One of the most popular base vehicles for trike builders has long been the VW Beetle. The People’s Car has a long history of offering up its internals to kit car builders and trike builders were quick to catch on to the suitability of the Beetle as a basis for building trike conversions. With integral gearbox and torsion bar rear suspension in a unit, the Volkswagen Beetle powerplant can be attached to a main frame and forks section, making construction of a 3-wheeler relatively straightforward, so much so that over the years several VW trike conversion kits have been offered. The ease with which the Beetle engine can be tuned, the easy availabilty of custom add-on parts and its general accessibility have all contributed to make it a real favourite. VW trikes are fun to ride, can be quite practical to own and always seem to be in demand, really good examples commanding high prices all year round.
As with all trike conversions standards of construction can vary enormously. A cheap project trike might look like a load of fun but the cost of putting right a poorly engineered example can quickly mount up. In the case of a Volkswagen trike, engine problems are the least of your worries. The Beetle motor has legendary strength and reliability and parts availability is second to none. Of more importance is the quality of construction of the chassis and braking system and it is always worth having a potential purchase inspected by a qualified engineer. Ignore the fancy custom paintwork and the custom chrome bling, quality workmanship, legality and safety should be the first priority for any trike rider. If you don’t fancy a home engineered example there are several factory built VW powered examples available including the lovely Boom Trikes which are manufactured in Germany. They are pricey but look stunning, ride beautifully and are guaranteed to turn heads wherever you go!