VolksKarmannGhia Dame Schnee.jpg
Volkswagen Karmann Ghia
aka Type 14
Production 1955 - 1974
443,478 units
Class Sports Car - Roadster
Body Style 2-door Coupe, 2 door convertible, (two-seater)
Length 4140 mm
Width 1634 mm
Height 1330 mm
Wheelbase 2400 mm
Weight 830 kg
Transmission 4-speed Manual, 3-speed clutchless manual "Autostick", all RWD
Engine H-type (2+2) Flat 4 cylinder engine, 1100,1200, 1300, and 1500cc
Power 32hp, 36hp, 40hp, 48hp
Similar similar (competition)
Designer Mario Boano from Carrozzeria Ghia

The Volkswagen Karmann Ghia was introduced in 1953 in an effort by Volkswagen to join in the "image" car in the post-WWII world. It was first available for sale in 1955. Built on the reliable Beetle Chassis, sporting Porsche-like looks, it sold well in both Europe and the United States until it was discontinued in 1974.

The name Karmann-Ghia was a result of the fact that the car was designed by Carrozzeria Ghia and built by German coachbuilder Karmann.

See Autopedia's comprehensive Karmann Ghia Review.

Feature Changes[]

Each year saw slight tweaks, but the major changes include: In 1960, in order to accomodate US Vehicle Safety Regulations, the headlights were placed higher on the front fenders. The nose grills for fresh air intake were reshaped longer, the front wheel arch was extended towards the rear, and the tail lights were enlarged. Also, a larger 40hp 1200cc engine was put in. In 1966 the engine was increased to a 42hp 1300cc engine. 1968 saw the next biggest change, wherein the suspension was changed from a swing arm to Independent Rear Suspension, and a 48hp 1500cc engine was put in. In 1970, the rear tailights were enlarged, again. Lastly, in 1972, the tailights were enlarged again, and the bumpers were changed to a blockier shape, again for US regulations. Also, the "rear-seat" was removed due to seat-belt regulations. Engine and suspension changes were consistent with Type 1, or Beetle, chassis of the same years.

Styles and Major Options[]

There were not many options available for the Karmann Ghia outside of color options. There were two-tone colors for many years, where the roof was different than the body. Most options were dealer accessories, such as a bamboo parcel tray, a fuel gauge, or beauty rings on the wheels. A Judson supercharger was an option for the 32, 36, and 40 hp models. However, there was a "Sport Ghia" was introduced in 1973 that only came in Saturn Yellow, with black accents around the cabin and a strip between the chrome strips on the side, with slightly larger wheels. In 1967 the Type 34 Karmann Ghia was also introduced, which was larger, a similar yet different design, and had a more powerful engine.


Add more fields as necessary.

Trim1 Trim2 Trim3 Trim4
$Price1 $Price2 $Price3 $Price4
$Price1 $Price2 $Price3 $Price4

Gas Mileage[]

Add more fields as necessary.

As seen on the website, the City/Highway MPG averages are as follows:

Trim1 Trim2 Trim3 Trim4
c/h c/h c/h c/h

Engine and Transmission[]

The Engine and Transmission of the Karmann Ghia were identical to the Beetle. All sported a 4 speed manual or a 3 speed clutchless "Autostick" transmission, mated to a H-type flat 2+2 4 cylinder engine. Sizes ranged from a 32hp 1100cc engine in 1955 to a 48hp 1500cc, introduced in 1968.


Please make sure to write information of the vehicle's performance in a third-person point of view. This section should include information about the car's acceleration figures, handling, braking, etc.

If using information gathered from Road Test articles from a reputable automotive source, then please make sure to cite the quote.


Warranty options and scheduled maintainence information should be mentioned here.


This section should reference points on safety ratings and features of the vehicle.


Add Photos of the vehicle here.

Please make sure not to use copyrighted photos.


List the colors that the particular <MODEL> is offered in.

Main Competitors[]

Create links to other <MAKE> <MODEL> pages in this section.

Hybrid Models[]

Unique Attributes[]

Since the Karmann Ghia was built with a small engine but with sporty looks, it was marketed in both Europe and the United States as "the slowest sports car you'll ever own" and was backed tremendously by the reliability and ease of maintenance of a Beetle.


This section should include information on the interior's design, build quality, ergonomics, space (head and legroom, front and rear), features, stowage compartments and overall comfortability and livability. Add pictures wherever applicable and keep information in a third-person point of view.

Resale Values[]

Add more fields as necessary.

<MODEL> Year
Year X Year X-2 Year X-3 Year X-4
Resale Value
$ $ $ $


Please make sure to keep critiques in a third-person point of view. If using criticisms from a reputable automotive source, then please make sure to cite the quote.


Fill in as many as appropriate. Add more if necessary and pictures wherever applicable.

Please make sure NOT to use copyrighted pictures.

Current Generation: (YYYY–present)[]

Fifth generation (YYYY–YYYY)[]

Fourth generation (YYYY–YYYY)[]

Third generation (YYYY–YYYY)[]

Second generation (YYYY–YYYY)[]

First Generation/Origins (YYYY–YYYY)[]


The Karmann Ghia was built in both Wolfsburg, Germany, and in Brazil. It was sold all over Europe, in the United States, and in South America. It was always known as the Karmann Ghia in all countries.

Design quirks and oddities[]

Even though it was built on the Beetle chassis, it was actually 7 inches wider, so the floors are not interchangable. The VW Thing used the same floors as the Karmann Ghia. Unlike the Beetle, the Ghia's body was welded as a uniform peice, using English Pewter to fill in gaps. Doors, the hood, and the decklid were added later. Convertible, or Cabriolets, had a reinforcement bar in the heater channels to compensate for the lack of roof support. Many people point out the similarities between the design of the Karmann Ghia and the 1953 Chrysler D'Elegance. This is likely because Karmann Coachworks designed that car as well.


List out notable awards that the model has recieved while in production. Boldface the company or organization that gives out the award, and Italicize the name of the award.

See Also[]


Volkswagen Group

Volkswagen | Audi | SEAT | Škoda | Bentley | Bugatti | Lamborghini | Ducati | Porsche


Cars: Golf · Golf R20 · Golf GTI · Jetta · Passat · New Beetle · Eos · Touran · CrossTouran · Golf Plus · CrossGolf · Fox · Polo · CrossPolo · Polo GTI · Phaeton · Sagitar · Passat Lingyu · Santana 3000 · Santana · Lupo · Passat CC · Scirocco · Lavida · Gol · Parati · Gol Country · Saveiro · New Mid-Size Sedan · Vento · Passat NMS · Up!

Vans/SUV/MPVs: Routan · Touareg · Sharan · Caravelle · Tiguan · SpaceFox · Suran · CrossFox · Multivan · California · Transporter · Crafter · Caddy · Caddy Maxi ·

Trucks: Amarok


Cars: Beetle · Corrado · Dasher · Thing · Karmann Ghia · Karmann Ghia 1500/1600 · Karmann Ghia TC · SP2 · Type 87 Kommandeurswagen · 411 · Pointer · 1500 · Brasilia · 1600 · K70 · Derby · Type 3 · Type 4 · Apollo · Logus · Rabbit · Citi Golf

Vans/SUVs: Eurovan · Vanagon · Bus · Kübelwagen · Fridolin · Type 2 · · · · · · · · · · · · ·

Trucks: Saveiro · Taro · · · · · · · · · · · · · ·

Concept Vehicles

Golf GTI W12 650 Concept · Iroc Concept · Tiguan Concept · EcoRacer Concept · GX3 · Beetle Ragster · Concept A · Concept C · Concept R · Concept T · W12 Nardo · Cheetah · Microbus · 1 Litre · Up! Concept · Polo Cabrio Concept · Concept Slipstream · Space Up! Concept · Viseo Electric Concept · Space Up! Blue Concept · Golf Variant RaVe 270 Concept · EGO Concept · ONE Concept · ROOM Concept · Touareg North Sails Concept · Caddy Topos Sail Concept · Golf BlueMotion Diesel Concept · Concept Pickup · Caddy 4MOTION PanAmericana Concept · Bio Runner Concept · Scirocco Study R Concept · BlueSport Concept · 'NMS' · Polo BlueMotion Concept · Wörthersee 09 Polo GTI Concept · Wörthersee 09 Golf GTI Concept · L1 Concept · E-Up! Concept · Up! Lite Concept · New Compact Coupe Concept · Milano Taxi EV Concept · E-Lavida Concept · Tapiro Concept · London Taxi EV Concept · E-Bugster Concept · Beetle R Concept


Touareg TDI Trophy Truck · Scirocco GT24-CNG · Race Touareg 3

Ferdinand Porsche · Major Ivan Hirst · Gläserne Manufaktur · Engines

German Labour Front (Deutsche Arbeitsfront), a Nazi trade union Corporate website A subsidiary of the Volkswagen Group

External Links[]

Please include any external sites that were used in collaborating this data, including manufacturer sites, in this section.