October, 1953 – The Paris Auto Show. People came from all over the world to see just what the car manufacturers were going to show them. They knew what they wanted–they saw themselves as elegant and stylish, and they wanted their car to complement that image.
Volkswagen paid attention to the post-war trends and didn’t disappoint the public. While their Volkswagen Beetle appealed to many people during this time, they chose to speak to the desires of a different type of consumer with their Karmann Ghia. Oddly enough, the car didn’t enjoy the mega-power of some sports cars, but people were looking more for elegant styling which the Karmann Ghia delivered in spades. Volkswagen’s emergence into the sports car market became a huge success and the Karmann Ghia gained popularity worldwide.
Because the Karmann Ghia was handcrafted instead of being produced on an assembly line, it had a higher price tag than the Beetle. This fact only added to its charm for consumers looking for quality, so paying a bit more for it also helped them buy into the belief they were getting something that enhanced their personal image.
As classic car fans know, a well built automobile is indeed a lasting commodity. Members of Volkwagen Karmann Ghia car clubs still contend that it was one of the best cars ever made for the price and they love the nostalgia they feel when tooling down the road in their classic VW sports car. The Karmann Ghia remained in production through the 1974 model year, and in all a total of 445,238 were built in Germany and 41,689 more were produced in Brazil.