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Lot 207

1971 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible

  • Chassis no. 1512435410

Sold for $26,400

Nicknamed Betsy: A VW with personality

Model 1511. 60 bhp, 1,585 cc OHV horizontally-opposed four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, torsion bar independent front and rear suspension, and front disc, rear drum hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 94.5 in.

The Volkswagen Beetle holds the record for the longest continuous production of a single design, and the model has stolen the hearts of countless people worldwide. One of the best-remembered is “Herbie,” the Love Bug, star of six films and a television series. Through the ensuing episodes, Herbie, bearing racing number 53, experiences motor sports, romance, intrigue, and a dip in the ocean. Eventually, he takes part in demolition derbies and NASCAR races, and ends up falling in love with a Volkswagen New Beetle.

Herbie has delighted many a moviegoer and Volkswagen enthusiast, to the point where white VeeDubs bearing number 53 have become quite common. Others, like the prior owner of this car, have made theirs distinctive in more personal ways.

Named “Betsy,” this nifty Volkswagen convertible has special Pearl Yellow paint and fully-chromed VW wheels. The car has been the subject of a personalized restoration, with a new, powder-coated engine, fender skirts, and a custom air conditioning installation. The interior is upholstered in a unique, heavy-duty, tan tweed, matching the hue of the tan canvas top. A modern stereo system provides high fidelity listening. A southwest U.S. car, Betsy is as clean as a whistle underneath and took second place at Bug-O-Rama number 28 in Phoenix.

In the 1960s, one could buy a giant plastic wind-up key with a suction cup on the end. Owners would stick these to the back window of their Beetle sedans to simulate a toy car on the highway. Betsy takes it one step further: a polished aluminum key fits into a hidden socket in the engine lid. When desired, an electric motor slowly rotates the key, just as in a real wind-up toy. Betsy is built for fun. Her new owner will enjoy plenty of it.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

Cameron Smyth

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Cameron Smyth joined RM Sotheby’s as a Car Specialist in 2015, working out of our corporate office and providing assistance on c... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

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California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

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United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

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United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more