A Tribute to a Friend: Shane’s 1967 VW Karmann Ghia
What I find most interesting about car enthusiasts are the countless stories and memories they have about building their prized possessions. Regardless if the car is new or old, there is bound to be a story of hardship, joy, or both. When I rolled up next to Shane in his 67 Karmann Ghia asking to do a shoot, little did I know that behind the beautiful paint job and the tastefully modded car was a story worth sharing with the world.
Some friendships are meant to last more than a lifetime. Originally, Shane had wanted to purchase the car from his best friend, however he was not willing to let it go. His friend neglected to take care of the Ghia and it just rotted away as the years passed by. Shane kept offering to purchase the car in order to save it, but his friend kept rejecting him. Circa 2001, his best friend died of cancer and in his will he left the 1967 Volkswagen Karmann Ghia to Shane.
12 years have passed and the car you see in this article is the product of Shane’s blood, sweat, tears, and a lot of money. For some reason the car had wrinkly body panels even though it had never been hit or in an accident. With the help of ABC Autobody in Belmont California, they were able to restore the Ghia’s beauty and youthfulness with extensive body work and a fresh coat of 70’s Ford Dove Grey paint.
The Ghia’s suspension had to be updated in order to obtain the look Shane was trying to achieve. For starters, the car is lowered on KYB shocks all around. 2″ narrowed beams were installed in order for the front tires to gain clearance. The rear is lowered 2 notches with the spring plates being turned on the torsion bar. In addition, the rear brakes have been converted to disc in order to keep things up to date. His choice of wheels were 2 liter Porsche alloys.
Shane wanted an interior that resembled one that rolled off the assembly line back in 1967. Using an OEM upholstery kit from TMI, he was able to restore the interior, giving it life.
Underneath the hood, you can find a stock 1600cc single port motor and stock gearbox. A rebuild was performed, but no modifications were added for reliability purposes.
Though his best friend passed away 12 years ago, his spirit lives on through the Karmann Ghia. Shane did an outstanding job restoring it, and I would imagine that if his friend was alive, that he’d be happy to see the way the car looks. Behind every great build is a great story, and Shane’s Volkswagen is a great example of that.