2024 - Hot VWs Magazine

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Product image 22024 - Hot VWs Magazine
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Hot VWs Magazine March 2024: Twin Turbo Insanity!

On the cover: Jose Salazar’s insane twin-turbo 1953 Barndoor! (Photo: Stephan Szantai)

El Rey de Splits
On page 42 of this issue, you will discover the twin-turbo 1953 Deluxe Microbus owned by Jose Salazar. Guess what… Jose also owns a second, highly detailed turbocharged beast, based on another rare model, a 1952 “11G” Split Window Beetle – a car that has raised the standards within the VW scene.

Barndoor Buses have become some of the most sought-after VW models ever, especially the elusive 23-window version. Can they be improved? Certainly not, will shout the vintage fans – yet the custom fringe of our scene might disagree. This leads us to introduce to you Jose Salazar’s ground-breaking twin-turbo 1953 Microbus…

Dave Pipoly’s Compound!
Since 2002, Dave Pipoly has created some of the vehicles most wanted by VW publications around the world. The brain behind The Compound (Long Beach, California), Dave is one of the top-tier builders of mega-detailed Volkswagens, who constantly wows enthusiasts while continuing to raise the bar. As he was involved in two of the cars featured in this issue, we decided to find out more about the man.

Southern California’s Vintage VW Treffen has a special place in the hearts of many Volkswagen enthusiasts, due to its astounding selection of vehicles – only the rarest models can join the festivities. The 2023 event inaugurated a new venue, which pleased participants and visitors.

A ‘69 Red Hot notch!
We come across many modified Volkswagens here at hotVWs, however few are as thought out and detailed as Chris Gosting’s 1969 Notchback build from Pahrump, Nevada. Featuring a 2.7 liter Corvair conversion and outfitted with air conditioning, this bright red Notch is lighting up the highways! 

The annual VW Nationals takes place each year at Mason Dixon Dragway in Boonsboro, Maryland. The ninth event proved to be another great success with 99 VW racers taking to the track while 128 cars signed up to be judged in the show.

Old School Power!
Building a 1700cc screamer just like we did back in the ’70s

Buggy Wonder Years
While some dune buggies were clearly designed for off-road adventures, others had a definite “street edge”, being longer and lower. This is the story of one such vehicle, the superbly penned Deserter GT which came out of the East Coast.

A Big Surprise ‘67
During the Volks Group Summer Showdown event (see our February 2024 issue), the organizers, along with the rest of the participants and track officials, celebrated a special individual who has been dedicated to supporting local drag racing –  with a fully restored ’67 Cal Look Bug. However, the awardee was unaware of this gift until she was presented with the key. It was a big Surprise.

And More!

Hot VWs Magazine February 2024

On the cover: Garage scene with Mark Akullian’s 1961 Ragtop. That’s Mark, polishing his real BRM mag rims. (Photo: Shin Watanabe)

My Hot ‘56
Larry Schultz has been a Cal Look enthusiast for over five decades and grew up in the golden era of Southern California’s VW scene. During his young days, his memories were filled with drag racing at Orange County International Raceway with his brother and father. Today, he resides just a few blocks away from Route 66 in Oklahoma, at the very top edge of the Kansas state border, 1,500 miles away from the Cal Look Mecca. However, he indulged in a traditional Cal Looker – a true flash back to the 1970s at OCIR.

Back in September 1984, hotVWs magazine unveiled Angie and Jack DiGiacomo’s black ’66 sedan, which changed hands in 1994 and disappeared shortly after from the VW scene. Their son Jack Jr., who had fond memories of the car, managed to track it down and buy it back… To the family’s amazement, the Cal Looker has remained untouched!

California Gold
During his childhood back in the 1970s and ’80s, Mark Akullian was heavily influenced by Southern California’s Volkswagen scene. Along the way came the vision of a yellow Beetle and he soon started collecting parts. Turning this vision into reality took 30 years – the long journey led to this amazing project car.

Old School Power! Part 1
Building a 1700cc screamer using both new and vintage performance parts.

The Volks Group Summer Showdown 1
After helping run the successful Fast4Cartel VW drag race series for six seasons, Jeff “JK” Kramarsic – a 50% owner of the organization – left the group based in the Northern California and Oregon area in early 2023. It was shocking news to many. Drag racers and fans were curious about his next move. Well, here it is: the new VW Drag Race series organized by JK – The Volks Group. 

Old towns and old Volkswagens truly go hand in hand, when it comes to car shows. To prove the point, team hotVWs traveled to the 2nd Nor Cal Dub Affair, hosted in beautiful San Juan Bautista. You can bet it will turn into a local favorite in years to come!

Dune buggies had a huge following during the 1960s, hence even companies outside the VW scene took notice. Among them, Sears which relied on its catalogs and extensive chain of department stores to market the Rascal buggy, an obvious Meyers Manx copycat. You’re in luck: We found great, never published color slides of the model in our archives!

Big Wednesday
The organizers of this event, Periscope Enterprises, purposely avoid promoting this happening. Yet if you want to be part of this VW and surf gathering by the beach, you simply need to remember the following: On the second Wednesday in August, VW boys and girls skip work, bring surfboards and drive their Volkswagens to San Onofre State Beach.

Tech Alert #72
R unning a stock Solex carburetor can be a beautiful experience. Let’s take a look at how to fix up an old one you may have in your box of spares.

And More!

Hot VWs Magazine - January 2024

On the coverOn the cover: Could this be the most significant Bus find of the decade? (Photo: Chadly Johnson)

The most significant Bus find of the decade. Some stories are so unbelievable that I wouldn’t even think them real if I had not seen and felt the evidence with my own eyes and hands. At times, I am not sure that I am not just living in the matrix or some dream. This is the story of an almost unbelievable find, the Schulwagen.

For seven generations and over 70 years, the VW bus has been one of the most iconic and popular vehicles in the world. Volkswagen wanted to celebrate this remarkable history and invite all fans to the VW Bus Festival 2023 at the Hanover exhibition grounds, promising an unforgettable weekend. We flew over the Atlantic Ocean to the hometown of the VW Bus, Hanover, Germany, to witness more than 6,000 VW Buses camping together.

Residing in Northern Germany, a father of two and a devoted husband, Arne Steffen became enamored with air-cooled Volkswagens at the age of 18 in 1984. After four decades, he is still a dedicated VW enthusiast. We will showcase his current vehicle, the high-speed Autobahn Express van.

This is way beyond cool. Who would have ever imagined we could have a VW show taking over a pier, especially when the location is one of the most popular tourist spots in southern California? Don Ramsey and the Huntington Beach VW Van/Surf Club Köwabunga Van Klan have done it again – they parked 100 VW buses on the Huntington Beach pier!

Some say two is always better than one. Morgan Ingmire, whose family has owned a 1973 Squareback since it rolled off the showroom floor, didn’t hesitate to bring home a second orange Type 3 when he had the chance to add it to his stable.  

Some VW folks have all the luck. Steve Mizzi received a ’61 Beetle as a present seven years ago. It soon evolved from a tame stocker into a ferocious animal, with a wide and low-to-the-ground stance, complemented with a 330-horsepower flat-four.

By now, many of you will know about the hundreds of buggy-related color slides – most dated from the late ’60s – which we have fortuitously found in our archives. This month’s article focuses on the low, aggressive and innovative Bugetta, conceived by legendary Indy car builder Jerry Eisert.

BUG-IN #47
Starting in early June, southern California began a VW extravaganza that extended over three weekends & featured eight major events. The culmination of the 2023 So Cal VW week was the legendary Bug-In.

Although disc brakes hadn’t quite caught on in American made cars, VW introduced air-cooled Type 1 and Type 3 customers to disc brake systems as early as 1965. Let’s take a look at this most popular caliper format, and see what’s available in disc brake upgrades.

And More!



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