working on my Variant conversion project that I heard about someone who had a 412LE fastback with only 22,800 miles on the clock and wanted it to go to a good home. So I arranged to go and see the car after work one evening and agreed to buy it. I took possession on 4th February 2000. Updated September 2021.
Vicky in the Boot This is my first VW Type 4, bought in 1982 from Camerons of Scone, an independent VW dealer, whilst working at Perth, Scotland. It was a 4-door LS Fastback and I loved driving it. Unfortunately it succumbed to the liberal quantities of salt used on the roads every winter in Scotland and ended its days languishing in the corner of a field in Kent. However, it did donate the door frames I needed to create my 5-door Variant, which is finished in this colour. My daughter has changed a little too!

I’ve also owned a few other cars which all served their purpose at the time. Their memory is consigned to history!

Other Stuff

My garage was built many years ago when cars were a lot smaller and it was only just long enough to accommodate my project 412. When the tiled roof had deteriorated enough to need restoring, I decided to go for the bigger picture and to move the front and rear walls out to give me additional length. This would allow me to move round the car without difficulty and, by improving the insulation during the rebuild, I would be able to install dehumidification equipment to help stop my cars deteriorating so quickly. That would, I hope, save work and money in the long run. This is that story.

Events Pictures from events I have attendedupdated 29th May 2020
Links A page of links to other VW interest sites
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This page revised January 2024 © J S Rastall