and welcome to WolfsburgWired, the monthly online newsletter of
information for customers and friends of Wolfsburg West.
|Beetle and Bus Speedo Versions
month, we will concentrate on the 1949-1979 Beetle speedometers,
and finish the speedometer series next month with the 1950-1979
Bus speedometer series.
May 1949 - September 1952
may be asking, "where are the oil pressure/ generator warning
lights and directional/high-low beam indicator lights?"
Yep, they are de- finitely missing, due to the fact that
these displayed within the dash pod!! The dash pod is a
Bakelite backing which serves as a means to mount the speedometer
and displays the indicator lights. The dash pod was placed
dead center of the dashboard on all September 1952 and earlier
Beetles. This is most definitely the simplest speedo that
VW used. Nothing fancy, just an odometer, red marks for
permissible speeds in individual gears and a rate of travel
needle. The speedo depicted measures the rate of travel
in kilometers per hour. For countries measuring in units
of miles per hour, 0-80 miles per hour could be measured
(just in case your 1949 Hebmuller was Okrasa powered!!).
October 1952 - March 9, 1953
omits the dash pod, and incorporates the warning lights
and directional indicator lights within the speedometer.
The speedometer is now located directly behind the steering
wheel, which will be its final resting-place. VW also incorporated
a translucent speed indicator needle, and repositions it
to the 7 o’clock idle position. The speedometer face was
finished with a black face and grey accents, which was previously
brown. For countries measuring units of travel in miles
per hour, 0-80 miles an hour could be measured. The unit
depicted features an optional trip meter, which is not present
in production model vehicles.
March 10, 1953 - December 1953
speedometer is identical to the March 9, 1953 unit, with
the exception of the directional indicator light. The previous
unit used two separate arrows, pointing in either direction
(the lamps did not illuminate individually, however). The
new unit features one arrow, with point at each extreme.
This speedometer measures rate of travel from 0-120 kilometers
per hour or from 0-80 miles per hour. (This speedometer
is not depicted)
January 1954 - July 1960
speedometer is very similar to the December 1953 unit, with
a few the exceptions. The directional indicator light was
of the same design, but slightly enlarged. Also, for all
1956-1959 convertibles painted Inca red, the color of the
directional indicator illumination cell was changed from
red to that of a yellowish color. This was done to provide
a contrast between the color of the dashboard and the indicator
illumination in an effort to notify the driver upon the
status of the directional indicators. The red marks for
permissible speeds in individual gears were changed slightly
to compensate for the increased engine horsepower. This
speedometer measures rate of travel from 0-120 kilometers
per hour or from 0-80 miles per hour.
August 1960 - July 1962
made a few adjustments to this speedometer. The clear rate
of travel needle was deleted and a white, solid needle was
used. VW deleted the gearshift indication markings, it was
now up to the pilot to decide and when to change gears!!
Speedometers produced from May 1962 are now equipped with
a green cell for directional indication, previous models
used red. In addition, all European destined automobiles
were equipped with a red line inscribed onto the 50 K/hr
mark, which served as a reminder for European local speed
limits. The range for the rate of travel measurement was
adjusted to compensate for a newly adapted engine and transmission.
The speedometer now measures 0-140 kilometers per hour or
0-90 miles per hour. The unit depicted features an optional
trip meter, which is not present in production model vehicles.
August 1963 - July 1967
much changed from the July 1962 speedometer, with the exception
of the gearshift markings now reinstalled for all speedometers
that measure distance units in miles per hour. The speedometer
retains the 0-140 kilometers per hour and 0-90 miles per
August 1967 - July 1968
incorporates the fuel gauge within the speedometer, and
moves the high-low beam indicator light to just below the
3 o’clock level. The speedometer retains the 0-140 kilometers
per hour and 0-90 miles per hour measurements.
August 1968 - July 1970 Beetle, 1971 standard Beetle and
changes the face into a solid black configuration with taller
numbering. The former face was black with gray accents.
1969 Beetles retained the center most chrome garnishing
ring, while the 1970-1971 Beetles sported a white painted
circular ring and the outer bezel was painted silver. Also
added was a tenth of miles measurement for cars equipped
with speedometers measuring in miles per hour. For cars
equipped with a rear window defroster, an indicator light
was added to the 8 o'clock position, and an ATF (automatic
transmission fluid) indicator light was added to the 4 o'clock
position. The speedometer retains the 0-140 kilometers per
hour and 0-90 miles per hour measurements. Most speedometers
were produced with fuel gauge provisions, however some were
not depending on original purchasers' option.
August 1971 (1972 standard and Super Beetle) - July 1977
standard Beetle The silver outer bezel is dropped in lieu
of a black bezel. The numbering is changed yet again, this
time in favor of a shorter, bolder variety. A new rate of
travel indicating needle is also installed. All indicator
lights remain the same. Also, on some of these cars, the
rate of travel indicator needle was painted fluorescent
orange. Most speedometers were produced with fuel gauge
provisions, however some were not depending on original
purchasers' option. The speedometer now measures 0-160 kilometers
per hour or 0-100 miles per hour, however some were produced
with both gradients.
1973 - 1979 Super Beetle
Super Beetle speedometers are identical to the previous
standard Beetle in terms of numbering style, how- ever the
ATF indicator light is omitted, and an EGR light is added
to 1975-1979 fuel injected cars. The face of the speedometer
is set an angle to compensate for the Super Beetle dashboard.
The speedometer retains the 0-160 kilo- meters per hour
or 0-100 miles per hour measurements, how- ever some were
produced with both gradients.
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Published by Wolfsburg West
Specializing in parts for the restoration of 1979 and earlier Volkswagen cars.
Snail: Wolfsburg West, 2850 Palisades Dr. Corona, CA 92880
Voice: 951-549-0525 ~ Fax: 951-549-0580 ~ Toll free (orders only): 888/965-3937