Sunday, March 29, 2020

Beetle-engined Simca 8

This beauty used to belong to an uncle of mine who has bought it in late 2007 or early 2008, I don't remember so clearly. It's a 1950 Simca 8 body rebuilt around a Volkswagen Beetle chassis with the wheelbase shortened. The fuel tank cap on the left side of the split front bonnet was adapted from a Honda CG 125 motorcycle, with the fuel tank being mounted in a longitudinal position just like the stock engine used to be, in opposite to the transverse position of the tank when it's fitted to the Beetle. With the engine now mounted where there used to be the trunk, and the lack of openings to improve the air flow for both intake and cooling, it may seem surprising not only that such mods were fairly common in Brazil but also that they actually worked. It could seem to be just a desperate makeshift attempt to keep an old French jalopy running when stock replacements were scarce due to some import restrictions during the '70s and '80s, but considering the endeavour to replace a front-engined ladder-frame for the Volkswagen platform required a good bit of craftsmanship that is unfortunately gone nowadays...

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