The Fun, The Frightening & The Downright Dangerous – 50 VW Accessories You Never Knew You Needed.

Words by Nick Skinner

We’re looking back at some of the weird, wonderful and absolutely bat-sh*t ideas that people had for their Volkswagens through the years.

Let’s begin with a bit of blasphemy…

Just imagine… Either way. Cutting out an Oval to put in a box window. Or, putting an Oval where it shouldn’t rightly be.

Imagine that moment. Where you looked at your brand-new Type 2 Splitscreen, with its beautiful razor sharp peak and thought “Nope. I’m having none of that. It needs a nose.” Also, I’ve been informed by Ned that in the instructions for this particular bit of heresy, the tools include a hammer and chisel…

This one’s easy – Rolls Royce nose conversions for Beetles are an acquired taste.

Again, another thing that once seen – cannot be unseen. Nothing about this makes a Type1 look any better in any way, shape or form.

Wait. What? Who even thought of this one!? This is rumoured to be a fake though.

Look at the dates for these – Finishing up with the ’66 cars – Pre-’66s had great tail-lights.

From Modern Motor in December 1955 – Quad pipes on a 36HP motor… check out that exhaust!

Ok, now I should be blasting this for being all types of wrong. But, I seriously dig this.

This does not seem safe at all… Like, at all.

Ok, this isn’t so much of a bad idea as a bad bit of VW history.

A hand-starter for a Type1 & Type2 engine. Just remember, watch those fingers and keep your arms and sleeves inside the ride at all times…

Ok, this probably didn’t catch on for a couple of reasons… Turning the back of your Beetle into a playpen.

As dangerous as this is – boiling hot liquid near you while in control of a car. It’s totally something we want in our car!

How cool is this column shifter!? It didn’t catch on but that linkage is super cool.

This one is really special – A hoover powered by your exhaust…

Everything was better in the 70s… including this wicked layout from Kamei catalogue. Need to find a set of those seats…

Ever wanted to take your Type1 camping? Back in the day, someone came up with this rad set-up for the inside and an outside awning!

Speaking of sleeping in a Beetle, look at this ultra-cool lay flat seats for a Type1…

Imagine going for that downshift and then BAM! Big handful of nothing.

An auxiliary fuel tank for a Type1 is actually not a bad idea. Hate to think how you manage to get them both to seal…

Why have a roof rack when you can put a spare room up there? Super rare accessory and when the car is full, it can be used for extra seating apparently…

What every Type1 needs – Front end downforce. No, this was an early fuel economy accessory to apparently help get more out of your fuel tank.

Super cool cargo racking for the interior of a VW Type3.

Fitted luggage, specific for car, isn’t a new fad. Dating back to the earliest days of cars it’s always been possible on some of the finest coach built machines to grace the road. Oh, and of course the eternal Type1.

Simple but really clever. Bolt on towing eye for a VW Type1.

Cargo tables for everything! Including a couple of Type2’s.

When those heater channels just weren’t up to the task… You got to the aftermarket. A really cool heater system to heat up those frosty mornings.

Talking of controlling temperatures in a classic VW, this genius way of fitting an AC unit into a Type2 actually looks like it could have worked pretty well!

Was it designed to specifically fold into the front bonnet of a VW Type1 or did it just so happen to be the right size?

Specifically for a Karman Ghia – The bolt on tow-bar is a brilliant idea!

Because your road trip passengers need more of an excuse to fall asleep and let you do all the driving – Reclining front seats in an early Type1.

Bubble windows – A necessary accessory for every Type1.

I think this is about aftermarket turning lights or indicators? Either way, a pretty good upgrade it seems.

How else would you put your boat on the roof of your Type2?

Really early KDF car with a writing desk… Yep, a writing desk.

Rear tow hook on a Type1 – Pretty good accessory if you need yours towing a fair bit.

Another accessory from the world of keeping kids safe in old VW’s from yesteryear. Not a babyseat in sight…

Or, if you didn’t want you little pride and joy safe and secure in the car – why not just hook it over the seat back?

Aftermarket gauge cluster/centre console set-up. Actually, this looks pretty good…

Period key pouches are always going to be cool. Especially when they’re for your Volkswagen.

EMPI rear bucket seats for a Beetle – These need to make a comeback along with Street Machines and Boogie Vans.

Early Kamei catalogue showing just how you can upgrade your Beetle’s front seats to be super fancy and stylish.

Beetle trailer! The great accessory every known to man. I really wish this had kept going…

This period catalogue looks like an absolutely nightmare! But, some really cool bits and pieces you could fit your car.

Pretty cool fitted footrest for Type1. Interesting shape and build to be honest.

Side window wipers! Good if you’re going broadside or if the rain is coming at your from all angles.

Best place to put your ashtray – right on the gearstick shaft of your Type1.

Before the age of centre-locking and even before steering locks, VW offered you this!

And what round up of VW accessories wouldn’t be complete without this! The humble “easy to fit” mud flaps!

VW Accessories - Full Gallery