A Volkswagen of America, Inc., Authorised Dealership sales promotion ‘Give Your Beetle The Sports Bug Look’ prompted by showroom footfall as a result of the popularity of the factory produced Sports Bug Edition.
Authorised Dealerships (and in some cases owners) prepared these Sports Bug look cars by accessorising standard production models with a kit of parts drawn from the contemporary VWoA accessory range as follows: sports wheel options including Volksmag Turtleback Mag’s in silver grey or matte black and Lemmerz steel Baja (Weltmeister/World Champion) “custom” wheels or Mag-Type wheel trims, Sports Bug stripe set, satin black finish external trim items including front and rear gravel guards, rear air intake and engine lid grille trims, door handle finger plates and flared tip exhaust tail pipes. Additional interior accesorisation was achieved also with parts from the accessory range including sports steering wheel and gearshift levers.
We also know that either VWoA or the Authorised Dealership organization commissioned Production Plastics of Michigan to manufacture Black headlamp rings.
We are uncertain if any advice was given to Dealers by VWoA about how to prepare vehicles for the promotion in terms of which models to use as the base but it is evident that both Standard (flat screen/torsion bar) and Super (curved screen/McPherson strut) Beetles received the promotion accesorisation treatment.
The quick way to differentiate between the factory produced Sports Bug and the subsequently inspired Sports Bug look versions is:
Sports Bug: Super Beetles (curved screen/McPherson strut) originally finished in non standard L13M Saturngelb/Saturn Yellow (26) and L96M Marathonblau-metallic/Marathon Blue Metallic (87) paintwork with black external trim and plain window rubbers
Dealer Sports Bug (look): any contemporary Beetle model finished in standard model year paintwork with chrome external trim (including that to window rubbers) embellished with parts from the VWoA accessory range intended primarily to enhance the factory produced Edition.
Information courtesy Shawn Sitar and J T Garwood’s Book, Volkswagen Beetle Car of the Century Volume II, 1961-1980.