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Robert M Enderle Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:05 pm

Hello all. I recently purchased this beautiful Ghia.
It was listed for sale as a 1963. I sent for the VW birth Certificate from Volkswagen Classic Parts. I submitted the VIN and the engine number as well.
It has been confirmed that my Ghia was built 09.10.1961 and is listed as a 1962 and it is all "numbers-matching". All my paperwork/title etc. state it is a 1963 car. The certificate also states my car came with a 12 volt-system. All of this is very confusing to me. Anyone have any experience with these "Birth Certificates"? I have also e-mailed them to get clarification.
Thanks for any help.
Bob Enderle





smuenchrath Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:26 pm

Beautiful car!

It is not uncommon for the museum to get the birth certificate info wrong. For example, my birth certificate had the wrong color on it. They said it was blood orange, whereas I could tell my car was Regatta Blue. I wrote back to them and they sent me a new certificate with the right color.

What does your VIN number start with? This should confirm the year.

Robert M Enderle Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:34 pm

Hi and thanks for the compliment.
My VIN is 4180647. This appears on the tag in the spare tire well as well as the plate under the back seat.
I did write to them for clarification so we will see.
Thanks again.
Bob

John Moxon Tue Mar 17, 2020 1:07 am

Robert M Enderle wrote: Hi and thanks for the compliment.
My VIN is 4180647. This appears on the tag in the spare tire well as well as the plate under the back seat.
I did write to them for clarification so we will see.
Thanks again.
Bob

From the Vin number you quoted it does seem like you have a '62, (between Aug 1961 and Dec 1961) you can check here: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/archives/info/chassisdatingkg.php

The certificate would appear to be correct.

Robert M Enderle Tue Mar 17, 2020 4:45 am

Thanks again. I was also able to verify this.
My engine number is 6130364. They did verify that it is the engine the car came with but I cannot confirm this. Is there any other way to do so?
They did NOT put this number on the certificate, which I feel is inadequate to prove it is "numbers matching".
Thanks again for all the help.
Bob

John Moxon Tue Mar 17, 2020 6:29 am

Robert M Enderle wrote: Thanks again. I was also able to verify this.
My engine number is 6130364. They did verify that it is the engine the car came with but I cannot confirm this. Is there any other way to do so?
They did NOT put this number on the certificate, which I feel is inadequate to prove it is "numbers matching".
Thanks again for all the help.
Bob

If you supply the engine number to the museum they will simply say yes or no. They do not include the engine number on the certificate as any subsequent owner could replace the engine and stamp the replacement case with the original number. If you go to the Vin and Engine numbers for the Type 1: https://www.thesamba.com/vw/archives/info/bugchassisdating.php you'll find the number you supplied is indeed for the Ghia's month and year.

Congratulations Bob you have a 1962 Karmann Ghia with the original engine. :)

KGCoupe Tue Mar 17, 2020 8:19 am

Robert M Enderle wrote: Hello all. I recently purchased this beautiful Ghia.
It was listed for sale as a 1963. I sent for the VW birth Certificate from Volkswagen Classic Parts. I submitted the VIN and the engine number as well.
It has been confirmed that my Ghia was built 09.10.1961 and is listed as a 1962 and it is all "numbers-matching". All my paperwork/title etc. state it is a 1963 car. The certificate also states my car came with a 12 volt-system. All of this is very confusing to me. Anyone have any experience with these "Birth Certificates"? I have also e-mailed them to get clarification.
Thanks for any help.
Bob Enderle
...
Yes, indeed - Beautiful Karmann Ghia!
Judging from the list of available colors back in the 1962 model year, I'm guessing that is L 384 Pampas Green?

It is somewhat unfortunate that the engine number is not included with the Birth Certificate information, but as already stated this is done to help prevent fraud.
As long as the museum continues to offer verification of original engine numbers to those that supply them with their Birth Certificate request, then it's basically a non-issue that the engine number does not appear on the actual certificate itself.

I know that in the majority of the vintage automotive world, "matching numbers" is a very big deal that can have significant effect on the overall market value of the vehicle.
However, in the vintage VW portion of that world the whole "numbers matching" thing is much less significant and does not seem to affect the overall value nearly as much.

IMO, the fact that all of your "official" paperwork for the car (state title, bill of sale, etc.) are for a 1963 model year Karmann Ghia when in fact it is a 1962 model year is more of a concern and could lead to potential problems in the future.

Even those types of "official" documents are still open to human error, though.
At some point some clerk somewhere goofed and entered the wrong model year, apparently.
The fact that the VIN is recorded correctly should be good enough to override any future issues in that regard though, hopefully.


What I personally find most interesting about the Birth Certificate information is the fact that it states the car came with a 12 volt electrical system.

Was that information represented as simply one item in a list of "standard features" for all Karmann Ghias?
If so, then that would obviously be a case of human error as the 1967 model year was the first Karmann Ghia to offer a 12 volt electrical system.

... or was the information represented as a special option (M Code) specifically called for at the time the Ghia was originally ordered?
I was not aware that such a thing was possible, and I'd be curious to hear from any experts here whether or not a 12 volt electrical system was an available option prior to 1967.

Robert M Enderle Tue Mar 17, 2020 9:49 am

Thanks again for the kind words and all the great advice.
Yes the certificate does call the color out as L384 Pampas Green. Good call there!!
The second page of the Certificate has a list of "Special Configuration" items.
It lists: M355 US-equipment
Seat Belts in front (which are either missing or never had)
Mph Speedometer
Hazard warning system (nope)
Without Flasher
Laminated Windscreen
Ram protection (????)
Reversing light (either missing or incorrect)
12 volt-system
M128 White wall tires
M558 Upholstery leatherette

Your engine is the original one since date of delivery

This is as exactly stated on the second sheet.
Any help with this stuff is much appreciated.
Bob

John Moxon Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:21 am

Robert M Enderle wrote: Ram protection (????)

Quite simply in Beetle parlance... Towel Rail Bumpers.


Robert M Enderle Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:46 am

Thanks John!
Thats hilarious!!
Also, FYI I plan to make every effort I can to have it titled as a 1962 when I go to transfer the title at the BMV. I am hoping all the supporting documentation I have will allow this to happen.
Thanks again for all the great info!!
Bob

John Moxon Tue Mar 17, 2020 1:25 pm

Robert M Enderle wrote: Thanks John!
Thats hilarious!!
Also, FYI I plan to make every effort I can to have it titled as a 1962 when I go to transfer the title at the BMV. I am hoping all the supporting documentation I have will allow this to happen.
Thanks again for all the great info!!
Bob

Don't be a stranger Bob...that's a beautiful Ghia you have there. I'm sure we'd all like to follow it. :)

Robert M Enderle Tue Mar 17, 2020 3:07 pm

Ill do that John!
The car has an interesting history and back story (don't they all?).
I would really like to trace it back to its delivery into New Orleans and all its passed owners. Not sure how to do that.
The car has a little over 33,000 miles on the odometer and from my inspections so far I am inclined to believe it is actual!! It was (supposedly) repainted and upholstered in 2009 but I have no idea where/who/how etc..
I can tell it has never been separated from the pan and I am almost certain the engine has never been out of the car or disassembled. The brakes, hardware, drums, shoes etc.. all indicate a car with 33,000 miles of wear. They are NOT brand new or replacement parts.
It is a curiosity indeed.
I will post more as I discover things.
Later,
Bob

bnam Wed Mar 18, 2020 11:25 pm

Robert M Enderle wrote: Thanks again for the kind words and all the great advice.
Yes the certificate does call the color out as L384 Pampas Green. Good call there!!
The second page of the Certificate has a list of "Special Configuration" items.
It lists: M355 US-equipment
Seat Belts in front (which are either missing or never had)
Mph Speedometer
Hazard warning system (nope)
Without Flasher
Laminated Windscreen
Ram protection (????)
Reversing light (either missing or incorrect)
12 volt-system
M128 White wall tires
M558 Upholstery leatherette

Your engine is the original one since date of delivery

This is as exactly stated on the second sheet.
Any help with this stuff is much appreciated.
Bob

I suspect the 12V listed is a mistake. M355 in later years (from 67) included 12V but did not before that. The Museum person probably copied the later M355 listing. 12V was available even prior to 67 but it was a specific m-code option. I've seen a few of those here.

udo dreisoerner Thu Mar 19, 2020 12:43 am



congrat bob for These beautyful ghia. fantastic Colors. great car, great Interieur. wow.

a lot of birthcertificate are wrong. my certificate tells me that my 1956 lowlight coupe have had bumper-overriders. but this parts are later parts, not 1956.

so it is alot of Money for a piece of paper with exatcly and wrong informations.

dont worry, be happy to own this great eraly ghia.

regards from Germany, udo

djway3474 Fri Mar 20, 2020 11:36 pm

In many states back then they would list the model year as the year the car was sold and happened often and in many locations.
Non flashing warning light. Is there a small hole under the drivers side dash close to the door? If there is it had one at one point. The light would be a red light on the passenger rear bumper.
Reverse light was a small contact switch between the speedo cable and the speedo, the clear lens light would have been on the drivers side rear bumper. All this stuff is often long gone.

dash switch location

You can see both lights on the bumper. I can't find the reverse switch picture but google should work.

amjady Sat Apr 04, 2020 7:36 pm

about 20 years ago I wrote a letter (yes wrote) to VW requesting my birth certificate for my 71 ghia coupe.

They replied weeks later that the information was on microfiche and it was too old and delicate to view so they could not provide the birth certificate. Still have the letter....

jed

KGCoupe Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:03 pm

amjady wrote: about 20 years ago I wrote a letter (yes wrote) to VW requesting my birth certificate for my 71 ghia coupe.

They replied weeks later that the information was on microfiche and it was too old and delicate to view so they could not provide the birth certificate. Still have the letter....

jed
Technology changes a bit over 20 years.
Perhap they may have found a way to digitize the fragile microfiche, and can now provide you with the information ... assuming you still actually have same Karmann Ghia.

amjady Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:28 pm

Yeah, I would hope they would have advanced a bit since then. I think, with all this down time I have, I will reach out to them again and see.

So yes, I do still have the 71 coupe, and I pick up a 69 convertible a couple years ago. Ill try to get the certificates for both.

Rome Mon Apr 06, 2020 12:04 pm

Quote: Without Flasher This would be the "flash to pass" button inside the turn signal lever, which most non-US Ghias had. This was in addition to the "foot button" on the firewall to the left of the clutch pedal. The flash switch enabled a momentary switchover from low to high beam as a signal to oncoming drivers, even if the headlight switch was not on. In German the function is called Lichthupe (literally "light horn"). US-spec VWs of that era usually did not have this switch. I don't know if that was due to US regulations.

The switch for high/low beams in the blinker stalk was introduced on US-spec Type 1 for the '66 model year.

VW offered a small kit for installing the same type of small switch for high/low beam activation into the blinker lever; 111-998-111. Fits into '61 (possibly already '60) thru '65 model year. The blinker stalk is already drilled for the wiring and the small switch retention screw. With that switch in place, you could disable and remove the firewall switch.

Beautiful Ghia you have; I don't remember ever seeing one in that color either.

Robert M Enderle Sun May 31, 2020 4:26 pm

Thanks for all the help and great history/info.
I did get a replacement certificate from the museum with all the correct info.
I've got another issue. The brakes need some work.
I discovered a leaking left rear wheel cylinder. All the other shoes and hardware look to have been replaced. The drums, however look to be original to the car.
My plan is to upgrade to a dual circuit MC (brakes failed instantly when that rear cylinder blew!!) and replace the leaking wheel cylinder. My question I cannot seem to find the answer to is, what is the maximum allowable diameter I can safely turn the drums to? I'd really like to keep these stock original drums if I can. Any help/advice is appreciated.
Thanks,
Bob



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