Not Your Average – Rare and Unique Wheels in the VW World

Photos by Ned Faux

It’s good to celebrate the unusual, the unique and the downright hard to come by. Some sets of wheels have become synonymous with the Volkswagen world since time began almost, but some people out there have found new styles and applications to give their car or bus a totally different attitude.

  • Australian Flowers 5×205 15” – Australia

These are about as rare as they get! Period late-60’s aluminium wheel. If you’re lucky enough to find a set, you’re sure as hell going to pay for them. 

  • Superior Formula Vee/Turtle Backs 4×130 15” – USA

A Californian aluminium wheel by Superior Industries in late Beetle fitment. Although not the rarest wheel out there, prices for these seem to have sky rocketed over the past few years. We love the application running 4-lug on this bus…

  • Heritage Wheel by Volkswagen 5×112 17” – Germany

An option on the last generation of New Beetles. It was only a matter of time before they made their way on to an air-cooled vehicle.

  • Unknown custom 5×205 14” – Sweden

These are an original Swedish wheel that have been welded and re-drilled to wide-5. Living proof that 14” wheels can look the part. 

  • Randar Circus wheels 5X205 15” – USA

Made in the USA, these were a rare wheel even when the maker was still with us, but now almost impossible to come by since his death in 2018. – RIP Randee.

  • Lemmerz Sprintstars 5×205 15” – Germany

A go-to wheel sold by EMPI in the 70’s. Not a particularly rare sight on a split but getting that pair of 8″s on the back must have taken some doing! 

  • Buick Electra/Wildcat  5×127 15” – USA

American muscle car wheels… Why not!

  • Custom Gas Burner style 5×130 “17 – Unknown

Our apologies but we don’t know the in’s and out’s on these wheels. From here they look to be a reproduction 15” Gas Burner face set in to a 17” barrel. Please let us know if this isn’t the case and we’ll amend to suit.

  • BTR 5×205 “15 – USA

We’ve seen original BTR buggy wheels fitted to slammed VW’s for well over 10 years now. But price, availability and squeezing them on the back-end most cars leaves them a relatively uncommon sight.

  • Melber Penta 5×112 “15 – Germany

Originally made for Mercedes, these aluminium wheels are also the correct PCD for Late Bay and T25’s.

  • Titanio Venus 5×205 “15 – Brasil

A 70’s aluminium Brazilian wheel mostly seen on Beetles due to their awkward offset, a lot of work was required to fit them on the back of a Type2.

  • Guestro Industries (South African Sprintstars) 5X205 15” – South Africa (Custom)

Interestingly, also known as Rostyles, but not made by Rostyle. We guess because of their resemblance to Range Rover or MG Rostyle wheels. This set have been heavily modified to fit 17” barrels.

  • Porsche 911 Steel Wheels 5×130 15” – Germany

These wheels where still used for the 911 spare well in to the 80’s. Although an uncommon sight on VW’s, they’re relatively easy to come by, but like everything with a Porsche badge they demand a premium for what is quite a plain wheel. 

  • Group4 repro Campagnolo 5×130 15” – Italy

Originally designed for the DeTomaso Mangusta in the late 60’s, these wheels are still available brand new. However, they remain a rare sight on an air-cooled VW. Don’t they look great! 

  • Shelby Cal 500 5×112 14” – USA

Once the main Hayburner vehicle, this Late Bay has been rolling on these wheels for well over 10 years. The bus has never looked better, yet more proof that 14”s work well on the right bus. 

  • American Racing Shelby Cobra 5×114.3 15” – USA

Only set we’ve ever seen on a VW. And, they work so well!

  • Delta Mics Porsche 5×130 15” – France

Once again, a wheel we’ve only ever seen one set of. Ultra-rare 2 piece wheel.

  • Porsche Teledial 5×130 17” – Germany (Custom)

These are a pretty common Porsche wheel. Theres always a few sets available on eBay. However, this set seem to have been modified to fit 17” barrels.

  • Unknown Custom 5×205 16” – Sweden (Custom)

These are an original Swedish wheels that our editor had welded and re-drilled to Wide-Five for the Hayburner ’51 project. When the project was sold, the wheels ended up back in Sweden and were spotted by chance this year in Germany on a ’49 Ragtop. 

  • Mag Industries GT wheels 4×130 15” – England

One-piece cast wheel made in the UK for the American market. A great looking 4-lug you just don’t see often enough.

  • Crestlines 5×205 15” – USA

A rare wheel not seen as much as you’d think considering their popularity in the US. With a similar look to ET, Cal Parts and Rocket Racing they give a tough look to any VW.

  • Halibrand Safety wheels 5×205 15” – USA

Two-piece magnesium race wheels. Also known as, rocking horse shit.

  • Norlett 5×205 16” – Norway

We know very little about these wheels. other than they weren’t originally made with a VW in mind and there’s only two surviving sets known to exist today.

  • Revolution wheels 5×130 15” – England

Another ultra-rare set of wheels you wont see everyday. The same as Compomotive, but just as hard to come by.

  • Ronal Keeblatt 4×130 15” – Switzerland

A fantastic original 4-bolt wheel we don’t see often enough. Perfect application for a late Bug, Type3 or even Porsche 914.

  • Minilite 5×130 15” – England

Although best known in the Mini/MG world, Minilite were very popular throughout the 70’s as an aftermarket wheel for racing Porsche 911/12’s. We’ve seen a Split bus running them and they work really well.

  • Gotti 5×130 15” – France

Making racing wheels since 1966, Porsche-fitment Gotti wheels are very hard to come by and you pay for them when they do come up. Beware of fakes though, we’ve seen too many people get stung!

  • JP MK2 5×130 15” – Sweden 

The set in this photo were actually Chevy pattern but, they also did Volvo pattern in this style. A great looking wheel but rare and valuable in 5×130.

Rare Wheels Full Gallery