The Volkswagen Beetle 1100 'Split-Window'
The history of the Volkswagen brand began with the 'Käfer' (German word for Beetle). Development work on this Nazi prestige project started in 1934. On May 28, 1937, the “Gesellschaft zur Vorbereitung des Deutschen Volkswagens mbH“ (Company for the Preparation of the German Volkswagen Ltd.) was formally established. The name was changed to 'Volkswagenwerk GmbH' in 1938, and the company built its main plant in what has become Wolfsburg. However, the outbreak of war and integration in the arms industry prevented mass production of the Volkswagen ('people’s car') – instead, military vehicles and other armaments were produced using forced labor.
On 27th December 1945 production of the Type 1 commences. Volkswagen starts assembly of 55 cars until the end of the year with 6.000 employees. The Volkswagen Type 1 is initially only available for authorities and the British militray. Private byuers will only be able to get their hands on new cars in any significant numbers after the curency reform of June 1948.
However, already in 1947 the decision is made to export the Beetle. This leads to a split of production into 'Standard' and 'Export' models, that would last for three decades. The 'Export' models (Type 11A) could be recognised by additional chrome parts (for instance bumpers and wheel adornments) and a more comprehensive standard equipment, including adjustable seats. Since it was deemed too expensive to develop and produce a curved rear window, the engineers decided to use a split window. This will later make these early cars known as 'Brezel-Käfer' (Pretzel Beetle in German). Characteristic of the early years is the matte paint. The paint quality did not allow for a gloss finish. The Beetle is powered by a 25 hp 1131 cm³ air-cooled 4-cylinder boxer engine and is rear-wheel drive, which gives the car excellent traction.
This Volkswagen Beetle 1100 De Luxe Sedan
A fantastic example of an early 'Export' Beetle. Built on 15 January 1952, it was dispatched from the Wolfsburg plant two days later, destined for Sweden. According to its build sheet, it was painted 'L 73 Chestnut Brown'. Options include a fantastic built in radio with a large central clock, keeping driver and passengers informed and entertained. Both work perfectly to this day. Another extra is a space-age designed ashtray for the rear passengers. Compared to the rather austere 'Standard' Beetle, the De Luxe offers plush fabric seats with adjustment and a totally different experience altogether. Another lovely extra is the extensive 'Hazet' tool kit, integrated into the spare wheel.
According to the Swedish vehicle documets, the car had three owners, before being sourced for the current owner by one of his aquaintances. The pictures show a car, that was in good, original condition at that time. Nevertheless, its new owner embarked on a full rebuild with focus on originality. Body, mechanics, electrics and interior were refurbished. The car retains its matching numbers engine and its factory colour combination. Some of the original patina is visible in the steering wheel, instrument surrounds and other parts. This was a deliberate decision on behalf of the owner and makes this example more genuine.
The car is immaculate and we know from our own experience of restoring classic Mercedes how much time, effort and craftsmanship go into a full rebuild like this. The result is nothing short of stunning and the car is truly amazing and ready to be loved and enjoyed by a serious Volkswagen enthusiast, looking for the very best car available. Please contact us for more details.
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