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1969 VW Karmann Ghia Convertible

Sold Price


  • Mileage~96,000
  • TransmissionAutomatic-Stickshift
  • Engine1.5L
  • LocationPailton


1969 VW Karmann Ghia Convertible

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Glyn Parry
Professional Consigner

The car with the incredibly cool image with all the air-cooled Beetle advantages - this Karmann Ghia convertible is a restored favourite in the world of classics.

Karmann had the idea of producing a new Beetle-based coupe, and VW figured with its simple and adaptable floorplan it would be fairly straightforward to build special bodies for it. Throughout the '50s VW was going from strength to strength and it was the next logical move to expand their automotive range. Italian design company 'Ghia' styled the car with sleek body panels to fit the Beetle platforms before returning to Karmann factory for finishing.

The public certainly agreed and the Karmann Ghia went on to sell very well. In '58 Karmann and VW produced a convertible example, which America loved and to all those who like to make a fashion statement.

This example has spent the majority of its life in the states and was imported to the UK in 2005. Les, the owner, has owned the car for the previous 8 years after he bought it restored finished in Bamboo Yellow, reporting it was professionally painted and put back together by Karmann Ghia Centre UK.

Due to lack of use and space, Les has decided to bring the car to auction to make room for more motorbikes.

This auction listing was written from information supplied by Glyn after meeting Les the owner, and having visited and photographed the vehicle.

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Secure Auctions

We verify all our sellers and buyers to keep our community safe whilst also providing the highest levels of website security.

Full Transparency

8 out of 10 people that buy cars via our service don’t feel the need to visit due to the transparency and thoroughness of our listings.

Vehicle Delivery

We're there every step of your buying journey and will even arrange pick-up and delivery of your new vehicle.

Meet the owner

I first spotted this Karmann Ghia at a VW meet, and remember thinking what fantastic bodywork it has.

Les originally learnt to drive in a VW Beetle and owned quite a few during his youth, he always loved the idea of owning a Karmann Ghia yet couldn't afford one at the time. After thorough research Les found the '69 convertible an ideal option with its 1500cc engine while still retaining the rail bumpers and bullet indicators. He first saw this example at a VW meet a year earlier before seeing it advertised online.

Les reports enjoying the glamorous shape of the car while tinkering on it during the weekends, over his ownership he's replaced the shock absorbers, rear suspension bushes, steering box, pushrod tubes, and rocker cover.

After not using it that frequently, Les thinks it's time to share the pleasure of Karmann Ghia and therefore is bringing it to auction. Les would love to find an owner who will be able to use and enjoy the car as much as he has. Les will be happy to answer any of your questions in the comments below.

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Dashing good looks as a fresh-air fashion statement.

Wheels and Tyres

During the restoration, the 15" wheels were refurbished to a very good standard, Les has replaced the original hub caps with new Moon Stainless steel reflective caps. Les still retains the originals if the new custodian would prefer these.

The car is fitted on Big O Radial Max steel-belted tyres which are dated 2001. Although old, the tyres appear in good visual condition with no cracking noticed on our visit.


The bodywork appears in great condition and has been given professional attention throughout the restoration. The dry climate of California has also helped preserve the bodywork over the years.

The panels gaps and shut lines looking good, especially for a VW of this age. We did notice the very slightest sign of bubbling beginning to appear under the front of the offside sideskirt, however you'll have to get very close to notice this.

We have taken hi-resolution images and videos of the car for you to assess the condition of the bodywork for yourselves.


Originally the car was finished in a Cherry Red, which became rather faded during it's sunny life in the states. This Karmann Ghia is now finished in "Bamboo Yellow", which appears in excellent condition around the car, and really shows the amount of care that has gone into the restoration and ownership by Les. Each panel presents a deep lustre along with even coverage and colour throughout.

The images taken are from different angles and reflections to show off the car as you would see it if you were standing there for yourselves. Please take the time to fully assess the condition.

Glass and Trim

The glass on this example looks great and in line with the mileage, we didn't notice any discolouration during our visit. The window seals look good too and are in line with the rest of the condition of the car. The brightwork is beginning to show the slight signs of pitting, with a good polish you could really elevate the condition.

A deep brown convertible hood is fitted, which appears in great condition and operates quickly and smoothly without fault.


A classic VW air-cooled interior having benefited from a complete refurb and a hot climate life.

Seats and Carpets

The interior of the car looks just as you would expect from a restored example, New cream leather seats, carpets and door cards were fitted which appear in excellent condition throughout.

The headlining tells a similar story. Take a look at the photos for a closer look at the interior.


The dashboard was repainted to match the exterior's "Bamboo Yellow" paintwork and shows very little wear in line with the rest of the interior. The Automatic-stickshift control instructions have been neatly installed onto the central console.

Please take a look at the photos and videos for a closer look.

Steering Wheel / Gear Stick

The car retains some character through the use of the original gearstick and steering wheel, both items are showing their age a little, yet retain the original Karmann Ghia look we love.


The later 1.5-litre air-cooled engine with the earlier classic chrome styling - the 1969 Karmann Ghia model was the sweet spot.

Engine and Gearbox

Les opted for the '69 convertible model which received a 1.5-litre air-cooled engine while still retaining the classic chrome bumpers and indicators.

We captured a cold start video that shows the car starting without fuss on the first request. Please take a look at the detailed media pack to see a closer view of the very clean engine bay and underneath the car.

Suspension and Brakes

Les reports suspension and brakes work very well, he replaced the shock absorbers and rear suspension bushes over his ownership.

The Drive

All the looks with the revised powertrain create a very enjoyable drive in the Karmann Ghia Convertible.

Les reports taking the car on a road trip up to the lake district one summer, where the car received an awful lot of positive attention and was "a joy to drive."

Electrics and Other

We're assured that everything on the car works as expected, including the original radio that's neatly installed on the dashboard with Kenwood speakers mounted under the dash.

History and Paperwork

A very glamourous restored Bamboo VW Karmann Ghia Convertible coming out of long term ownership - ready to be used and enjoyed this summer.

The car has spent the majority of its life in the U.S, where it was originally intended for, before being imported and restored in the UK by the Karmann Ghia Centre.

The car comes with a good amount of paperwork in the form of receipts, tax discs, and California registrations. In addition, there are some photos of the car before the restoration and a VW production certificate, verifying the car was originally delivered to New York in '69 with a 1,493cc engine, finished in Cherry Red, black soft top, and black leatherette interior. Extras from factory included: M002/355 US-Equipment, M128 Whitewall tires, M261 Additional outside mirror, plain.

Les will be happy to answer any questions you may have in the comments below.

We’ve done all our usual seller checks including photo ID, V5 and also actioned a HPi check on the vehicle.

We've summarised our own view on the car based on information gained from the seller in the listing above, however, and as you can see, we go to great lengths to photograph and video the car in hi-resolution detail - this has been done for you to make your own assessment from the comfort of your sofa. So please sit back, have a cuppa and take your time to review everything on this listing in order to make your own assessment on the vehicle's condition. Viewings are also welcomed with all our listings, so please get in touch with us to arrange a suitable time - we just need to speak to you first and receive a valid photo ID before confirming.

If there's anything you're unsure about, no matter how small, then please first ask the owner in the comments area below before placing your bid/s, as bids can't be retracted and form a binding contract if you win the car - just like a traditional auction house.

Service History
Date Type Mileage
16.02.2018 MOT 95,821
13.09.2016 MOT 95,613
07.08.2015 MOT 94,611
30.07.2014 MOT 93,814
22.07.2013 MOT 93,731
31.07.2012 MOT 93,763
21.07.2011 MOT 93,720
26.06.2010 MOT 93,730
23.08.2006 MOT 93,730
02.09.2005 MOT 93,730
Key Details
  • ModelKarmann Ghia Convertible
  • TransmissionAutomatic Stick-shift
  • Reg. Date01.03.1969
  • UK Reg. Date02.09.2005
  • CC1500CC
  • Mileage~96,000
  • HistoryGood
  • ColourBamboo Yellow
  • Interior ColourCream
  • Interior TrimLeather
  • Chassis #149488438
  • Engine #H5694095
  • RestoredYes
  • MOTNo Exempt.
  • MOT ExemptYes
  • Road Tax ExemptYes
  • HPi ClearYes
  • Tyre BrandBig O
  • Tyre Age2001
  • VisitedYes
  • Sale TypePrivate
  • Owned8 years
  • Key FeatureCondition

Vehicle Sold

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Post a comment or ask the owner a question about the car.

Is the engine and gearbox in good working order ?


When this car last was refurbished is the engine and gear box in good order ?


Vehicle Location

Pailton, Warwickshire

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