Owning a classic Volkswagen can be a dream come true for many car enthusiasts. To help make that dream a reality, Fuzz offers his expert advice on choosing the perfect car.
1. Fools Rush In
Shining paintwork is always alluring, but it may well be disguising some less than perfect repairs. Take your time and look at how the light reflects off the flanks of the car. Patched in repairs will often reveal themselves by a slightly different texture to the paint.
2. Mind the gaps
Check the fit of the doors, bonnet and boot. The gaps should be even along each side. If they’re not, look more closely at how the car has been put together. Uneven gaps can sometimes indicate a poorly reconstructed body shell or even accidental damage.
3. Follow that car
Ask the vendor to take the car out for a good 10-mile spin. Follow the car and note how it sits on the road. You can also check for a smoky engine under differing driving conditions and malfunctioning rear lights, indicative of the state of the maintenance of the vehicle.
4. Go for a drive
If you have the insurance cover for driving the vehicle, go out for a spin with the vendor. Having a friend with you is useful for personal safety as well as another set of eyes and ears to check for knocks, rattles and smells. If the car’s a non-starter, assume the worst.
5. The project car
If the car you’re after is a restoration project, first assess your own skills, budget and facilities. Restoring a car is often, in the long run, far more expensive than buying a decent, working example and knowing what you’re capable of is the most important component of happy classic car ownership.
6. Join the club
The VW scene is extremely vibrant, with loads of clubs covering the many different models. Find one to suit your car and go along to a few local socials. Mixing and meeting with folks on the scene can increase your car knowledge and may lead to the purchase of your ideal vehicle.
By getting a classic car quote through Carole Nash you can also be entered into a free prize draw for a chance to win a Mazda MX5 Eunos V-Spec*.
If you’ve been inspired by Fuzz’s tips and have found your classic VW, then we’d love to see it! All you have to do is tweet pictures of your car to @insideclassics.