Lynn took 38 years finding his dad's VW Type 3 and restored it to former glory
Lynn Pfenning spent 38 years chasing down his father’s beloved 1967 Volkswagen Type 3 fastback and four years restoring it to its original glory
Cars are not merely a means of transport for auto-enthusiasts around the globe, but they connect with their four-wheeled beauties by their soul. Cars combine love, passion, and everything which comes in between.
Over the years, some instances support this claim, like Minnesota's Lynn Pfenning, who spent 38 years of his life hunting down his first love, the 1967 Volkswagen Type 3 fastback. He took four years painstakingly restoring it to its original glory and spent $40,000 to make it better than new.
Pfenning displays his best in show award in front of his winning 1967 Type Fastback at a car show in Minneapolis. His red 1963 Beetle is behind him.
His father bought him a Brunswick Blue Type 3 fastback for $2,200 in 1967 after totaling his 1965 Volkswagen Beetle by hitting a cow. He remembers strolling the type 3 in his high school.
“Growing up, my job every Saturday was to wash and detail the family car before church,” Pfenning said
Though, after a few years, his father sold the car to a farm owner, who gifted it to his son later.
Lynn remembers spending all of his spare time in detailing and polishing the VW all his teenage years, the connection was built during that time.
Pfenning poses with the original 1967 Type 3 fastback (pre-restoration) and the car’s second owner Lyle Opland.
After his father sold the car, like any other used car's journey, this VW was supposed to end in a scrap yard or to be parked under dust layers forever. However, it's the first owner who always kept track of its whereabouts. Lynn waited for it to go on sale.
“Over the years, we may have gone our separate ways, but I always kept track of that car,” said Pfenning. “I would check in every five or some years to see if he was willing to sell me it.” The owner wouldn’t budge.
In 2013, when he finally heard that he could again take his first love to a stroll, he used all his means to own the beauty, and he successfully did. The car was parked on a farm for over ten years, and Pfenning wanted to bring its glory back.
His Type 3 was covered in rust, and the engine stopped working. To refurbish it, it would take approximately 40,000 dollars to bring back the glory.
1967 Volkswagen Type 3 fastback after restoration
All of the rust was cut out and replaced with new metal, the nuts and bolts were replaced or refurbished.
“The restorer was more than happy to let me tear out all the rat-infested parts, grind paint, rip out of all the moldy, stinky interiors and rust,” Pfenning said. As , he didn’t want to just write the check, he wanted to do the dirty work and learn about everything being done.
The 1.6-liter flat-four engine was rebuilt to a more powerful 1.8-liter, and a custom tweed interior was fitted. As a finishing touch, the car was given a new coat of Candy Brandywine paint, a simplified color found in the 1930's era hot rods.
His 83-year-old father, could not recognize the car he bought himself, in July 2018, when Lynn completed his project. He took him for a ride, and he looked so happy, he kept screaming this in German dialect all the way, "It's a Volkswagen, and I bought it brand new!"
Lynn spent 38 years chasing down his father’s beloved 1967 Volkswagen Type 3 fastback and four years restoring it to its original glory
That said, nothing will compare to his father’s priceless reaction from riding in his original Volkswagen. “Sharing this experience with him … has made every penny worth it,” Pfenning added. The car is now again in the Pfenning family and has won countless awards and titles.