Reverse Light Wiring Diagram

'67 Beetle Reverse Lights

If you own a ’67 Beetle, the rear reverse lights should be an old friend. They have provided confidence in the form of two bright bulbs illuminating your rear view, every time you put the car in reverse.

Sometimes, things don’t always work as they should. Currently, my own ’67 Beetle has a short somewhere in the reverse lights. With the recent birth of our twins, I’ve yet to make time to track the problem. This reverse light diagram was sent to and thought I’d share. If you ever run into a short yourself, this should help you track the issue. Download below.

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Posted by Eric Shoemaker

Hello, I'm Eric. I started Air-Cooled Artifacts (previously, and Lane Russell). I drive a '67 Beetle daily and love to share vintage Volkswagen stories with the world.

  1. Back up… wait, twins?!! Ha!

    1. Don’t you love how I threw that in there kinda under the radar? :)

  2. Who knows the difference between early & late back up lights?

    1. Hmmmm! School us, wise one.

      1. The lenght of the wire. Early lights have about a three foot length, were as the later lights have about an inch of wire with a female connector.

        1. You’ve got the sickness, bro.

  3. Congrats on your beaitiful twins Eric ! Hope all is well.

    1. Thank you!!!!

  4. Congratulations Mom & Dad. You will need to find a matching pair of 67s’. I’m a twin, from waaaaay back.

    1. Sam,
      Thanks! Really, you are? Twin ’67 Beetles; that is a good idea!

  5. Thanks for supplying very useful info

    Hank Bahmer

    1. Sure!

  6. Eric, thank you for wiring diagram. I’m having issues with my back up lights as well and I’m kind of frustrated. I changed the fuse last night and checked the bulbs and that didn’t work, so my next three steps are to check the wires, connectors and switch.
    However, it’s been about 30 plus years since I’ve been underneath a Beetle and I recently purchased an Original Service Manual (Bentley) for my 67 but there are no pictures or mention of where the switch is located ! I will eventually find it, but I can’t remember where exactly it is located on the transmission housing ?

    1. No problem!
      It’s the old saying, “follow the wire.” I believe it’s near the nose cone of the tranny, right in the front. Jay could chime in on this as well. It’s a simple function, so you should be able to track the issue. Let us know!

      1. Thank’s Eric, I appreciate it ! I hope you and your beautiful family are doing well, take care ! Jaime

  7. Congrats on the twins!!!! This story comes just in time for me. I just bought some reverse lights from wolfsburg west for mine. Great info as always. -Louie

    1. Thanks!

  8. reverse lights…… luxury :) i have a 1966….. Great job with the site!!!

    1. Thank you!! It’s fun, and a labor of love.

  9. What size fuse does this inline take?

    1. Derek,
      You’d need to run the 8 AMP. Wolfsburg West has them.

  10. Hi,

    What guage wire should be used when connecting the reverse lights on a 67 bug? What is the best way to insulate and hold the wires in place under the chassis once you connect them to the reverse switch and run them through the firewall to the coil and to the reverse lights?

    Any help is greatly appreciated!

    1. Todd,
      The vintage VW smoke signals are out. We will have some answers for you soon.

      1. From Jeremy Goodspeed. “16AWG is the closest.”

        1. Awesome! Thanks for the quick reply!

          Any idea what is the best way to secure the wires from the revrrse switch to the coil and lights under the chassis?

          Gonna try to get this done this weekend.

          1. Let me look at my ’67.

          2. Todd…Here’s Jeremy Goodspeed with the answers:

            For those who need the routing of the back-up wiring

            Routing of the back-up light wiring should start @ the 15 terminal (powered with key on) of the coil and route behind the carburetor to a bracket on the upper right of the fan shroud. At this point a fuse holder with an 8 amp fuse is recommended. The shroud has a small hole to support the clip that holds the fuse holder. from this point the wire wraps around the shroud to a grommet on the right bottom of the rear fire wall. The wire goes directly to the switch on the front of the transmission. From this switch the output wire goes back the same way and has a 1 into 2 terminal just before going back into the same grommet on the firewall. Two wire will enter here. one wire goes to the left side and the other goes right. each wire will exit in the same hole as the taillight harness. there is a clip in the fender well and the wire is supported here as not to come into contact with anything else. From there it exits at the bumper lower bumper grommet.
            Jeremy Goodspeed

            Thanks Jeremy!

  11. Thanks Jeremy, Eric, Jody, and J.K.! I appreciate the help! I will let you know how it goes this weekend.

  12. Let’s add this Link to Jeremy’s description of the routing of the wires and the clip by which wiring is attached to the inside fender well:

    If this clip is not the same, it is quite similar and should work for the same purpose.

    Thanks, Jeremy!

  13. Guys,

    My 1967 Beetle cabriolet now has functioning reverse lights! Thanks for all the help and advice! I will post some photos as soon as possible. It’s been a miserable, cold rainy weekend here, so this was the perfect project!

    Again, thanks for the help!


    1. Great to hear!

    2. That’s the way to make a cold, rainy day count, for sure! Congratulations on the reverse lamp installation. jay

  14. The download link is not working.

    1. Let me take a look.

  15. Hi Eric, what terminal is this on the coil please? Also does it matter which way around the terminals are on the reverse switch. Finally, when you say terminal 15 on the fusebox, can you advise what else terminal 15 serves – my car’s been rewired so would be interesting to know whether this is the fuse for say the tail lights, brake lights or other. Many thanks in advance. Sam

  16. Sorry Eric, another question, if you don’t mind; any thought what size for the in-line fuse? Many thanks

  17. I am getting ready to sell my 67 Beetle and when I put it in reverse I heard a click and then my back up lights won’t turn off. Any ideas what I’m looking for?

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