The 1600S has all the features you mentioned and it can also be distinguished by the rear fenders which are "normal" and the tail light is on a metal base, the fenders have a hole cut in them and have a round black plastic riveted onto the fender in order to accommodate the rear tail light lenses.
There should be a metal plate riveted onto the body behind the spare wheel with the identification of where the car was built (VW of South Africa-Utenhage). I have one, but there is nothing there just the holes, the rear boot emblem is made of plastic and should read 1600S. VW of South Africa have no record of how many of these were built as they entered into the whole with the other beetles, but it is estimated that only 2000 to 3000 were built.
PS the front bonnet is also different - the 1303 bonnet won't fit.
28th April 2007.
1600S made in South Africa.
I have all those features mentioned, metal plates with description of the specification behind the upright spare wheel. A plastic emblem 1600S on top of the back bonnet.
SP Volkswagen website has featured one 1600L has all the similar features (one photo attached) and mentioned only 216 units sold, but none mentioned on 1600S model.
I purchased a 1600s last year but it has been resprayed a different colour. It also does not have the original seats and door panels that they came out with.
Spares for this car is very difficult to find so if anyone can point me in the right direction I would greatly appreciate it.. My name is Leighton and I can be contacted on the following numbers...0723150845 or 0825720519 or at work 0119078923.
I enjoy every minute that I spend in this rare car and would like to restore it to its original beauty... or close to as possible... Long live the beetle...
VW South Africa like generally all other countries don´t bother with their original product that launched the company!
They or the decision making VW people have not recognized the potential market for original beetle spares - after all more than 21 million were sold. The quality is excellent, but unfortunately nothing lasts forever. I replaced the floorpan body rubber when I had the floorpan Zn sprayed only to regret it. The new rubber is all cracked and the car is and has been garaged. From this and other parts I have replaced, I prefer to pay more but to have a product equal to the original.
For me quality is synonymous with durability, functionality and aftersales service. (No 6 - 10 year limit).
I also own a 1976 1600S. The badge is made by Injex, it´s plastic and the characters are painted silver Keep it safe as these are No Longer Available (NLA) from VW South Africa.
The comments made on 6 October 2005, 29 March 2007 are all correct (the rear tail light is mounted on a metal spacer which later South African Beetles have - these are also NLA and they tend to rust at the bottom where the water drains.) According to the official VW South Africa historian there are no precise figures of how many were built and the estimate is 2000 - 3000.
The comment (29 March 2007) about the rear fenders (4 pop rivets) and bonnet (unique to this model due to upright spare tyre) are also true, and once again VWSA - NLA. There was a local company that offered the bonnet in fiberglass but I don´t know if they still exist.
The roystyle rims were available in 14" and 15".
The original seats have headrests, which differ to the other non South African built bugs, and the seat rails are the old type without the middle guide, which corresponds to the king and link pin floorpan. They never came out with dual circuit master cylinder, although there was space to accommodate the bigger dual circuit reservoir.
I´m not sure, but I reckon all came with rear side popout windows as standard, as these were plentiful at the scrapyards.
I would suggest someone start a 1600S registry, I know that of the original number there are at least 4 cars less, as I had a dashboard and 4 plastic parts where the switches are lodged - this in RSA where the 1303 or the 1302 were not sold.
Hi every Beetle lover,
My name is Martin Ihrck and I have a 1600S. I bought the car as a demonstration model in August 1978, in Westonaria near Johannesburg. The car is still in daily use, and over the years I have not spent more than R 7000.00 in maintenance. I have been to Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and criss-crossed the Transvaal, never getting stranded on the road, except once when I ran out of petrol. The car has 430,000 km on the clock.
My rear main bearing is starting to make a noise, so I guess the engine will have to come out sooner or later. The car has been nothing but a joy to drive, does not consume a lot of petrol, nor wear the tyres down fast. I am planning on driving the car for the rest of my life!
I had over time a 63, 69, 71, 73, 74 and a 75.
The new 73 and 74 were the best I feel of any I ever owned. Great engines and more power.
The 75 was terrible. Engine and electric woes. Replaced an engine and still had issues with it. The fuel tank is a piece of cake to remove also.
The 73 was a Beetle, which meant no fan for the heat, and cheaper front end suspension issues than the Supers.
I wouldn't be surprised if the 73 and 74 are not still running today if they survived the rust issues. The 75 was the pits, and I stopped owning VW after that.