Here’s another alternative air-cooled Volkswagen from Brazil. We saw the Brasilia recently – Volkswagen do Brasil’s answer to the Golf platform and intended to extend the life of the Beetle platform. Here was their attempt to modernize the Karmann Ghia – the infamous SP2.
‘SP’ referenced São Paulo where the SP and SP2 were produced. The early model had a 1.6 liter flat-4, while the SP2 moved up to a 75 horsepower 1.7 air-cooled flat-4 mounted in the rear. The proportions of the body styling seemed to suggest the opposite though, with the long, low hood and hatchback GT profile looking more like a traditional sports car than any VW had before. Other period designs were borrowed – the Volkswagen 411, the Porsche 924 and Audi’s 100 Coupe S all had similar angles. But it was probably Volkswagen do Brasil’s own Karmann Ghia TC (Typ 145) that looked the most similar.
Only about 11,300 of these ultra-rare, Brazil-only SP2s were produced. They’re about as legendary as air-cooled VWs get in the U.S., so when one pops up for sale it’s worth a look:
Recently, a Facebook fanpage called Flussig Magazine – centering on watercooled Porsches – did an interesting comparison of side drawings comparing the 944, Ferrari 365 GTB/4, and Volkswagen SP2. While that may sound like a very interesting assortment of unrelated cars, the reality is if you put them side by side, there are pretty similar profiles to the designs. That’s a big compliment to the much more affordable Volkswagen and Porsche models, though the SP2 is a rare to see treat. There are very few kicking around the U.S., and while you can import one here it’s not the most common model to bring here. Is it worth it, then, if there’s one already here that needs some work?
The 1975 Volkswagen SP2 we featured back in February has been relisted and curiously carries a slightly higher price tag this time around. Did the frenzy over the Ventura that Carter featured earlier this month catch the seller by surprise?
The below post originally appeared on our site February 13, 2014:
When it comes to Volkswagen customs, there are plenty of options to choose from. You can get everything from a Baja Bug to a Bugatti, Ferraris to Mercedes-Benz 540Ks, and GT40, 917K and even the Monkeymobile. But most of them look somewhat out of proportion, like a real example of the car stuck in funhouse mirrors. But sometimes, when they weren’t intent on making a copy of another car, these customs can actually look okay – and the Ventura Coupe is a good example of that. Sure, there are styling cues from Bitters, Toyotas and some Italian metal, but the Ventura has its own unique style and doesn’t scream “kit car” from its first impression. Looking lovely in red, this Brazilian-built Volkswagen is a rare sight on these shores: