Brazillian History

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VW 1600 Line - 1968 - 1981

VW 1600 - Notchback 1968 - 1971

VW 1600 Variant - Squareback 1969 - 1978

VW 1600 TL - Fastback 1970 - 1974

VW 1600 Variant II - 1978 - 1981

These cars were based in the Type 3 cars built in Germany, but weren't the same cars. I think these were Brazilian designs. We had a 4-door "notchback" (the VW 1600), and then a station-wagon (Variant). Later (in 1969, in think) VW launched the VW TL, the fastback model. In 1970 VW dropped the notchback, and created the 4-door TL (as you show in one of the photos). In 1974, VW dropped the TL line when it launched the Passat. The Variant continued to be produced until 1978. Then, VW created the Variant II, based in another original Brazilian design called the Brasilia. The main difference between the Variant II and the Brasilia was in the engine's position, since Brasilia's was placed as in the Beetle and Karmann-Ghia (Type 1, I think), and Variant II remained with the pancake one.

Wikipedia Type 3 Entry on Brazilian Type 3's

Karmann Ghia TC 1972-1975

Borrowed from The Karmann Ghia TC on Angelfire

Some may think only two types of Karmann Ghia exist, the Type 14 and the Type 34, they are mistaken... Brasil produced a Karmann Ghia from 1972 to 1975. A very interesting fastback that was unfortunately unknown in Europe.

The American market considered that the athletic character of the small cut typical Type 14 was not enough asserted to the eyes of several consumers. So Karmann Ghia had VW of Brazil build an initiative, more athletic model, on the basis of the Type 3 and more or less inspired Porsche 911, the Karmann-Ghia TC (Touring Coupe).

The production of the Karmann Ghia TC debuted Brazil in 1972 and was produced until 1975. By comparison, the traditional KG Type14 was produced in Sao Paulo making 23,402 models in 9 years. This is the success that has won the TC models, totally unknown under our European skies. The Karmann Ghia TC is thought of as a Type 3 Fastback Karmann Ghia. Only the ventilations on the nose panel, the logo on the rear deck lid, and the rounded characteristics of the fenders recall the original shape of the Type 14.

To the back you can see the original four series of cooling vents that are placed to the very rear of the wide decklid. The turn signals are very wide and comply to the requirements of 1970. At last, the oversized Karmann Ghia logo is placed horizontally on the left side of the cover motor. The smaller TC logo is positioned on the opposite side.

The motor is a 1600 cc originating from the pancake style of the Type 3. Added performance was obtained by the adoption of a horizontal cooling system and by the addition of two Solex 32 PSI carburetors, which was what placed the TC to the same level motorization as the Type34 of the European market.

The Karmann Ghia TC was never officially distributed to the USA. The only inventoried copy in Europe is preserved in the private Museum of Karmann in Osnabrück.

VW SP1 & SP2 - June 1972 - December 1975

Borrowed from Fabio Cereda of Brazil and

The VW SP-1 and SP-2 (named SP after "Sport Prototype") were launched in June 1972. The SP-1 had a 1600 cc engine, and the SP-2 a 1700 cc one. But performance was so poor that the SP-1 was never sold. I think that the SP was a really beautiful car. The following is quoted from Quatro Rodas magazine, July 1972 issue:

"It's a car whose design is so elegant and beautiful that has even caused agglomeration in some dealers. One of them had to call the police in order to push people that surrounded the car, since it was past 10 p.m. and the dealer couldn't close its doors."

This car was almost totally different from everything that VW Brasil had ever done, and the car had equipments that would be present in other models only in the '80s. The interior was clothed with leather (only the Dodge Charger R/T, Brazil's most expensive car at the time, had leather in its interior). The seats had support for the head (an equipment that even Passats would have only in 1978). VW made wide use of plastic in this car, to increase safety. And, of course, it had disc brakes, in a time when the rest of its line used drum brakes.

Price: SP-2 cost Cr$ 29,700.00, while the Karmann Ghia cost Cr$ 22,042 and the 1300 Beetle cost Cr$ 14,989. (July 1972)