The VW 1303 is back home

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I once had a VW 1303, and I sold it. With a heavy heart. For years I have been looking for my Beetle. I found it too late. Eventually, the same VW 1303 returned home in a different size. But not in a different jacket.

I will never forget the last day that I owned VW 1303. I was still working in the mortgage industry, but on the day the Beetle went out I was not very productive. I consistently looked down from floor 2 to the parking lot where the VW 1303 was where I would say goodbye. And every look downward became more painful. Because the hobby car, which had unintentionally become a daily driver part-time, had given me years of pleasure. And really, headaches too.


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New heart

Like that time in 2005, when we went to Stavoren for a long weekend. The engine gave up, the cake was finished after 2 tons. I still see my wife, my daughter and myself waiting for the salvage service that I had engaged via the ANWB. I knew it is ready. And I also knew: there are still plenty of good engines available for a VW 1303. This was done. The Beetle got a donor engine (again a 1.285 cc) and I was able to extend my marriage to the 1303 for years to come, also because I could do simple repairs myself if necessary.

Maxi Cosi grins

Of course, the Beetle was also sensitive to maintenance, but I did not encounter many crazy things (except a defective master cylinder and the mentioned engine). I enjoyed driving it, and I still see my daughter's grin in the Maxi-Cosi when the air-cooled boxer engine started. Those moments were priceless. I often took her for a ride, it was always enjoyable. The VW 1303 brought harmony anyway, it was the car I always felt at home in, an ideal therapist in which you came to yourself after hectic working days. Music on, the friendly boxer sound as a companion and he offered no reason to develop any kind of haste.

Fascinated by panorama window

The VW 1303 was actually the last new Beetle, and as a little boy I just experienced it all. I was fascinated by the changes that Volkswagen made compared to other Beetles. It was essentially a different Beetle, with the shortened nose, the other dashboard and that large panoramic windscreen. And I came across such a Beetle in 2004 on my search for a classic. An imported VW that spent the first 25 years of its life in Germany. Code name 135221. A left hand drive 1303 with 1.3 engine, “L” package and manual gearbox. Originally painted in Leuchtorange, bought in Senegalrot.

Loved by everyone

The Beetle became a household name with family, with friends, with acquaintances, with colleagues. After a winter storage, the Beetle came out again in 2007. To the satisfaction of others too. I can still remember how the VW 1303 was welcomed with cheers after an absence for a while, people loved that car. Many times and in various random places people approached me, wanted to know everything about the car. For me it was one of the many answers to the question why a Beetle was loved. Why the Beetle was important. I was proud of the VW 1303 every minute.

Still sold

Still, I sold it. My wife got a job out of town, and because the four of us were now the family rhythm had changed. Besides, I didn't want three cars on the sidewalk, I thought that was a bit overdone. The VW 1303 also faced a number of costs, something had to be done (cosmetically). New furniture and a new battle against emerging rust made the choice difficult. To keep or not. It was the last, and the moment I sold the car I knew I should never have let ratio prevail. But it was too late. Regret for years.

Found a week late

I eventually tracked him down, via Catawiki. Unfortunately, that was just a week late, because the Beetle was sold through the online auction house. Had that not happened, I would have outbid everyone who made an offer. I wanted my Beetle back, the VW 1303 had to come home again.

Export: final farewell

I was hoping to find the VW 1303 again. And I decided to make another attempt. The circle, he had to go round, that's what I thought. First a check at the RDW. Is it still there? However, the VW 1303 had since been exported. Actually, that was the final goodbye to me, years after my sale. And yet, the story is not over.

Found yet

Fortunately, a large miniature specialist in my hometown offered a VW 1303. Fortunately still available in Senegal rot. In exactly the same color. With almost the same specifications. Eighteen times smaller than the original. Perfectly detailed. I had the model in mind for some time. And now I decided to buy the NOREV VW immediately. For my fiftieth birthday.

Beautiful memories at home

That is how my VW 1303 came home. And every time I look at it, the beautiful memories come to mind. The rides, the little trips, the meeting visits, the tour trips and the spontaneous joy that the VW 1303 also offered to my daughter. The true-to-nature NOREV model says something else: it was a privilege to be the owner of the VW 1303 for years, the car that always remained a bit of me long after the sale.

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