Lot 2165

The White Collection

1955 Volkswagen Beetle Custom "Frog Guts"

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$47,600 USD | Sold

United States Flag | Houston, Texas

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Chassis No.
1-1037063
Documents
Bill of Sale Only
  • An appealing chop-top “gasser” Beetle full of attitude and potential
  • One of the earliest creations of the renowned Porsche restorer, Tim Goodrich; campaigned in California circa 1972–1976
  • Heavily and expertly modified for drag racing; excellent build quality and attention to detail throughout
  • 2,180-cc naturally aspirated flat four-cylinder engine said to produce 250 hp at 8,000 rpm
  • Chopped roof, centrally located driver’s seat, roll cage, and dished, staggered wheels
Addendum: Please note that this lot is offered on a Bill of Sale only.

This chop-top “gasser” Volkswagen Beetle was built in Fresno, California by noted Porsche enthusiast Tim Goodrich, who operated an independent Volkswagen and Porsche shop prior to becoming a renowned Porsche restorer. This is one of the first cars Goodrich fully built up, according to the consignor, who acquired it from him in 2018. As one might imagine, its name comes with an amusing backstory: Goodrich’s prior drag car was a Meyers Manx dune buggy-derived machine dubbed “Boss Frog.” When it came time to build a new car, the mechanical components were “gutted” from the old dragster—hence the name, “Frog Guts.”

With a utilitarian Volkswagen Type 1—built in November 1955, as indicated by its chassis number—as the starting point, this gasser has been heavily modified for drag racing. The roof was chopped, giving the Beetle an aggressive, streamlined look. To lighten the car, the center section of the chassis was cut away and replaced with fiberglass. A custom blue metallic paint scheme with the distinctive inscription “Frog Guts” on both doors, combined with the raked stance, created a menacing profile that no doubt caught the attention of competitors on the starting line.

The interior features a unique layout with the driver’s seat centrally located so that their legs straddle a floor-mounted shifter. Sprouting from the sparse dashboard is a wood-trimmed steering wheel in the style of a top-fuel dragster. The only gauges present are a Sun Super Tach tachometer and a VDO oil-pressure gauge, which foreshadow this dragster’s purity of purpose.

Under the rear hood is a 2,180-cubic-centimeter naturally aspirated flat-four-cylinder engine said to produce an impressive 250 horsepower at 8,000 rpm thanks to extensive modifications, including fitment of a Pauter crankshaft and Chevrolet piston rods. The setup was reportedly good for a quarter-mile time of 11.34 seconds at 117 mph; an undated Fresno Dragways time slip accompanying the car indicates an 11.96-second pass at 105.73 mph, hinting at this radical Beetle’s true potential. A Mooneyes fuel tank is mounted up front.

Riding on dished and chromed staggered wheels with appropriately beefy rear tires, this impressive gasser Beetle is perfect for the nostalgic collector looking to reminisce bygone drag-racing days or fully recommission it for more quarter-mile fun. Moreover, its excellent build quality, high attention to detail, and unified aesthetic vision speaks to the talent of its builder, Tim Goodrich—a man equally capable of executing a concours-quality Porsche restoration and transforming the humble VW Beetle into something so much more.