1956 Volkswagen Karmann-Ghia
'Lowlight' Coupé

The Volkswagen Karmann-Ghia 'Lowlight Coupé'

'Sensational!' 'This is a Volkswagen?' That is surely how many felt, when they first saw the Karmann-Ghia in the mid-1950s. 'What a shape, how elegant!' 'And was it really based on the Beetle?' Yes, it was. With the Karmann Ghia, German reliability met Italian styling. A perfect match!

Karmann in Osnabrück began developing ‘Type 14’ in 1953. The Italian design studio Ghia was commissioned to create a coupé on the basis of the Beetle. The prototype presented at the end of 1953 mesmerised both Karmann and Volkswagen Management in Wolfsburg and it was decided to bring the model into production, which started in August 1955 for model year 1956.

The Karmann-Ghia combines the well-known and robust Beetle technology with an elegant Italian bodywork. To improve handling and reduce body roll and oversteer, the car is equipped with a front anti-roll bar. Interior space in the front of the Karmann-Ghia is improved by widening the body in comparison to the Beetle. Driver and passenger enjoy a sculpted dashboard with two stylish round instruments and a top speed of 116 km/h.

The Karmann-Ghia is a resounding success and in total 362,601 cars are built over a 19 year production run, including the cabriolet version introduced in 1958, and a large number of cars are exported to the United States. Of all Karmann-Ghia built, the early 'Lowlight' cars from 1956-1959 are the most coveted due to the purity of their design and owe their name to the lower placement of the headlights compared to later models.

This Volkswagen Karmann-Ghia 'Lowlight Coupé'

Our car was built on 28 September 1956 and left the factory in Osnabrück on 11 October 1956. It was exported to California, where it spent all of its life until imported to Europe in 2010. When acquired by the current owner, the car had led a pampered life in the dry Californian climate and the body was rust free and in very good condition. The seller was only the third owner of the car and it had a mileage of 87,000. In the nineties, the car was resprayed cream white and had a brown interior.

An excellent basis for a restoration in other words, and the new owner embarked on a complete rebuild of the car, including bodywork, interior, mechanics and electrics. It was decided to bring the car back to its factory colour, L 259 Pelican Red. For the interior, one-coloured gray was selected in the style of the cars built in 1955. The roof is finished in correct black and the result is nothing short of stunning. This car runs and drives like new and will bring its new owner countless of hours of pleasure on excursions along winding country roads, where this car is best enjoyed.

Please contact us for inspection and test-driving of the car, which can be arranged anytime by appointment.

  • Exceptional early 'Lowlight' Coupé built in 1956
  • Frame-off restoration of a low-mileage rust-free car with good provenance
  • Striking in Pelican Red over gray with black roof

Price: € 54,900