A. The easiest way to tell is to open the trunk (in the front) and check to see if the spare tire is laying flat* in a recess in the floor. Another way is to look behind the front wheel. If you see a large vertical spring then that car is a Super Beetle. The spring is part of the MacPherson strut suspension system that is used on all Super Beetles.
Q. Do all Super Beetles have a curved front windshield?
A. No. The 1971-1972 Super Beetles (AKA the 1302) used the same flat front glass as the Standard Beetle. The curved front windshield was first introduced to the 1973 Super Beetle* (AKA the 1303). This glass was used in both the Super Beetle sedan and convertible until the end of production. This new style glass was used to comply with US safety standards with regards to the distance from the occupants and the front glass.
Q. Is the motor in the Super Beetle different from the Standard Beetle?
A. Yes and No. Since 1970 both Standard Beetle and Super Beetle (since 1971) use the same 1600 ccm (actual 1584 ccm) engine in North America. In Europe the "S" or "LS" in 1302S, 1303S, and 1302LS indicates that the car is equipped with a 1600 ccm engine, disk brakes in front, and other trim items. While the versions without the "S" or "LS" featured a 1300 ccm (actual 1285 ccm) engine and drum brakes on all corners.
Q. Which Super Beetle uses the full size dashboard?
A. The full size dashboard was used in 1973 and up SuperBeetle, again in both sedan and convertible models. Before that all Beetles used a flat dashboard that had been basically the same since 1958. The new dash board was going to be used to house future airbags and to modernize the look of the vehicle.
Q. What was the first year for the Super Beetle Convertible?
A. 1971 was the first year for the "topless" Super Beetle. From that year on all convertibles would be of the Super Beetle variety.
Q. Why did Volkswagen come out with the Super Beetle?
A. The principal reasons for the development of the Super Beetle was to increase the utility of the vehicle by providing the customer with a larger luggage compartment and greater comfort. These factors were just as important some 30 years ago as they are today. By providing more luggage space, better handling, greater overall utility and comfort, the Super Beetle gave Volkswagen customers more choice in the model range of the period and greater choice in the market segment.
Q. When was the last Super Beetle made?
A. The last Super sedan was made in 1975 (although the Standard sedan continued for a few more years), 1979 was the last year for the convertible. Convertible production ran until mid January 1980 to fill all the orders for the last Super Beetle convertible ever.
Q. Was the Super Beetle ever made in Mexico?
No. Mexico only produced the Standard Beetle (known as the Sedan), of
which production ended July 31, 2003. Super Beetles were produced in
Germany, Australia and Sarajevo, Yugoslavia.
Q. What are the differences in the 1302L 1302S, 1303A, 1303LS (etc) models that were sold in Europe?
A. The letters at the end denote different trim levels, engine sizes, disc brakes, etc. Here is a list that was sent to us from Mihaly in Romania.
Super Beetle - 1285 ccm dual port engine, strut front suspension , and