Dean Kirsten’s L19K Yukon Yellow ’67 Vert

In the world of vintage VWs, there are so many special people that make this hobby what it is. Dean Kirsten is one of them. A former writer of Hot VWs Magazine, he reached out to share this very special story of his L19K Yukon Yellow ’67 Vert. It’s an honor. The ’67 Beetle community thanks you!

I would like to share my 1967 convertible with your readers. I found this VW in Naples, Florida after many years of looking for just the right vehicle that wasn’t in need of a lot of repair, or wasn’t fully restored. The more original, the better. After looking at nine ’67 convertibles all over the country, I came across this one just before it went up for sale. Randy Carlson knew I was looking for a very nice ’67 and figured this VW was a good match with my needs. I purchased this ’67 from a dozen photos, and several long phone conversations with the owner. But hearing that he was very ill and his days were numbered, I made the hard decision to take a chance and bought it without seeing it in person. Two weeks later, the car arrived in Costa Mesa, CA, and got my first close up look at what I bought. It drove like a dream, and I was more than pleased with its condition. Three days later, the former owner died of cancer.

This Yukon Yellow convertible was built on June 8, 1967 according to its birth certificate from the factory. It was shipped out of Osnabrueck, Germany on the 9th, and docked into the U.S. in Duluth, Minnesota. From there, it was trucked to Pray Automotive in Greenwich, Connecticut, where it was sold to Rev. Michael Kendall of Waterbury, CT. at the end of June. He used this car for one year, and then sold it to Clifford Swanson on July, 8, 1968, also of Waterbury. Clifford and his wife Elinore owned it until July 15, 2001, where it was sold to George Limnois, who I bought it from on February 6, 2013.

The first owner was a minister who got married and was expecting their first child, so they sold the VW for a larger car. Clifford and Elinore drove this car approximately 90,000 miles. In 1978, they had the exterior repainted and replaced both front fenders with Mexican replacements. During the 33 years they owned it, they never crashed it, and always kept in the garage and only drove it sparingly. Even with two children and various dogs, the top, headliner, boot, rear seat, mats, door panels and rear carpeting are still 100% original! I replaced the two front covers due to the driver’s seat had been patched poorly. I had Lenny Copp of West Coast Classic Restorations do the special request seat covers with proper heat seams and dimensions. He also made up a new gray German carpeting section for the front only.

Prior to the third owner getting ill, George had Monkey Nut in Charlotte, NC, do a detail and re-ring job to the original engine. To date, that HO engine case has never been split, as the pistons were/are 83mm VWs, rod bearings are still original, and cylinder heads have been only cleaned up. While the top end was being freshen up, the transaxle was removed and rebuilt by Mike Gagnier of Troutman, NC. Monkey Nut also went through the brakes, pedals and rear Z-bar. This engine has all the correct parts including the plug-in style generator, short coil with Bosch logo bracket, 30PICT 105-code carburetor with air cleaner support bracket, K-code distributor, Pierburg fuel pump, VW clamps, latch dust cover and so on.

Since I owned this ’67, I have replaced the front fenders with NOS German units, and had the apron and tire well color matched by Buddy Hale. Both bumpers are a match pair of dated coded 2/7, so they have never been replaced! Front headlight bezels are SB12s, the front park lenses are Hella SAE DP66 date code. Nearly every bolt and nut on this car is OEM German Kamax including the big-head fender bolts and flat washers. Front and rear shocks are proper German-made Boge, with the fronts fitted with the VW dust covers and the rears factory painted brown. The floorpan and lower support channels have never been replaced or patched. The doors open and shut like a dream!

Inside, all the dash, door jams and door surfaces are still original paint. The steering wheel, column, shifter, e-brake handle are all unrestored OEM grey-black. There’s a VDO trip speedo, Sapphire 6 AM/FM radio, and both the front hood and glove box lock, of course. Front seat belts are the correct 67 convertible (Ghia) only and actually retract.

Over the years, I have owned a bunch of ’67 VWs, and this one drives better than all of them. Even though a bone-stock 1500 is rather slow, I still enjoy driving this one as it brings me back to 1967 when these were still brand new at the dealers.

Dean Kirsten

Simply amazing.

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. Such a beautiful car! You are fortunate!

  2. Richard A. (Dick) Diaz January 6, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    Good you have such a good accounting of the history of this car! Very nice looking and original car! Well except for those “Mexican replacements” front fenders! I like the car very much!

  3. Yes ….a near perfect specimen if ever one was to be found! Absolutely amazing that such a vehicle could survive in such condition for almost 50 years. The vehicle is unquestionably a gem!
    Perhaps Dean could fill in a couple of details for the curious: why would one of the previous owners have replaced the front fenders, if they were not damaged in an accident? Rust? And if rust, why would only the front fenders be effected? And, not being absolutely certain where Duluth, Minnesota, I googled it, and found it at the far western end of Lake Superior. Isn’t it odd that VW would ship vehicles destined for a dealership in Connecticut so far inland from the east coast, and then pay to have them trucked back eastward? Strange indeed!

  4. Hi Dean, This car is a beauty and has such a cool history. Having seen this car in person at the North County Airkool’d meets it is good to know the back story. Even without knowing this I was drooling over this original looking car. Cheers! See you at an upcoming event.

  5. Thanks for the nice comments. About the front Non-German fenders that were found on the Bug when I first got it. We could not find any signs of an accident on the two inner fender panels, so I can only assume it was easier to replace the original ones during the 1978 respray than to hammer out the dents. The apron showed some poor rework, but since the front bumper is in fact the original date coded one, front end damage is doubtful. I don’t think the hood has ever been off the car either. We did find some poorly done patches underneath, which we redid correctly with German metal. And the port of entry was listed on the car’s birth certificate as Duluth, MN. Dean

  6. I see you won the Most Original Award at the SoCal BugOrama. Well done!

  7. This Vert is the real deal…you are a lucky man Dean, love the history, thanks for sharing!

  8. Congratulations Dean, you have a great looking 67 convertible. Knowing the history of your car makes it even more special. As we have talked Yukon Yellow is great color and your car is outstanding. Being the 50th Anniversary for our beloved 67’s is here hope there are some shows to recognize this very special year.

  9. A very nice car, Dean. Congratulations on all efforts to restore and conserve this beautiful example of a Beetle which only will increase in value over the years. jay

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