Sunday, October 23, 2016

Bastard Vee-dub: 1986 VW Karmann Ghia

Ever tune into one of those cringe worthy tv shows about botched plastic surgeries?  Our subject below may give off the same vibe to some of you.  They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder or DT reader.  Is this car a Mona Lisa or more like The Kramer?  Find this 1986 VW Karmann Ghia for sale in Lorain, OH for $4,000 via craigslist.

We have a Karmann Ghia body mounted on the chassis of a 1986 VW Cabriolet.  The Cabrio is a front engine and front wheel drive car based off a VW Golf.  The Karman Ghia was a rear wheel drive and rear engine car based off the VW Beetle.  The two hardly seem like good bed fellows, but that didn't deter our seller from taking it on.

The seller does not mention his motivation on the conversion, but does say it is a mish mash of various years Karmann Ghia parts and has many of them listed: 1958 bug headlights, 1965 Karmann Ghia taillights, louvred hood, new tires, new rubber front and rear glass, new radio, and a new exhaust. These details are still on the to do list include: door panels, blinkers need to be hooked up, some welding in the wheel wells, paint situation, and shocks/springs need replacing to fix bouncy ride due to cut springs.

The car has a Cabrio interior and gauges mounted in a Karmann Ghia dash. A fancy skull patterned material was used to cover the dash top and rear parcel shelf.  This pattern probably wasn't in stock at the local Jo-Ann Fabric store.  There is no mention if the rear engine compartment is functional as a trunk or what exactly is in that space. 

See another car with 1960's body on a 1980's chassis? email

Cory is nearly finished with his 1995 Mercedes E36 wagon and already starting in on a 1991 E36 coupe.


  1. But the '86 Cabriolet didn't have a frame.

  2. Sure be interested to know how this went together. Interesting idea.

  3. #FrankenGhia


    Or, just plain "Ew".

    I'm with Sean Kelly-- wasn't the '86 cab a unibody? Remove the body and... there is no frame that I know of.


  4. The dumb skull pattern tells the whole story of this car. Unfinished, badly conceived and few redeeming qualities. A Craigslist classic waiting to be unloaded.


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