‘40s shades of grey!

Drive your Classic to Work Week’s obviously been a success because out on the road recently, parked outside Costa Coffee in Worthing of all places, we spotted this ultra rare 1948 split rear window Beetle, belonging to Sean Geddes.

split beetle

Whether he was on his way to work or simply grabbing a quick cuppa, we’re not sure, but his Beetle is surely one of the most outstanding early examples still existence.

Grabbing a quick chat before he tootled off (the engine sounded beautifully sewing machine like as he started it), Sean told us that he’d bought the car in Czechoslovakia and although it was fitted with a newer engine, the original 1100cc 25bhp unit was sitting in a corner of the owner’s workshop. It’s since been swapped over.

Understandably, given its age, the car was in a terrible state and Sean’s done a miraculous job bringing it back to this condition. And we’re chuffed that it’s obviously being used which is incredible for a car that’s over 60 years old!

Apparently Sean lives local to the West Sussex area which is interesting as we know of a similar car, this time a 1947, belonging to Richard Oakley who lives close to the VW Heritage HQ in Burgess Hill. Talk about a county rich in VW history!

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We spoke to John Maxwell, owner of a 1949 Beetle, from the Historic VW Club who confirmed that ‘40s cars are super rare, estimating that only around a dozen or so still exist in the UK. Said John: “I know of a ’46 car that’s in the early stages of restoration and two ‘47s that are undergoing major work. Generally speaking, cars from this era are priceless.”


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